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Twiddly diddly dee

I'm off to the pub in a minute with my Dad. I'm gatecrashing his weekly pint with his mates. I'm sure he won't mind. The place we go is a nice quiet pub. I've never really enjoyed anything else. Nightclubs are awful. Their reign of terror is surely coming to an end now? The only reason I ever went to one when I was younger was because it was the only way of getting a pint and extending the night a bit. Now you can go to a pub after 11pm surely the horrible 'clubbing culture' of our youth will recieve its final death blow?

In fact nothing has given me more satisfaction over the last few years than the inevitable decline of 'BOOM BOOM BOOM' dance music. The problem is that it hasn't really had an obvious successor yet. Rock music just hasn't taken off in the way people thought it would in this decade. I like to think the next 'communal party' thing will be unrelated to music. I'm half thinking it might be live comedy which fills the void. Lets hope so.

Either that or it'll just be nice late night pubs where people all chat to each other and aren't herded around like cattle with a thudding factory beat in the background.

F#ck. The penny just dropped.

I'm old.

NM

'The Insider' by Albert Camel

I spent seven hours, seven f#cking hours, on Civilisation III today. I'm not even enjoying the game anymore. Seven hours of my life pissed away. Silly, stupid and inexcusable. I really need to get a grip and put my spare time to better use. This should be one of my new year's resolutions.

Believe it or not I try to take this particular custom seriously and at the start of each year I take aim and fire at a particular ambition. I've been doing so for the past three or four years. One of them is to lose weight. Another is to waste less time. I was getting quite good at this towards the end of this year but frankly let things slip considerably in the last few months as I realised I was going to make a big change to the job I do.

It's a sobering thought that it was almost ten years ago since I was a teenager now. Time seems to slip by so quickly if we don't use it. Seven hours this morning playing a silly game, gone forever. We humans apparently peak around the age of 30. I want to try and make the most of my peak then enjoy the slide down the other side.

I intend to be a towering powerhouse of productivity and creativity in the new year! Every second of my time will be accounted for as I run towards my goals like an olympic athlete! 2006 will be The Year Of The Nickolarse!

In the meantime I'm off to finish this game of Civilisation III. It's not the New Year yet so I'm enjoying decedance while I can.

Mmm. Sholrry carnmt tlork. Munch munch. I'ym eat-shing a ch-sho-colate ash well.

NM

Media UK gets fun again

Good christ, I'm grazing on food like a big fat cow. Getting fatter by the second. Chipping out some fun on this computer, playing Civilisation III and so forth. Have actually done nothing whatsoever all day, just enjoying the company of my family and watching telly. And getting drunk.

Usually when I have a drinkie I get quite chatty and vocal before suddenly becoming very tired. With my parents I restrain myself obviously. It's odd really that you never really see your parents as anything other than that. Just as they only see you as their kid. I often wonder how me and my Mum or Dad would get on if we weren't related. Imagine, meeting your Dad but not having any blood tie to him. Would you be best friends with him? What about your Mum, would you get on?

The thing I often debate with myself is how I would react to meeting Nick Margerrison. Me, meeting me but not knowing it was me. Would we gel or fall out with each other? It's often the case that people who are alike either get on really well or fall out in dramatic fashion. I'd instantly pick up on my flaws. I'd enjoy the fact our eclectic interests matched.

If you could clone yourself, and create an exact copy of you would you do it? The Raelians believe that's the way to achieve eternal life. Your soul moving from your body once dead and possesing the new cloned version*.

I'm reading Rik Mayall's autobiography at the moment, "Bigger Than Hitler, Better Than Christ". It's a cracking read, despite it all being written in character. There's a bit where he describes his 'death' in the quad bike accident. He's there looking at the vastness of his own skull, from the inside. Peering out of the caverns of his eyes. It's an odd interesting part of the book. Got me thinking about an old theory I've bashed around in the past about the idea of the soul being molecular in size**.

I think if all that stuff was true the last thing I'd want is to be free of form floating in the universe as one with existence, only to re-appear in EXACTLY the same body. Ruined! To be the universe and then a mortal is a big switch to make, it's no wonder babies cry.

NM

*In my opinion, like all religions, these guys are wackos but if you're intrigued: www.rael.org

**Check out this 'true incident' as regards souls: CLICK HERE

I'm so worried I might be mad, it's sending me mad.

Time is rolling inevitably towards New Year's day when my resolutions kick in. I've got a few but the main one is to lose a load of weight. I'm after dramatic serious weight loss. Sort of thing that gets me in Heat magazine with a "Too Skinny Nick" picture caption. I'm toying with the idea of doing the GI diet. I'm a terrible crash dieter and this GI thing looks like The New Atkins! Excellent.

I don't see what the problem is with crash dieting. You eat loads of food, you stop and burn it off. If you keep things on a level you're not allowing yourself any lows sure, but also there's no highs. Where's the fun in that? Do you ride a rollercoaster because it's safe and efficient or because it goes up real high and then thunders down? I think we both know the answer to that.

So yes, resolution number one is crash diet. Lose sh#tloads of weight. Resolution number two is keep on my not smoking thing. It's been a real strain recently not to light up. I've no idea why but there's a strong urge there. It's been almost a year without and suddenly the urge reutrns. I'm toying with silly little internal disputes that go like this:

"Oh, yeh, but you could just have one and you probably wouldn't like it anyway.."

"But why have one if I wouldn't like it?"

"Because you might enjoy just one"

"But then I'll get hooked on tobacco"

"Ruined, hadn't thought of that. I'll come back to you later.."

And sure enough it does. But being an abstract internal desire it carries no memory of how easily I outwitted it in the previous encounter and so we go through the same above conversation. What I worry about is that this tactic may work in the end. What if in one of my weaker moments I fail to outwit its line of persuasion and crack a light to the end of a fag?

I'd be a smoker again. That would not be good.

Well, it mi-

Nope, that would not be good.

NM

Even if you haven't had a shower. (Sunday)

Merry Xmas.

It's early in the day, I've not yet got too drunk to write. In fact I've not even had a drink yet. It is of course the law in the UK that you must drink alcohol on Xmas day. I thought it'd be good to update this prior to that.

Have a nice Xmas and all that.

NM

Athelete's foot is getting cheeky again! Merry Xmas athlete's foot sufferers!!!

No, it's massive actually. (Saturday)

So, it's Xmas Eve. The Eve of the birth of Santa. Santa of course is a little fat bloke who is frankly the source of all of our society's ills. However, He has friends in high places so I can only talk about this once. After that I'm afraid I'll have to deny that I ever spoke of it. Lets look at the evidence that Santa is Evil and controls the world shall we?

Firstly this Santa bloke, his name sounds a bit like Satin. Do you think that's a co-incidence? No of course not. Secondly he always dresses in red - the colour of blood and hell. Thirdly he looks a bit like a tramp with his long beard*.

Fourthly everyone seems to like him. This reason takes a bit of explaining. You know when you're at a party and some cnut comes in and is Mr Super Popular and everyone likes him and laughs at all his jokes? And you're sat there in the corner no longer the centre of attention, even though you've practically invented late night local radio broadcasting and internet weblog writing? Do you ever get the feeling that Mr Super Popular isn't quite as perfect as he makes out? Yes, so do I. If everyone likes someone they, dear reader, must surely be hiding their cnutishness from everyone. It's up to you to expose it somehow. That's what I'm doing with Santa.

Fifthly, it's generally accepted by The Mainstream Media that Santa doesn't exist. This is of course loblocks like everything else 'They' spout. Only here and now will you get 'the truth'. Now I've got a bit of the spirit of the season in me. Let's tell it how it is! He's real alright. Not only is He real but He's the Head Honcho. He's one of, if not the, Mainline Guy! How does he get all this power and sway over people?

Santa bribes the population with material goods and the idea that if you're good you'll get more presents than if you're bad. Morality is therefore something over which he has complete control. Sod a Judge and Jury. Sod complex questions of intent and perception. He decides right and wrong. No one else! This moral certainty from a drink driver! Santa drinks LOADS of Sherry and then drives his sleigh.

