Home again and back to work

I’m back from a short trip to Denmark where I saw a very tall (well over six foot) Pikachu carrying a half full bottle of Famous Grouse along the street. Later, that same Pikachu pushed a fifties gangster on a swing that looked like a spider web. There was a violin case involved.

At that point, I started drinking. I thought, if all that shit starts to feel normal, that’s when I’ve had enough to drink.

Before that I went out in the sunshine. I know, always a bad idea, but living in Scotland you forget how dangerous that is. I now look like a representation of Phantom of the Opera produced by the white chocolate version of Cadbury’s Flake. I am Captain Flaky, the Incredible Disintegrating Man. The day before I was King of the Lobsters. It’s the destiny of all gingers, even when the ginger is grey. Sorry, young Gingers, but the night life is the only one for you. Forever. Stay out of the sunlight. It will destroy you.

If the sun comes out and I’m not ready, forget sunscreen. You might as well baste me. I have the DNA of vampire legends. The sun will turn me to dust, a bit at a time. Fortunately it all grows back. I must look out my sunscreen if this summer is going to be a hot one. Mine is made by Dulux. Factor Total Reflective.

I can’t post a selfie now. I look like an escapee from a leper colony. It’s worse than the time I went to the shop after being at the dentist for a wisdom tooth extraction.

“Yes sir, what would you like?”

“Fooyah, nom slabby nimnimnimnimnim. Skalyik!” It probably makes sense in Danish.

I am never doing that again. I must avoid shops tomorrow if possible or anywhere I might leave a flaky trail. Or meet people. Or be seen.

It gives me a bit of an insight into Margo Jackson’s ‘The Mark’. My facial horribleness is temporary. I know it grows back, it always has. It’ll only take a few days to get back to mildly repulsive. The main character in that book has a mark that cannot be fixed.

It’s coming out this week and it’ll be a mind-buggery for PC and non PC alike.

You will have to read it twice, but it’s worth it.

 

 

Unreal numbers

Corbyn is a lunatic.

He plans to raise money for extra spending, not save money by stopping all the ridiculous lifestyle-control groups that waste so much on policies that are designed to not work.

Of course they are not intended to work. If antismoking worked and we all stopped, what happens to their cushy jobs? If antifat and antisugar and all the other food Nazi policies worked and we all got thin and type II diabetes didn’t exist, what happens to their cushy jobs? Now we have antivaping, another pressure group we’ll all pay for and they want their own income stream from a vaping tax. Really. A tax on steam!

All these pressure groups depend on not succeeding. If they succeed they are out of a job.

Anyway, Corbyn plans to fund his Utopia by getting all the rich people to give up bothering to work any more or simply move to another country. He plans to raise corporation tax to 26% which will move every big company out of the UK. A lot of small ones too. Good luck finding a cheap alternative to the Royal Mail if Corbyn gets in. They’ll all be based in Lithuania.

He will not get the tax take he projected. He might not get anything at all. He’ll spend it anyway.

I’m certainly not building a business on a 26% corporation tax rate, plus tax on anything I earn from that business personally, plus VAT plus business rates plus council tax etc. I won’t have much left for all that hard work.

If Leg Iron Books gets to be a big success it won’t be in the UK any more.

Okay, scrapping university tuition fees, I’m good with that. But why not get the money by stopping the tax-funded lobby groups? If the lobby groups feel that strongly about their case they can fund themselves. If they have as much popular support as they claim they can survive on donations. Funny, they seem to rely heavily on tax money…

If Corbyn gets in we’ll all be skint again. Next time Labour lose an election there’ll be another note in the Treasury saying there’s no money left. They do it every time.

I don’t want to vote Tory, and I won’t vote SNP or Lib Dem. I’ve never voted Labour and never will. I spent myself into penury once, I’m not voting for a government who will do it for me.

I’d like to vote UKIP but they’ve gone a bit strange. I’m not sure where they stand now.

For me, the biggest issue is the Nannying. Just leave me alone! Okay, I know salt and smoking and whisky isn’t good for me but I like those things. I might die before I get to the adult nappy and thinking it’s 1967 while drooling in a wheelchair years but trust me, I’m okay with that.

I’m not costing the NHS anything. I’m on no medication and the local medical centre doesn’t know who I am. I am not obese and am on no benefits of any kind. I have paid far more into the NHS than I could ever use.

I’ll vote for a party that has one core promise. A promise that they will not try to control what I eat, drink or smoke. A promise that they will not try to run my life for me. In any way at all.

Basically, promise me that once elected, you’ll leave me alone, and you get my vote.

The long spoon

Aberdeen City Council must have a good supply of long spoons for supping with the devil.

Tipped by Roobeedoo via Twitter, it transpires that there is a Labour/Tory/Independent coalition in charge of Aberdeen City now. The SNP increased their seats but not by enough to take control. So the others have ganged up on them. The SNP are not in charge in Aberdeen.

Surely the other parties are happy about this? Okay, it’s a bit like Luke Skywalker teaming up with Darth Vader but if they are both threatened by the same opponent, a temporary alliance might make sense.

Labour lost half their councillors, while the Tories went from three to eleven in the last council elections. The Lib Dems took a hit too, but only lost one. So, if Labour want any say in how Aberdeen City is run, coalition is their only hope. Joining with the SNP won;t help, they are hugely outnumbered and won’t get a look in. The Tories have eleven, Labour have nine so roughly equal matching there.

It could work. The independents will vary their support depending on the issues but the core parties, Labour and Conservative, are balanced. Nothing dramatic is likely to happen.

There has been no word from the Conservatives on this but Labour are incensed. How dare their party members fraternise with the enemy? It’s heresy! Burn them!

Well, the plan is to suspend them from the party.

So they will, in effect, be independents with no party backing. Since no council in Scotland came out with a clear majority party to take charge, this kind of thing is likely to happen all over the place. That leaves the Tories with clear charge of Aberdeen City and probably a lot of other councils too. Just when those Labour councillors are going to need party backing and support, the party washes its hands of them. Even the SNP are disgusted.

Next time you take a shot, Labour, try to miss your foot.

Oh what am I saying? Lately, the Labour party must have feet like Swiss cheese. The first shot hits, they just keep firing.

Labour used to like calling the Tories the ‘nasty party’. Then they do something to prove they are just as bad. That’s the thing about political parties.

Deep down, they’re all nasty.

Flying polishes

CstM here for a short interlude.

A friend of mine in the nail polish community has started up an online petition, collecting signatures for the cause of getting the Civil Aviation Authorities to review their flight restrictions on nail polish.

Nail polish has been deemed a hazardous material thus you can’t send it out of the UK using Royal Mail. Inside the UK you can max send 3 polishes in a parcel and you have to get through a lot of faff of putting a huge sticker on it proclaiming that it contains nail polish. This is what she’ll try to get changed or at least get answers to why that is. I for one would be a bit more nervous of my “girl cave” that’s filled with bottles of nail polish, if they can suddenly combust or otherwise kill me.

So if you have the time and feel like supporting this endeavour you can sign the petition Here and you can also read more about the whole thing plus the questions that will be asked of the Civil Aviation Authority.

The new stuff

I once knew a guy called Matt White. Really. I never got around to asking if his parents were malicious enough to name his brother Gloss, his sister Satin and the dog Non-Drip. But that’s neither here nor there.

I’ve now finished the internal editing for Margo Jackson’s book ‘The Mark’. It was, as I said before, a quick edit. No changes to the story, it’s sharp and cleverly done. Like the film ‘The Sixth Sense’, you need to read it twice because the clues were all there, you just didn’t see them first time round.

Just trivial little changes to typos (very few) and format. It’ll be about 220 pages or so and will sell in paperback and eBook for about the same as Mark Ellott’s ‘Ransom’. All I have to do now is get the covers ready, and that won’t take too long. It could be available as soon as next week.

Seven months since the first book, ‘The Underdog Anthology’, and Leg Iron Books now has a catalogue of seven books. I’m averaging one a month. Going places. Heading for the big time. There are still my own books, two of which (Jessica’s Trap and Samuel’s Girl) are out of contract with their previous publisher. They’ll need new covers, the old covers belong to the cover artist and I can’t pay to keep them, but otherwise they’ll be republished under Leg Iron Books.

I can also assign the other stuff to Leg Iron Books, it’s not as easy as it sounds but it can be done. I have copyright on the covers of all my self-published ones so nothing will change apart from them coming under the banner of the rook.

The catalogue is going to expand quickly. I have a short story collection from Mark Ellott and another novel from Margo Jackson in the ‘to-do’ list and more from Dirk Vleugels too. There will be a Halloween Underdog Anthology for certain and a Christmas one this year. I’ll make sure of that.

Yes, there is a possibility of science work. I have potential to produce spores for blue-cheese making using knowledge I have from both university level microbiology and ground level food shop work, and similarly the possibility of producing a skin infection cure that will blast the hell out of the current emollients. It depends if they can believe I can really do it. I might do it anyway, neither of them are hard and neither would cost me much to do independently.

That will not stop the publication business. Leg Iron Books is here to stay. I’m 57 years old. A drone would be looking to retire. I’m starting a new business venture while keeping the other stuff going too. Okay, I have to eventually die of something but it won’t be boredom.