And He's an advertising whore! He'll advertise anything. Fizzy drinks, crisps, shops, supermarkets, bottled water etc etc. He'll be doing stairlifts and life insurance soon. No morals at all. Yet he decides if you've been good or not?

Well, no actually. The basis he uses to decide who gets good presents and who gets rubbish ones is a lot less pleasant. He gives good presents to rich people and rubbish ones to the poor. Why is this? Because he knows who runs this joint baby! He's been cosying up to the big cheeses for longer than anyone else.

The result of this is that we've created a society where kids are taught that if they make Santa happy they're good people. To do this you must be rich. Hence the greedy world we live in!

Don't mess with Him though, He knows where you live.

NM

*Don't get me wrong I have nothing against tramps. I'm just using it as a way of adding more weight to the character slur. This will only work if you're anti-tramp. If you are, perhaps you could invent an anti-tramp gun. It'd be used only as a deterrant, like Britain's nukes, to dissuade gentlemen of the road from hassling the great and the good.

I invented the media you little spud (Friday)

You know when you have fiddly day? The day where you stub your toe on the door when you wake up in the morning. Then you knock over a cup of tea as you're having breakfast. A whole day of mild and messy minor mishaps. It's like chinese water torture though. These little accidents all add up and can put you in a foul mood. It was one of those days for me yesterday.

The only thing I didn't knock over and ruin was the scrabble board that we were using. Me and my girlfriend and two of her mates. Playing scrabble. That's right, scrabble. Game of the nerds. You have to be a pretty dull person to like scrabble. Or indeed to be any good at it. I'm cool so I was rubbish and got beaten. Ruined. It annoys me in retrospect that my fiddly day didn't in some way ruin scrabble before I was losing but in fairness I was losing from the word go. There's no winners in a game like scrabble.

There were no really silly words used either. They all made sense. However I toyed with the idea of what would happen if I put "wobs" on the board. It wasn't possible because the right letters didn't arise but it would have been nice to look the word up and find out what it means. It's a word that keeps appearing on my text messages that I'm sending out in place of Xmas cards*. It says Happy Wobs from Nick. Bloody predictive texts.

NM

*Notice my hypocrisy here? I moan about mobile phones ruining things and then take mine and use it to piss all over a Xmas tradition! The fact I've pointed this out myself means it's not a valid criticism of me anymore. It's not hypocrisy it's irony. Ha!

Yukka the Clown's Pocket

Oh dear. I spent a total of 10 hours sat here on a silly game called 'Civilisation III' yesterday. When I say that I don't mean I spent say, five hours in the morning then carried on with my life for say five minutes and then got back to it. Oh no! I wish that were true. What I'm actually talking about here is 10 consecutive hours non-stop. A full day sat infront of this screen pretending to conquer the world. This makes me a bloke, who sits on his own, in a room imagining himself as a millitary dictator crushing his enemies with brutal 'no mercy' disdain. In the olden days this would surely have been recognised as a problem?

Nowadays it's accepted as normal. You're unlikely to make any serious judgements other than perhaps suggesting that I should get a life. I was after all only playing a game. No harm in that. Unless I tell you there's no actual computer game called Civilisation III. It was a game I played without having to switch the computer on at all.

In that case I'd have to use my imagination. Sat there on my own thinking about the day people will call me 'sir' and fantasising about wars. That surely would be a much more impressive mental feat and yet you'd start to judge a bit more then wouldn't you? You'd think I was a bit of a nutter.

What if I told you it was a book of some kind? Hence the lack of a need for a computer? Then you'd be on side again, even more so than before. Oh - he's a 'reader' is he? I see. Yes, well that's okay then. A book controls one's imagination almost entirely. It tells you what to think and therefore is less suspect even than a computer game. We fear imagination and respect those things which reign it in.

The irony is that if I told you I'd been enacting this scene with a considerable group of others in say, a large meeting room in Retford, you'd maybe want to come along and see what all the fuss was about. Some ranting lunatic in a room thinking he's going to conquer the world for the good of England. If I were successful challenging my sanity would become a dangerous pastime. Even though it would now be more important than ever.

At some point here I'd cough the words George Bush for anyone who wasn't following the obvious point I'm trying to make*.

NM

* My Mum who I just read this too has asked "what is the obvious point you're trying to make?". I just told her; "the people who run this world are nutters" and she's suggested that might not be true. Email: Nick@hallamfm.co.uk with your thoughts?

Pure dribbly nonsense

I'm afraid the excitement of the season is now upon me. Seriously silly alcohol related high jinx including a pub quiz with my sister yesterday night. I'm not sure I've ever done well at a pub quiz in my life, ever. Last night was no exception. Who sang 'Grandpa'? Who was the woman in the original 'King Kong' film?* You probably half know the answer to those questions but after a few cheeky drinkies it gets a little confusing.

My sister, the little horror, kept cheating. Texting people to ask them the answers to questions! Yet another thing mobile phones have damaged. I'm not sure they were an altogether good idea you know. It's a massive sizemic change in our society which we're still adjusting to and yet it has gone largely unremarked upon.

These days if you're late to the pub, which one of my mates was, you just pop a text in and let people deal with that as if it makes it okay. Some divwit driving badly infront of you? Why's that? Chances are, they've got a mobile clamped to their head. Then there's all these mobile phone masts they're whacking up everywhere. And 'happy slapping'. & dnt evn gt me strtd on fking txt spk.

Ever had a conversation with someone and their mobile blazes into action? Of course you have. What's the correct protocol there? Do you listen to the conversation? Do you just twiddle your thumbs? Probably you're in the habit of calling or texting someone else. That's what a lot of people seem to do. Perhaps next time this happens I'll call the person sat infront of me, ask them who's on the phone and if it's okay to sit there listening or not?

NM

* Clive dunn and Fay Wray respectively.

My Mum and Sister were, to put in mildly, absolutely horrified at the vivid descriptions of my 'little problem' on this website. It's going to be a New Year's resolution to sort it out. Probably.

Incitement to an invective

I'm enjoying my gradual return to normal sleeping hours. It's nice to wake up in the morning and then go doing things in daylight hours. Not something you can really explain to someone who doesn't work nights. It's just nice. I've got two weeks of it and I'm pleased about that. Yesterday I woke nice and early and went shopping in town for presents. My girlfriend has finally given me a list of specific gifts she wants as have my Mum and Sister. Excellent. It was annoying me that I might have to guess.* Then once I'd got all my presents I wandered back to my car..

" 'Scuse me mate, I'm not a begger or nuffin' "

"Good, I'm very busy"

"Can I lend a couple of quid"

"No, I'm busy and I've got my hands full"

That annoys me. Why lie? He clearly was a beggar. I've got my arms full of stuff. Why should I give money to a lying beggar? Oh, he's swearing at me now as I leave him in the distance. So not only was he a liar but he was rude as well.

Hang on, surely this guy's not another one? He's just a student who's let himself go a bit isn't he?

" Oi, mate. Can you help me out mate?"

Another one! What's the deal here? Two beggars in the space of five minutes. This guy's going for the hippy / beggar look though. Is that better or worse? Shouldn't hippies be all nice and middle class? I'll ignore him.

"Thank god, you're the nicest person in Sheffield, everyone else has ignored me, I need some money for my train fare"

F#ck off! I'm ignoring you! I didn't, haven't even looked at you. Why are you talking to me? I'm not talking to you. I've got presents and things. Bloody hippy beggar!

I'm not saying he's got an easy life or anything, I am saying I've got a right to walk round my own city without getting harrased by other people's problems. What I really need is beggar spray. Bit like a cross between fly spray and pepper spray. It'd be the best for everyone. But in this instance I couldn't use it. My arms are full of presents.

Now in my car, I feel sorry for them and a bit bad about my beggar spray thoughts. Poor blokes have just fallen on hard times. Probably after a period of lazy times eh? Should get a bloody job! Little scrotes. Oops, there I go again. I check myself and remember that society is to blame for everything. Society and Tony Blair and The Lizards. Merry Xmas.

NM

* Got an email off a mate of mine about this which made me laugh:

"Hello Nickoli,

Been scanning your blog - I reckon you need to increase your oily fish intake - omega 3 oils 'll help you get your brain in order and improve your sleeping patterns. Bet you don't like proper fish - but get yourself to Morrison's pick up some smoked mackerel in a sealed packet - lasts for ages and you can eat it cold or grilled, either way a piece of piss. If you're feeling more adventurous grab some fresh salmon fillets, wrap em in tin foil with a teaspoon full of butter and couple of cherry tomatoes, and whack it in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes on 180. It might even sort your feet out. It's brilliant stuff, full of protein, all the nutrients you need and the lard'll drop off - make it your New Year's resolution.

Xmas pressies - here's a good test for whether girlfriend will tell you the truth when giving her a naff gift - buy her the stuff she wants, wrap em up, as you see fit, then get a steam iron box, a pan set, a blender, anything you know she'll be absolutely devastated to receive and put the other presents in the box. To make it really special, wrap it in news paper and scrawl on it in crayon "Merry Xmas to my girlfriend". If she doesn't try to beat you senseless before opening, the look of false delight on her face will be priceless, and a very useful reference for any future little white lies she might be tempted to tell.

Keep the faith Rick."

-

Excellent email methinks. Bit like this one off another mate:

"Today my athlete's foot is looking widespread but flakey, just how I like it. I am using steroid cream on it. It's providing a good fun itch but is a bit tender.

Laughed my arse off at this comment. It perfectly describes how every athele's foot sufferer feels. It's great to scratch but there's such a blurred boundary between the pleasure of intense scratching and the pain that lies ahead. Maybe that's how the Marquis de Sade started off in his youth. By the way, what athletic activities have you been involved in recently?

AB"

I'm all up for more emails off people about the blog if we've got any readers? It's hard to tell since I burned the hit counter off it. If you do want to email me my address is Nick@hallamfm.co.ukbut it's got a very strict filter on it so don't go sending porn and stuff it won't get there. Also I won't be in work for a bit so expect a delay until I reply. I'll try and put a few more emails up if the response is good. It says that 384 people have looked at my profile!

If you're interested my athlete's foot is looking quite cheeky at the moment and I've just had a nice little itch before coming to write this. Lovely.

Slow drip drip of syrup

"Your number's on my girlfriend's phone mate.. (sic) ..leave her alone or you're gonna get murdered" click, off goes the call.

I really don't like wackyness. Most people really don't know what I'm talking about when I say this. What's wacky? Well if you're looking for a good dictionary style definition it's:

"Wacky" - descriptive slang meaning someone or something which is eccentric or irrational, crazy and a bit silly: a wacky person, a wacky situation, a wacky organisation or idea.

It's not the eccentric part I have a problem with, or even the crazy bit or the silly element. I have no fundemental problem with any of these characteristics. In fact they're all qualities which I have on occasion both admired and enjoyed. It's the irrational bit. That's the bit that really galls me. There's a lack of logic and intelligence inherent in all 'wacky' behaviour which makes it a total anathama to me.

There's a lot of people who think it's funny to be intentionally wacky. They operate in the media and in real life. You will have bumped into one at some point. You might even have to sit next to one of them at work. The reason I'm so qualified to attack them is because I used to be amongst their number. I cringe at the thought of my 'wacky antics' these days. It's a substitute for genuine creativity which is easy to fall into if you're required as part of your job to do something entertaining.

When I started off in radio (all those years ago) I had no idea what I was doing. Hence I instigated 'wacky' events and features on my radio show which I thought would amuse the audience. This was back in the days of playing 30 minutes of music non-stop so the damage to listening figures wasn't as harsh as it would be these days. Nontheless I was 'wacky'. I admit that now. You see, wackyness is always born of desperation. It's the mind's reaction to a total lack of inspiration.

Jackass is 'wacky': "Tee hee, lets hit each other with bottles". The question "why" is answered with a shrug and laugh. How dull and un-wacky of me to ask that. How boring and un-cool to actually put some effort and meaning into what you do.

Most reality TV thrives on being a bit quirky and wacky. Big Brother is a good example of how wackyness evolves in the media. When it started there was supposed to be a purpose and meaning to it. How will strangers react to such an environment? The answer was - one of them will try and cheat, but other than that they'll all basically get on and behave normally.

Once this purpose had been answered the producers were left with a problem. How could they replicate their success without the now predictable results? The answer is do it again but add a bit of wackyness.

It's not just the producers of TV programmes though, it's the public as well. "Lets vote in a fat heffer as our Popstar!" - how wacky, it'll never work! Oh, it didn't. Lets vote for a stuttering weed - how wacky, it'll never work! Oh, again, it didn't.

My problem with wacky is that there's a cruel amoral streak to it. Ask any Reality TV victim. Ask anyone who has ever been 'happy slapped' - something which is a direct descendant of Jackass and a product of the 'Jackass generation'.

Or indeed ask anyone who has ever recieved the phone call I've posted at the top of this message. If you've not heard it, what happens is you get a call from a bloke with a southern accent who says something along the lines of "Your number's on my girlfriend's phone mate". You might hear a very faint clicking noise at the end of each of his sentences but it's unlikely you'd notice it as you're busy responding. It has a few stock sentences in there about cutting off kneecaps and then ends the call by telling you to "watch out or you're going to get murdered".

It's a "wind-up" call and somewhere on the end of the line there's a little 'wacky funster' listening to your terrified responses. We had it on the show once and a listener rang in to explain they'd had exactly the same call. A bit of investigation led us to a couple of 'wacky' characters who didn't enjoy the consequences of their actions as much as they had expected.

I recently heard of someone who was so terrified by this 'wind-up' call they were considering suicide!

If I've learned anything in life over the past few years it's that if you're going to do something do it well and do it for a reason. I'm trying to avoid being 'wacky' these days. I'm trying to do things for a reason. The only exception is this weblog. I hope to god it never ends up becoming 'wacky'.

NM

Somethings in my trap door doctor (Sunday)

I wandered round town yesterday with my flatmate looking for Xmas presents for people. I got one, slightly rubbish present. I only really went shopping to make myself feel like I'd made an effort. Just getting my feet wet. Dipping my toe in. I'm entirely out of Xmas present ideas for people. The irony is that while I'm with my flatmate I see about five different gifts which would be ideal for him.

I saw a Homer Simpson top which my Dad might have enjoyed. It had a picture on it of Homer Simpson slouching on a couch with a beer half asleep. Excellent! I wait in line to ask the assitant if they have this top in an XL size as medium probably wouldn't fit my Dad. She goes and checks. No, they only have medium and small sizes of that design. I was a little annoyed by this, "that's a little ironic isn't it?" I ask.

"Yes love, don't iron directly on the design though as it may damage it slightly, turn it inside out to do the front" she replied, either mishearing me or misunderstanding me or screwing with my head on purpose. I like the idea of the latter but suspect the former. I wandered off a little annoyed. Doesn't that make the joke on the top less funny? If you're selling tops which laugh at Homer and his lazy fat ways but only sell sizes which fit people who are probably neither surely that's a bit, ironic? I imagined the conversation between the assistant and the person who orders those tops.

"I had someone in today asking for an XL of one of those Homer Simpson tops, you know the ones that mock his unhealthy lifestyle."

"Whatever would someone want one of those tops in XL for?"

"I don't know, he said it was ironic!"

"Ironic? Are you sure he wasn't talking about ironing? They're good to iron but it's best to turn them inside out first"

"No, no he meant there was a duality of meaning and inherent implication that you laugh along with Homer rather than at him."

"Surely you laugh at him rather than with him."

"I thought that too. Otherwise these tops would actually be encouraging sloth and greed."

"Perhaps he was getting it as a present to mock an XL sized person. He was using the veil of irony to obscure cruelty."

"I don't think we should encourage that sort of thing. Not here. Not now."

And so on. You might think that's a bit far fetched but I think it's odd that the top I was trying to buy could be sold in anything other than an XL size. And they do say the truth is stranger than fiction don't they? Yes they do say that. Quite often in fact. And fiction.