I don’t care about fame. I’m not a Kardashian. I would like, one day, to not have to care about money and how I pay the next bill, but I know I am not alone in that wish. There are so very many of us.

I intend to do something about it. I intend to use what I know how to be. I’m a boffin, a backroom boy, not a front man. I don’t know how to be famous so I’ll make you famous instead and let you take the glory. We’ll split the money. You get half, for now. I’ll reduce my cut when it gets too big, I don’t want the tax issues and I don’t need to be rich.

I have been amazed at the quality of writing I have seen and I am surprised no publisher beat me to it. Also quite pleased. A big name might offer to take over a title one day and if the author is okay with it, we should both profit. That’s all good. Leg Iron Books is not the lead singer in this band.

I’m the bassman.

The Pen is mightier than the Sword

…but it seems Le Pen is not as mighty as a Macaroon.

France has a pro-EU, Brussels puppet as its leader. Well, it’s what they voted for. I don’t know how much real power the French President has – don’t his pronouncements have to go through Parliament? I’ve no idea, perhaps one of the France-occupying readers can tell us. Not our problem, since the UK is now on a no-going-back route out of the EU. We’ve even been deleted from their propaganda leaflets.

At least there aren’t likely to be riots, at least not by the French. It seems clear in modern politics that one side always accepts losing a vote while the other side scream about voting being non-democratic because they didn’t get what they wanted. Then they have protests to overturn the vote in the name of democracy. These are usually violent.

It’s always the same sides too.

It’s rather like the Church of Climatology’s thought process. It gets a little warmer, that’s global warming. It gets unusually cold, ‘weather is not climate’. In the same way, Socialism only recognises democracy if they win the vote.

This kind of doublethink is endemic now.

I bought New Scientist this week. First time for ages. There is a feature article about air pollution. Apparently, at least in the West, it’s not so bad. China, India, Bangladesh… well they are effectively going through their industrial revolution phase and that’s always messy. The cities in those countries get smog like London used to get. Pretty pointless pushing to ban smoking there – but they do anyway.

The article carries a chart showing causes of death. Predictably, smoking is near the top. What’s interesting is that nowadays, nobody just dies any more. Everyone dies of something that could have been prevented if only the NHS could force them to live pure lives. It seems based on the premise that if we remove all risks from life, nobody will ever die again. Except… of boredom.

While the article shows a rapid fall in air pollution in the UK, the editorial laments the UK government’s failure to tackle air pollution. It’s headed with a picture of a smoggy street which is quite clearly not in the UK. The cars are on the wrong side of the road and the no-parking lines are red, not yellow.  They didn’t even bother to spend five minutes with Photoshop to make it half-convincing. What really hurts is that PhD level scientists will read that crap and not question it.

The editorial calls for some kind of legally-enforced action from the government while the article claims all major atmospheric pollutants are in decline in the UK’s air.

I don’t mean the smoke from half a gram of burning leaves. I mean properly toxic stuff. The UK’s air is getting cleaner. Remember that when the new anti-motorist regulations come into force so that the Green Men can breathe pure air in the cities. I’m glad I don’t live in one.

We now have the latest big push from antismoking to classify vaping as smoking. It’s clearly not smoking. For one thing there’s no smoke. No tobacco either. It’s getting to where rechargeable batteries and USB connectors are likely to be classified as tobacco products – and politicians all over the world can’t seem to understand why they are now openly ridiculed. If there is one thing more likely to see you more universally despised than being a smoker, it’s becoming a politician.

The antismokers say they want us to stop smoking but only using their approved methods. You know, the ones they get paid to push. Not some independent method that’s been shown to work for an awful lot of people, oh no, can’t have that.

“Nicotine is ‘addictive and deadly’. To help you escape its clutches we’ll sell you patches and gum loaded with… nicotine.”

What they really want is to get you ‘addicted’ to their own nicotine delivery method, so they can cash in.

Warnings on cigarettes, warnings about the alleged addictiveness of nicotine on vaping gear… seen any warnings on the patches and gum? Of course not. Seen any public shouting about people under 18 getting hold of patches and gum? Neither have I.

Approved nicotine is magically safe to prescribe. Non-approved nicotine is deadly and will kill you along with everyone in a 100-metre radius. Every time a smoker lights up in public we are like slow motion suicide bombers. That is what modern medicine, and our Governments, actually believe.

Really. They genuinely believe it. In the old days, schools used to teach chemistry and anyone from those days will have no trouble finding the chemical structure of nicotine. It’s a simple molecule. The nicotine in patches is the same as the nicotine in tobacco. The same as the nicotine in vape steam.