NM

Jingle bells don't peel my bell (Saturday)

So last night was Friday and I sat in with my flatmate watching telly. My phone buzzed away and it was James -used to do overnights- Piekos on the phone. "Hiya mate, I'm really a bit drunk and tired, I don't think I'll be coming round later" he bumbled at me. Fair enuff, I'll watch Jimmy Carr's* stand-up set and then retire.

Just about to go to bed - buzz - my phone is going again. Jame's voice: "Yeh, that's where he drinks, it's his local. I've got him on the phone now. Hiya mate, I've woken up a bit, I'm with some people who don't believe I know you." --Muffling noise and then different voice -- "Are you Nick Margerrison? Are you really? Nick Mar - Jerry - Son? I don't believe you. Prove it!".

It appears that my little mate had got himself into one of those odd and very embarrasing conversations which local radio disc jockeys occasionally get stuck in. Living, as we do, on the absolute fringes of fame any normal chat can go in this direction.

"Hello"

"Hello"

"What do you do then?"

"I'm a local radio disc jockey on the local commercial radio station"

"Oh, I listen to that when I'm in the car because I like the music. What's your name?"

"Wacky Dave"

"I vaguely recognise that name, are you famous then?"

This is the bit where the conversation is in the hands of that presenter's unique personality and their particular circumstances at the time. James was clearly a little tiddly and had decided to give these people the nonsense. Unfortunately I wasn't tiddly so my responses to this gaggle of people who were passing his phone round were rubbish.

Eventually James did come round and we discovered that 24 hour licensing laws don't seem to apply to my particular part of Sheffield. In fact it was even amusing to my local landlord that I thought they might apply. As I was sober I drove to the Tesco which has a late licence and we got some Baileys to drink in front of the telly.

As soon as we settled down in the front room with a glass of it on the go I seized my chance to show someone else the Stewart Lee DVD I've got. Surely James would find this sort of thing funny, perhaps he'd even laugh at how my flatmates hadn't enjoyed it. Perhaps I could wake them up and point at him laughing at it and say: "Look see, Stewart Lee is funny, so you were wrong not to laugh and I was right! Do you see? I was right to laugh and you were wrong not too!". Then I could ask for some sort of apology.

It's a good job I didn't though as the plan would have backfired. To my horror, James sat there looking very drunk and confused. He tried to laugh but couldn't seem to work out where exactly would be the right point to do so. I think he knew I'd kill him if he didn't like it so he made a brave attempt to feign enthusiasm for it but in the end it was utterly futile. He made his excuses and left.

I sat on my own looking at the glaze of the TV screen as Stewart Lee's hilarious witticisms echoed round my flat. For a brief moment I wondered if perhaps this particular DVD set wasn't his best. Did you have to be there to find it funny? I checked myself mid thought. These people who don't immediately recognise Stewart Lee's brilliance are simply not brilliant themselves. Like me. I'm brilliant and so is Stewart Lee and that's why.. oh dear. Perhaps I should have put Ali G on or something.

NM

*He's a funny stand-up. Honestly. No really. He's good! Honest!! I know he's on telly too much. I know he's got a smug punchable face but he really honestly is genuinely funny. Honestly! He's funny even to people who don't know good comedy. They'd like him too.

Flavour Flavian (Friday)*

So, we've done the last official 'phone-in' show. I thought it was due to be on Sunday but actually I was wrong, the last one was Thursday. No topic night. From now on it'll be me playing songs and talking inbetween**. In theory it'll become a better show but at first it'll be different and that will mean people won't initially like it.

The reasons we're not doing a phone-in anymore are more than many. Firstly I was tired of doing it. I want to move forward and do something different. I'd like to be in a position where if people want to call in and talk to me they can but if they don't, it doesn't matter. There will in the long term be more ways of getting involved with the new show than there ever was with the phone-in.

Secondly you've got two and a half years worth of old shows there which you can look back on and listen to as and when you wish. I often warned people to tape the show. If you're one of the few that didn't get a few copies onto disc I guess that's no use to you but seriously, it was an obviously good show why didn't you tape a few? I'd rather do something new now while the phone-in was still good than keep at it and bugger it up. There were only four genuinely bad phone in shows once Ben The Producer got on board. The rest of them were all of some merit.

Thirdly, the laws of the land are looking very dangerous as concerns the sort of show I was doing. There's a sense of genuine confusion these days as to what people can and can't say. That's not the main factor but it's certainly a part of it.

I feel a bit guilty about quitting the phone-in format. I feel bad if you really liked that way of doing things and then go on to hate the new show we're going to do. If you do, don't decide until you've heard at least a few months of it. The phone-in is the most successful thing I've ever worked on, I'm sure it's not a format I'll never return to but for the moment it's not the right thing for me to be doing.

Out with the old, in with the new.

NM

*Bloody date marker at the bottom is totally wrong. The last entry was Thursday!

**This undersells it a bit but in truth I want expectations to be on the floor for the new show, that way no one will be dissapointed.

Kumble your bits into the hat

I'm toying with the idea of publishing an old diary on this website. It catalogues my road towards doing stand-up comedy which began at the start of the year. I've been skimming through it on my old laptop. All I need is to clear some of the references to a couple of comedians who helped me on my way and in theory I can get it up here. It might make interesting reading for anyone who has ever toyed with the idea of doing stand-up themselves.

I'd classify myself as being capable of "mildly amusing" comedy. Gentle nonsense which makes you shrug a vague laugh after sometimes huge stretches of total silence. I'd like to improve in this respect and stand-up is an extension of that.

One of my problems is that I think there is actually nothing funnier than seeing someone totally fail to get laughs from an audience. A good (fictional) example of this would be the cheeky monkey sketch on the original (and best) Alan Partridge series, Knowing Me Knowing You. John Thompson's performance is pure magic and I can clearly remember the first time I ever saw it I cried with laughter.

In real life I've watched comedians utterly die on stage and always think it's hilarious. I enjoy the tension it creates as people realise things aren't going as planned. The terrible awkward silence after each succesive punchline and the look on the comedian's face as he literally watches his comedy dream crumble before his eyes. The audience's silence sends a loud clear message: "f#ck off you unfunny bast#rd!".

This is one of the reasons bad TV comedy annoys me. There's no way we can see the inevitable smackdown. It's no good reading in the papers that another rubbish TV comedy programme has been cancelled or recieved poor viewing figures. I want to see the look on the faces of those responsible as they are told how rubbish they actually are*.

The flat silence in living rooms up and down the UK which acompanies the latest Little Britain TV show isn't witnessed by the two people who are performing it. Max and Paddy don't have to look in horror at each other as no one laughs when one of them says "how dare you" in a silly voice.

I've long thought TV comedy would be improved if it was all live and we the viewer had on our sky remotes a red button which was called "The Fu#k Off You Unfunny Basta#d Button". In the event of say, half the audience pressing this button a big fat bloke would wade onto the TV set, slap the offending unfunny performers, and shout "F#ck Off You Unfunny B#stard" at them until they ran off our screens with a mixture of humiliation and terror.

Rubbish comedy would suddenly become good. People on telly would have to really believe in their work. Shoddy crap which everyone knows isn't funny would never get on our screens. Imagine how much better Bo' Selector would have been!

Sigh, another genius TV idea I'm sure the hapless bigwigs will ignore.

NM

PS - The above entry is not intended to be funny. I am absolutely serious about it. Bad comedy should be punished.

*Working in radio I have of course seen this face as the news is told to someone that actually their wacky nonsense is boring the audience and half of them have decided they'd rather listen to a different station. Obviously I've worn this face in the past and I'm sure I will again in the future. Perhaps that's why it amuses me so much.

Raggamuffinrules

I now have three Xmas cards. One from Producer Becky, one from Maureen the cleaner and one from Jim the security guard. Sending out Xmas cards, like having a tidy room, is a sign that you're life is together in my book. People who send out Xmas cards are the sort that always have a clean plate in their house and have never tried to eat food using only a knife and spoon. It projects an image of organisation which I'd like to emulate. So, tomorrow I will try and remember to buy loads of Xmas cards and send them out to people.

The next step is presents. Now I've always been of the opinion that surprise presents are rubbish. Why surprise someone when you could actually get them something they wanted?

"Ooh, that's a surprise gift"

isn't quite as good in my book as;

"thankyou for that! It is, as I said in November, exactly what I wanted".

The first statement could mean anything. It might mean, "what the hell did he get me this for?". In fact I often presume that is what it means. How can you ever know the truth once they've got the present? They're socially bound to like it. It's rare for someone to say "what did you get me this for? It's rubbish. You've ruined my Xmas". It's rare, but I bet on the occasions it does happen, few people use the phrase "honesty is the best policy".

NM

Athelete's foot is now looking quite relaxed and a lot more natural. Kind of smooth and comforting to touch. I'm glad it's not dead. I almost didn't use the steroid creme last night out of sheer pity for my little friend.

funckymunkeyhunkycheese

I can't pretend I'm not excited that my hit rate has more than trebled in the past few days. Nor can I reasonably pretend that this is because of an unexpected 'word of mouth' campaign as excited readers spread the word about the sheer quality of this 'blog. It's plugs, pure and simple. Plugs on my radio show. It's cheating. I should be ashamed. I am ashamed. I will stop plugging it on my radio show. This thing is here for fun, nothing else.

Ahem, apart from the very practical purpose of providing me with a platform where I can explain to people why I've been sacked by Hallam FM*.

But it's nice to know I've had visitors who have read this little part of the internet. I can't deny that. I'd be a bit odd if this was being published entirely for my own amusement. Or would I? Perhaps not. Everything you say and do is ultimately for your own benefit. Or is it? Can you do something that is entirely for other people?

I think if you can some people might argue that this website is an example of one of those things. Might is the key word. They'd argue it with a might that is given to someone who has a clear moral authority on their side! The mighty moral crusader who wants to take up that challenge can perhaps call my show and mention their quest on the radio. They could even plug this site, again, and we can watch the hit counter go up by 100, again. How exciting. For you. Because this is a website which is clearly for your benefit. Not mine.

NM

My athlete's foot is literally pouring skin off it. Moist dense skin. It's like I'm sweating skin? If you're a doctor perhaps you can save me the bother of an apointment and email me a solution? Nick@Hallamfm.co.uk

*This is not true. It's a joke. Hallam FM love my work. I love Hallam FM. Not in a gay way. I'm not gay. There was some confusion over this the last time we covered it on the 'blog. I just want to sent the record straight, like me. I'm straight, as opposed to gay, something which I am not. Nor is Hallam FM. Nor are we anti-gay. There is no suggestion of that either. In fact there are gay people who listen to Hallam FM. And me. They listen to me I mean, I don't mean I'm a gay person who listens to Hallam FM. I mean there are gay people who enjoy the feel of me in their ear hole. The feeling is mutual. I enjoy being in there. It's warm and comfortable and feels very natural.

Mishmashmarshmashmar

Quite a sad day today. It was my last attendance at the infamous Carvery Club in its current form. For a few months now me and a few friends have been meeting every monday for a meal at a Toby Carvery, near you.* Work commitments and various other changes next year mean this will no longer be possible after Xmas. In some small way it marked the end of an era. Only a small way.

The ends of eras often pass me by without my noticing or reacting for a while. I remember realising a good year or so into secondary school that I wouldn't ever really see all my mates from primary school in one room ever again. Even if we were to re-unite now it'd be different, and given the fragile nature of life, impossible.

I never cry at the right time or react to news quickly enough. It can make me seem cold and distant at times and mature and sensible at others. I've never been able to understand people who can react there and then to life changing information but I have always admired them. I once had the terrible task of telling someone that a mutual friend of ours had died. Their reaction was instant, human and to be honest, awe inspiring. They quite naturally cried and broke down.

It was horrifying at the time to realise that they trusted my words so much. I had an odd but easily suppressible urge to say - "ha ha only joking!". But I wasn't so I didn't. The reason I was thinking things like that was because it really hadn't sunk in for me yet. It was only months later that I really felt the loss.

I'm the sort of person who wouldn't react to a lottery win for a few months either. I always recognise a kindred spirit when I read about people in the papers who say it won't change their lives and they'll carry on working in their current job. These people, like I would, have clearly not accepted the news yet. It's got a dreamlike quality to it.

Tonight there will be a 'reality' TV programme where the conceit is that some people have been tricked into thinking they're going into space. There's a rumour doing the rounds of the media world that this programme is not as it seems and in fact the joke is on the viewer**. I hope so but my experience of television people suggests that's unlikely. These people will be going through an experience on trust, reacting humanly to a situation and having that response ridiculed.

It's the "your mate's dead - no he's not, ha ha!" situation I glimpsed in my youth. But worse than that, because this time it has an audience of yahoos carping along and it's making the perpetrators money***. Lots of money. And no matter which way it pans out I guess that's what it's all about. In fact there's nothing the capitalist world would like more than an emotionless work force who dreams only of profit and power.

The people who are watching it are of course actively creating a world where human responses are being systematically devalued and re-packaged as mass entertainment. This is largely what most 'reality' TV does. What is X-Factor if not the exploitation and destruction of the hopes and dreams of human beings who dared to want something more? Big Brother, same trip. These people are more 'freaks' than famous and their dreams being crushed infront of their face is the attraction, nothing more.

I've had a change of morals. Despite years of saying I'll never work on TV I've changed my mind. I'm thinking of pitching a TV show to Channel 4 actually. It's called "Only joking" with Nick Margerrison. We tell people terrible news; "Your wife's dead.." then, -wait for it-, once they've abosrbed the terrible news we go; ".. only joking!". They win £50 if they don't cry.

NM

Athlete's foot looks lumpy and odd. It's not better but it's not worse. It's in a sort of stasis. It's got a thing waxy quality to it. Itching it is fun but totally unrequired. I guess I should stop doing it.


*This of course may not be true. You might not live anywhere near the said venue. I've no way of knowing now my hit counter has gone.

**The biggest TV hoax ever, is supposed to turn out that the people involved knew all along it was bollocks. They're laughing at you for watching it. Either way this of course is true.

*** I actually heard some fat cmnt in Tesco telling his mate how 'clever' it all was - "They used psychologists an' stuff to work out who'd fall for it all"!!!

(Sunday) Thus spake Rover the Raver

I sat and watched "The Littlest Hobo" on re-run today with my girlfriend. I can honestly say it is one of the most surreal experiences I've had via my television for some time. It was an episode I could just about recall from my youth but this time round there were some serious liberties taken with what at first appeared to be a reasonably plausible story.

The story concerned a little kid who was in a wheel chair. His Dad (who was a snobby millionaire) didn't want him to enter the frisbee competittion in case he was humiliated infront of the other normal kids. So his Dad's servant took the Littlest Hobo off and put him in a cellar. Fortunately the window was open and Hobo escaped and ran back to the little kid. Then the Dad came back and was annoyed until, without explanation, the story jump cuts to the kid rolling down a hill. So the dog runs after him. And a car crashes. And then the dog jumps at the kid and knocks his wheelchair over. And then his Dad runs over hugs them both and lets him enter the compettiton. In that order, with no supporting narrative. Just really trippy music!

The frisbee compettition happens and three kids who we'd not already seen won things, after a quick montage of frisbee throwing. Then the judge announced a special award for matey in his wheel chair who 'can even do things we cannot'. Then he couldn't get up the staris to collect his award so The Littlest got it for him. WTF?

The story ended like this: "I guess that dog is the sort of dog that just doesn't hang round for people" as it ran off into a road. So they go to the petshop and get a new one.

Cue the song, which was the best bit.

No wonder when I was a kid I was afraid of dogs. The 'bad acid' narrative of that programme is enough to put you off them forever.

NM

Athelete's foot update: and what an update. I'm awoken from my slumber by a familliar but ancient feeling. It's back! It's really back!! It itches like nothing else. I scamper into the kitchen and get the cheese grater. This is going to be fun!!! Pain and pleasure are bedfellows dear reader, the only confusion is that after industrial strength itching the thick rubbery patch (where years ago skin used to be) hasn't torn at all. No blood. The steroid creme has made my skin bullet proof. Scratch those earlier thoughts about not going to see the doctor. I've got a problem here.