I’m still amazed no doctor has been charged with attempted murder for prescribing nicotine patches after telling us it’s deadly and addictive. Why hasn’t that happened? It’s wide open, that goal.

You know, some vapers don’t even have nicotine in their steam. Some have found that it’s the action of smoking they like. The taste, blowing smoke rings, all that stuff. The nicotine isn’t really necessary. I’ve tried it in my own Electrofags. Nicotine isn’t the biggest part of smoking, it’s the taste and the action that matters. That’s why Electrofag has worked for so many people. Not for me, not yet. The strange flavours are a lot of fun but I haven’t found a tobacco flavour that tastes just right. Maybe one day.

It must be difficult to keep a war on smokers and a war on motorists going at the same time. A war on all forms of transport, in fact, other than electric Noddy cars and trains made by Hornby. They have to ramp up the same pretend risks for both wars without anyone questioning how you can die twice. They seem to be managing this quite well because the general public have failed to notice.

There have been several Dalek and other alien invasions of Earth. Remember those? Nobody does, and in subsequent episodes the Doctor puts it down to the human ability to blot out anything that doesn’t fit their worldview.

He’s right. Humanity is easily controlled. Has been easily controlled for a very long time. It’s a herd. The oft-used sheep analogy is not misplaced. Those of us who won’t run with the herd are treated as anomalies and freaks – and perhaps we are. We like it that way.

Some of us will always refuse to obey. Some of us will snarl back at the sheepdogs. Some of us will remember and write it down for the future’s annoying buggers to know they are not alone.

The pen is, still, mightier than the sword.

Just watch out for macaroons…

Mirth and relaxation

The Daily Mail is giving away a free anti-stress colouring book today. I’d say their regular readers need something to take their mind off the over-hyped high-bloodpressure stuff they invent for printing every single day. Perhaps some of the photos of compo-claimants doing ‘Mail face’ could be reduced to line drawings. I can do that for them if they like.

The irony of the Daily Mail giving away an anti-stress thing is not lost on me.

Today they had the story of Nicky Caviar claiming the Tories saw a disastrous defeat in local elections in Scotland. It wasn’t spin, it was the lies of a blinkered idiot. They had their best result in a generation and scored a load of new seats. There was no Tory candidate where I am but it seems the SNP are on the run. A Tory majority in the Scottish Government? That’s really not very likely at all but it seems it might not be impossible. Still, my money is on the Lib Dems or Labour to wipe out the SNP. next time round Scotland isn’t ready for Tories.

Deep breaths. Relax.

Anti-stress has never been a problem for me. You are reading stuff written by the guy who got so pissed that he fell over, cracked two ribs and bashed a kidney and peed blood for three days before thinking ‘Yeah, maybe I should call a doctor.’ Meanwhile I continued laying a laminate floor in the kitchen…

They kept me in hospital all night! Waste of time and resources. I was back at work (the janitor job) after two days off. So yeah, I don’t stress easily.

CStM regards the adult colouring books as relaxing. I… can’t. One slip over the line and that page will be torn out and burned. I tried adult dot-to-dot with pictures of over 400 dots. Nearly drove me insane. Where the hell is dot 292? Why is 293 on the other side of the page? They did make impressive pictures, but I could have strangled the dotmeister many times.

My best mode of relaxation is the old Doom computer game. I also like Quake and Descent but can’t get them to run on the new machine yet. Those games are really relaxing.

Doom is great. Everything that moves is trying to kill you. No decisions necessary. If it moves, kill it. My favorite weapon is the double barrelled shotgun. I use the rocket launcher against the cyberdemon because it’s the best way to kill that bugger and it’ll take about 50 rockets to do it. I have used the BFG when I want a quick finish, but for real sighs of satisfied relaxation you can’t beat walking right up to a Hellknight and putting three shots of two barrels right into him.

Of course I cheat. I’ve been watching politics long enough to pick up how it’s done. In early versions of Doom, before it became 3D, type IDDQD to become indestructible. IDCLIP lets you walk through walls but you can’t pick anything up until you type it again to turn it off. The TAB key gets you the map and you need that with IDCLIP so you don’t walk off the game.

Going back through areas I’ve already been in, I can’t help a sigh of satisfaction at the mound of corpses. The irritating fuckers are all dead, and as I think John Wayne’s character Rooster Coburn once said, ‘There ain’t nothing so peaceful as a dead man’.

CStM and probably a few other people relax by colouring in flowers. I relax by killing everything that moves. Without resorting to any of the bigger weapons available.

CStM has suggested I stay well away from psychiatrists. My son has declared me unfit to own a shotgun.

What the hell. I have a bow and a good supply of arrows.

I don’t get many visitors…