(Saturday) Yogo wacker

Look at the time I posted my last post! Middle of the morning on a Friday. Why was that? I suffer from insomnia. To get things into perspective here I do not have the internet at home so I clearly drove in to work and whacked out a blog entry at 7 in the morning! If you'd already sussed this with the power of your mind give yourself a pat on the head, you were right.

I've had insomnia for years and years. When I was a kid I'd wake up thinking it was morning when in fact it wasn't. Or more accurately it was, just more the sort of 4am morning that most of us never see. One of my earliest memories is of one morning when I woke up, went downstairs and out into the back garden when I picked a stawberry and took it back up into my room. The backdoor wasn't locked (those were the days of no crime), I was about 5 years old and it was, even then, a surreal thing to do.

Insomnia would be great if it meant you were able to be superhuman and just not sleep at all. Like a crazed cocaine addict (without the hallucinations) you could while away the days and nights without having to stop for no one! In truth insomnia means you spend most of the time feeling really tired and falling asleep at the wrong moment.

There's been many occasions where I've snoozed inappropriately. A big celebrity awards ceremony is one. Sat with 'important' radio types I slumbered like a baby after the meal. It was remarked upon at the highest level, apparently, I was asleep so didn't notice.

Then there was once in a meeting, one of those 'inspirational' workshops. I'm watching, nodding, drifting, as Billy Bigtime spouts rubbish about breaking blocks of wood and our inner potential. Then I'm watching as criminals run from me, I'm Batman! Chasing the baddies in my thin lycra suit. Swinging from the rooftops. I groan, really loudly. For no reason. Big loud, sleeping noise. "Roar!" - the whole room looks round. There I am. Nothing more to add.

When I woke up on Saturday morning my long suffering girlfriend just nodded as I told her I was going to do some shopping (5am) and then go update my blog. I love her, so I bought her scotch pancakes before curling up with her again at the more sensible bedtime of 9am.

NM

Scratch free situation with the athlete's foot. It looks bumpy and a bit odd but essentially okay. Perhaps it's left a legacy of scar tissue? Time will tell. At my girlfriend's insistence I apply more steroid creme and feel sad that my old friend looks so clearly beaten. Perhaps at this rate I won't even need the Doctors!

(Friday) Humpalumpadumpertydee

So I spent most of Thursday night - Friday morning messing about on the internet. One thing I wasted a good few hours on was adding a hit counter to this page. Once it was there I could see the number of people who were logging on, where they were from, what their IP address was and so forth. I was quite pleased with myself once I'd installed it. I'm not as thick as you'd imagine, given my proffesion.

Anyway once it was up I realised that not only could I look at all these details but so could everyone else. This means anyone could check out the IP address of anyone who logged onto this site. It was a confusing realisation. On the one hand it'd look cool because judging by the ammount of email traffic I'm getting there's already a few people who look at this site on a fairly regular basis. On the other hand I was worried. IP addresses are the sort of thing that hackers use aren't they? It also worried me that there was some sort of pay off for thje hit counter software. It involved an advert deal or something?

I stared blankly at the screen. It really made me question why I was doing this weblog. Did I need to know the number of people who were looking at this site? Did I require the ego massage? Was it right to exploit the people who looked at it by ruining things with adverts? They're a fact of life on the radio show but did I really need to put them up here?

The last thing an egomaniac needs to be confronted with is the blatant truth of their own ego. And here I was gazing at it: a device on my site which could exploit and expose bored readers of this little daft thing that's here for no real reason. Bugger! I removed it after five minutes. During that time we had a visitor from Manchester. I've got his/her IP address if they want it back?

NM

Athlete's foot looks okay but the itch is returning. I think I'm going to give in to girlfriend pressure and go get the damn thing sorted. It'll involve a Doctor's appointement. This involves effort. Already the chances of my infection's survival looks optimistic.

Rockaroundthecock

I'm eating too much food, I'm sleeping in too much and I have very little real structure to my life. I'm getting a sort of porridge and jam coloured face. The bags under my eyes are a dark shade of grey. My hair is lank and greasy.

The reason is that I am addicted to the internet. I read a story about it in the paper last week. Internet addiction is ruining the lives of 1000's of Americans. They sit up all night reading dull inane nonsense. Flicking from site to site and back again to see if anything has changed. My current favourite game is scouring wikipedia for information on things which I've always wanted to know about but had no way of doing so. Rap music is a good example. I flicked round entries on Puff Daddy, 2-Pac, Biggie Smalls and the like a few days ago. The game I play involves following all the links on a particular entry until you reach a blank page.

Last time I got this bad I banned myself from any internet use whatsoever. This time I intend to conquer my demons in a more moderate fashion. Perhaps give myself a certain length of time after which I've got to stop using for the rest of the day.

Things will surely only get worse once I've got the internet installed at my house. That thing won't even have a firewall!

Talking of which, here's an email I got off a listener about ways round office firewall's I think. There's no way I'd use it here, I'm not computer confident enough, but feel free to apply it yourself.

Email from Chris in Doncaster:

I don't know if this is exactly what you are wanting... but here goes. I'm sorry I can't call to your show (phones duff at the moment) but in reply to what you've asked on the show tonight. The way you are able to get past your little blocks on google.co.uk or whatever you're trying; it is best for you to use 'proxy servers' these will just host whatever you're wanting to go on. The best thing is if your internet currently blocks downloads, proxy servers can sometimes get past this (old college days proved this) www.proxyking.net is a good one but I don't think I ever got a download from it. www.nomorelimits.net is the best one (in my own opinion) for the reason that it's never done me wrong. All you do is just look down the page and you will see a place it says to type your URL in (web address). Do this, click your preferences that the page lets you change if needed, then hit the enter key and you're sorted.
If this doesn't work or isn't what you wanted, I'm sorry.
Hope it's of some use to you. Have fun

--

Furthermore here's a link to a great website about the old kids TV programme rainbow: http://www.widdy.demon.co.uk/rainbow/comic.htm

NM

My athlete's foot really looks like it's cleared up. I'm trying to seize the nettle and finish it off totally with steroid creme but I really have lost it! Only slightly itchy at best. Ruined.

Robsten Heyter is your leader

Yesterday I met up with the bloke who writes the fantastic www.phlegmcomics.com and had a chat about stuff. He seems like a nice chap, we drank two pints of Guinness in the daytime and frankly I felt a bit tiddly afterwards. I then got that tired feeling you get for the rest of the day. I'd never met him before but we'd been chatting on email after I submitted a short comic strip script I'd written to him.

Today I got an email of the finished strip! It's beautifully drawn and will be published in one of the new issues of Phlegm which will be out next year. It's called "That Bloke Off Big Brother". It's three squares long and represents the fulfilment of Goal #2 for the year 2005! Goal #1 was to do some stand-up comedy, something I did earlier in the year. In fact I kept a diary of my thoughts and feelings in the run-up to Goal #1 and if possible I'll post it up here for my 74 readers later in the month*.

Both Goal #1 and Goal #2 are lifelong ambitions and it's nice to have managed to get them in the bag before I turn 30. The problem is I'm actually running out of ambitions**. I guess my next step is to do them both again, but better. That's how my radio career started off.

NM

* This is a guess. It says 74 people have read my profile. That means since the site started in total 74 different computers have looked at this blog's profile. If we're being a bit more honest I estimate I've got more like 5 readers. Me, you and the CIA.

** Remaining ambitions include: hang out with Missy Elliot, get a songwriting credit on an Oasis album, work on Dr Who somehow. These ambitions are the easier ones so I've left them 'til last.

Good news athlete's foot fans, I appear to have 'lost' the steroid creme which was calming it down so effectively. I say 'lost' but I'm open to the possibility that this may have been intentional. My affliction does provide me with a fun habit which since I gave up smoking I think I deserve.

Joanne and John and Jonah

This morning after work I was listening to Michelle Dignan's radio show and she asked why it is that pop groups like Girls Aloud always do really raunchy shows at the G-A-Y club, where all the men are presumably not interested in seeing that kind of thing. I'd thought this before and had been told it was because this was the only place a pop group could guarantee an exclusively adult audience. They can 'raunch it up' without worrying about isolating their primary audience of primary school kids. Makes sense. I stopped short of emailing Michelle my rather boring bit of information as it had only been a throwaway link, she was observing something amusing for the audience.

It reminded me of a little rant that the late Douglas Adams put forward once in one of his books -The Salmon of Doubt - I think. He was talking about the old comedian standard joke: "aeroplanes have something called a black box recorder which can't be destroyed... why not make the whole plane out of a black box?" Ho ho ho. Went the crowd. Poor Mr Adams frowned at their ignorance as he lamented that black boxes are made from titanium which is too heavy to make planes out of. Being ignorant is not funny, he concluded.

I think sometimes people like me and Douglas (or Doug as I like to call him in my weblog sometimes) are missing the point. Life is sometimes more fun if you leave questions unanswered and occasionally even laugh at them. What a great world it would be if the equation ran: 24 + 16 = tee hee hee. Briefly great world anyway. Ultimately I guess it'd be tiresome and wacky. It's a thin line I'll admit. In fact if you're having difficulty following this thread imagine a world where 2+2 was always 'tee hee', it's a glimpse into how life can sometimes feel...

Both me and The Dugster (or Duggie as I occasionally refer to him in my weblog) are atheists. Actually Captain Doogie is dead these days so I guess it's more accurate to say he 'was' an atheist. Or is it? Not sure. Anyway as an atheist you're making a very clear statement; 'There Is No God'. I think it's more accurate to say that I can't see one. The meaning of the word is anti-'theology'. There's no religion to which you subscribe. For years I was agnostic, that means you're not sure. Then I read an interview with The Dougman where he said if you understand the principle of 'the burden of proof' you have a duty to be an open athiest. I agreed.

Anyway, missing the point, I think is sometimes the point. Which is lucky really because I've totally lost the point of what I was writing. We've had 74 people look at this website now. Is that the point? No, no it's not. I'm happy with less than that to be honest.

Do you think they'll keep coming back if I keep missing the point? Perhaps that is/was the point?

NM

Watched Kylie Minogue today, the greatest hits DVD. It made me cry like a girl. I've decided to myself that she's clearly some sort of Goddess who I should perhaps start to worship. She's not a rival to my girlfriend. I won't worship Kylie in a sexual way. I just think I should start sacrificing insects and stuff to her. I'll start off with wasps perhaps?

Tundra in the tent

I'm feeling really full up today, I went to the Carvery Club with Matt Mackay, Ginger Dave, Phoneboy, James Piekos and one of Dave's mates whose name I've forgotten. He seemed like a nice chap though. It was great to get a good old group of chaps together and banter about life. I enjoy watching the dynamics of people in a group like that. I've recently been reading loads of books like Manwatching, Introducing NLP and most importantly The Naked Ape. They're all about people and how we interact. The latter is quite specifically all about nailing home the point that you and I are apes, pure and simple. We've got language and so forth but then again so have apes.

Anyway, the practical upshot of all this theory is that humans are readable simple creatures who follow certain rules. Once you've been told about all this stuff it's really hard to switch it off though. I'm no expert on it, just a curious wanderer on the outskirts of knowledge, but what I have learned is constantly re-emphasised to me in social situations. Initially it made occasionas like the one today a bit difficult because I was consciously picking up on stuff which I'd usually be aware of only subconsciously. Now however it means I'm enjoying a chat with my mates even more than before and I feel a lot more relaxed in the company of my fellow human beings.

While I was dreaming these thoughts the lads were thinking of things that start with a "k" sound as in Carvery. The Carvery Club Card, part of a Carvery Collective, in Carvey Country. Much delight was had by all when we slipped a carvery cock into the carvery conversation.

NM

I'm concerned, my athlete's foot really looks like it's clearing up. It's not looked as healthy as it does at the moment for ages. No flaking or anything, just firm solid skin. It itches only slightly, thus rendering over enthusiastic scratching almost totally unrewarding.

Humble start to life on the road (Sunday)

I really like reading comic books. I read a weekly comic book called 2000AD. It's great. It irritates me that some people think these things are for kids. In my view it's only like going to see a 15 rated film. Nowadays you'd be hard pressed to find a big budget 18 rated film actually, they prefer a 15 certificate because it ups ticket sales. So there! Anyway, I'm reading my 15 rated film, on the train, getting mocking looks from people. At least I think I was. It's hard to tell.

I've never understood why people think a whole medium such as comic books should be exclusively for teenagers. There's a poncy name for comic books actually - 'sequential art'. I'm reading 'sequential art' you little turd! It's ART and it relies on a SEQUENCE. It's been around for years actually. It's the first ever form of story telling and it's for people who're clever and sophisticated. Granted, some of the storylines do pander to the idiot in you but the same can surely be said of "X-f**king-Factor" can it not?

In fact this gets right to the nub of the matter for me. I'm childish for reading concise well written satire in the form of 'sequential art' classics like Judge Dredd and Leatherjack whereas the morons who lap up Simon Cowell's piss poor panto aren't? Great. A five year old can understand a football match but no-one ever suggests football is childish. Apart from me, just then. I heard a little kid in a pram gurgle the words "Chico Time" to it's mother's delight while I was waiting in Preston train station last month. Does that mean you've got the brain of an infant if you too watch X Factor. Yes. Yes, it does. But conversely the fact teenagers read 2000AD does not in any way subtract from the fact that comic books are not just for kids.

Here's a link to a good locally produced comic book: www.phlegmcomics.com

I'm currently trying to meet up with the bloke who writes it actually. My plan is to hoist a load of scripts I've written on him.

NM

My athlete's foot actually looks like it's cleared up considerably. This is down to me only using steroid creme on it. I was told to combine this with athlete's foot powder but that just seems to perpetuate the nonsense. One consequence of the steroid creme is it makes your skin really tough and leathery, perfect for extreme scratching!

Yabba dabba don't! (Saturday)

I went to my girlfriend's work's Xmas party today. It was a big corporate thing. I'd agreed to go before I realised it clashed with the Hallam FM party. I'm still not sure if that's a good or bad thing. I like the Hallam FM people but I'm not a very good drunk. In fact I'm a rubbish drunk. This is a problem I'd rather inflict on the people my girlfriend has to work with than those whom I do.

I'm sat there talking to a perfectly nice bloke who is mates with my girlfriend. Internally I'm aware of the fact that I'm talking utter bollocks. Externally I'm telling him what's what and who's who. Arm round his shoulder, "you and me mate, we're the same see? We've got it sorted. These lot, they're on another planet. Radio is just people see. Now I know that I do. In fact why don't I ring XXX he's in the know." Now I'm sat there watching all this from afar, tutting away at myself, Captain Nob'ead with his mobile phone, showing off about the 'famous people' I know. The rant continues into this bloke's ear: "Nah, it's not too late, he's a good mate this guy. He loves it when I call him to say hello. He'll be made up. Where you going?".

Speed dial options on mobile phones are the only thing that makes the call that follows possible. As it happens he seemed happy to chat and I nattered away at him for a good hour. Poor bloke, he's an idol of mine and I'm sure he rues the day he relented and gave me his mobile number. Actually, he's just got a new website. It's fantastic. Want to find out who he is? Click here.

Do you see how I did that? I'm really getting into this website thing. It's very exciting for me.

NM

Scumbags of the world unite, you have nothing to loose but your bags. (Friday)

My room isn't tidy. It needs a good solid going over. I think it affects me psychologically when my room is messy. It sort of tells me that even though I'm giving off the appearance to everyone else that I'm a really together dude in reality I'm still the same little moron my Dad used to tell off for being untidy and disorganised. I've just fallen on my feet, for the moment, and ultimately I'll get found out at some stage.

The obvious solution to this is of course to tidy my room. I think part of the reason I don't do this is because I'm expressing inner turmoil to myself. I often feel a bit of a fraud when my room is tidy and my life is running neatly. It's not me. I honestly sometimes have difficulty getting to sleep in a tidy, spotless, well ordered room. It fractures my personal identity. It's a bit like when I loose weight and get genuinely slim, I can't help but feel I've betrayed the fellow pie-eaters of this world by escaping their number and pretending to be normal.

There should be more research done into this. We're territorial animals, perhaps having a messy room is our way of marking our territory. It's safer than crapping all over it and reasonably effective. 2000AD comics, rubbish CD's that only I like and a massive pile of laundry - all indicators that you're in my room. My little nest!

So, my untidy room is in a way an expression of inner turmoil, and a symbol of my own animalistic habits. That and the expression of the fact that sometimes in life I simply can't be arsed.

NM

Trotter's War

I don't understand comedy. It just makes no sense to me that some people find some things funny and others do not. I'd love to understand why that is. Today I inflicted the ramblings of the alternative stand-up comedian Stewart Lee on my flatmate who stared blankly but politely at the screen as I giggled away at Stu's hilarious observations. It's a DVD that I've bought called Stewart Lee, Stand-up comedian. It's great. Or at least I thought it was. My flatmate didn't seem to, nor did my other flatmate who came in sat down and looked equally confused by the cause of my mirth.

I have real trouble dealing with things like this. I think if something's funny to me then surely it must be funny to everyone? Therefore the lack of laughs in my flat today suggests either my flatmates are:

A) NOT LAUGHING ON PURPOSE!!! Just to annoy me!! Look at him over there, not laughing! God damn it! Why aren't you laughing? I'm laughing, look, look at me laughing! Why aren't you laughing? Tsk. I'm annoyed now. I'm laughing with anger and a hint of menace. This isn't how it was supposed to be, but if it's how you want to play it that's fine by me. I'll just laugh louder and louder!! Ho ho ho!!! Are you scared yet? Ho ho ho!!

Or

B) NOT LAUGHING BECAUSE THERE'S SOMETHING WRONG WITH THEM!!! Yes. Yes, that's good. That'd be why they're not laughing. Now I can sit back in my chair and chortle as I imagine it's just because I've got a better sense of humour and I am more intelligent. That's why they don't find it funny! Of course! Why didn't I think of that before? I imagine it must be because I'm so modest. Yes, that'll be it. Modesty is just one of my many remarkable qualities.

Yes, that's where it leads, blatant comedic facism. So disenfranchised by the lack of laughs I start deciding that it's actually because everyone else is inferior to me. All facists are just misunderstood idealists who got carried away with themselves. Adolf, Osama, Musollini, all of them started off as idealists. I'm not saying I sympathise with them but as I giggled inanely at comedy which my flatmates simply did not find amusing I started to empathise a bit. They too probably once suffered the humiliation of watching a comedy DVD that no one else finds funny.

Against my better judgement, I toyed with the idea that people are different and comedy is subjective. Then I replaced this thought with an ideal world where all of us march side by side singing the praises of; The Mighty Boosh, Stewart Lee and Robin Ince's new stand-up set. A better world I'm sure you'll agree.

Anyway, we switched it off and put on The Simpsons. This week Lisa pretended to be ill and ended up getting hooked on a video game. Not really finding it funny I bid my flatmates farewell and pootled off to work.*

NM

Today my athlete's foot is healing up a bit as the steroid creme works its evil magic. I've been here before with this. It'll clear up but in the end it'll be back, and then I can scratch like no man has scratched before!

*It's trendy these days to say that The Simpsons isn't as good as it was. See! I'm just like them in a way. Isn't that a good end to the story? This blog's great isn't it? I've had 16 people read it. Although about half of them are friends of mine who only looked because I emailed them the address. I reckon at least some of them are excited listeners keen to see what their favourite presenter is upto in his spare time. Brilliant.

Here's some website addresses of listeners who also do websites:

Adam's websites:
http://djz.r0x0rs.com/
http://www.theregal.net/

Craig's:
http://www.myspace.com/garth40k

And, someone who has taken up the cheer up Damon Albarn campaign: www.freewebs.com/tropicalpenguins

Mungo Bungo Loblocks

I'm reading through my old 2000AD comics at the moment. There's a big long series called Leatherjack which I'm scanning through. It's very well written and the artwork is nicely subtle in places. People often think I'm joking when I say I'm a fan of comic books. Either that or they think "comic" as in comedic. There's nothing funny about Leatherjack though, oh no! He's a tough no nonsense assasin from the future! Not funny "ha ha" anyway, funny peculiar perhaps. But there's no way you'd say that to his face if he was bearing down on you. Or indeed, if he were real. Which of course he is not... and I accept that, now.

I've been in two minds all day as to whether or not I should announce my little weblog to the people that listen to my late night talkshow. The reason for this is that I'm not sure that everyone who listens to it fully understands the show. Today, like most days, I've had another phone call from my boss telling me that someone's complained about the show. I'm utterly bored of that mentality. The complainer's, not my boss. I can't really tell you what the complaint was about because each of them has to be forwarded to a government body which then decides if what I said was against the law. It'd be silly to chip off about it here. But the thing that does me is why do these people listen? I used to think people in radio made up complaints to make themself look tough and hard. I honestly don't think anything I do on my radio show is 'shocking' or 'controversial' and it always depresses me when other people do.

So, in the event that I do announce it on my show and anyone bothers to look at it, hello. Don't start complaining about things that aren't actually doing any harm.

Now, I'm off to look at some of the other 'blogs done by people in Sheffield. How great is that? You can click on the thing that says Sheffield and it takes you off to see other people's 'blogs!

A big day in the history of the internet

Today I've spent time with James Piekos who used to present the overnight show on Hallam FM but now works on Viking FM in Hull. We talked exclusively about radio. That was it. That's all me and James ever really talk about unless we're drunk. He's one of my favourite dinner dates. Not in a gay way. I'm not gay. Nor is he. Both of us are not gay. We don't mind gay people. Some of our best friends are gays. Just not us.

On my show I cried when I listened to an Oasis song, "Live Forever". The song faded out and it was time to talk. I was a bit embarrased to admit my tears to the audience but it makes me feel good to know that I've now cried on air. It was really late at night so I imagine only a few factory workers in Worksop know about me staining the studio with salty fluids during the show. But even so it's nice to think that I did. And it's nice to know that they know too. I wonder if it's possible to post audio on this thing? Probably not.

The sad news is that Steve Strange my producer is leaving at the end of the week. This means the show may be about to enter a new stage - we've been through a total of three stages so far. However, Steve's got a great new job so it's nice to see my little protoge moving on in life.

Finally of course, I've spent the last couple of hours farting about making this thing ... I am excited.

I've created an online diary which I'm sure at some point, people, will read. I'd expect easily a handful of people will read this at least once. Brilliant!

I used to write one of these years ago on the old website at work. It was quite good but some genius decided it'd be a good idea to delete it. I threw a hissy fit and quit writing for them for ages. Then I relented because I simply couldn't bare not to pump the bowels of my mind clean on a regular basis. Then they deleted it again just prior to a website re-launch which didn't include any 'blogs at all. Ruined.

So now I've moved to here. The blogger.com website where I'm just another div writing about his life, for the fun of it. Not for money. Actually that makes it seem somehow purer and more exciting.

And if I ever left or got sacked from Hallam FM, this 'blog will still continue as a living testament to whatever it is that drives me to communicate inane nonsense to the rest of the world.

Actually, I've been recently inspired by a really very good 'blog on the following website: www.richardherring.com

He's formerly of the comedy duo Lee and Herring. Who were famous because they did some things on telly. His blog is really good and very addictive. The irony of Lee and Herring is that both of them are now producing far superior work to the stuff they did when on TV. Yet they both seem to maintain that they can't get proper TV work as a double act? The TV commisioners of this world are stupid. That's surely not news to you if you've come to this blog via my radio show? It's not news to me either. Great. This blog is really cooking! Why not tell your friends about it and come back and visit tomorrow for more of my exciting adventures?

NM

Today my athlete's foot is looking widespread but flakey, just how I like it. I am using steroid cream on it. It's providing a good fun itch but is a bit tender.

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