Frank Davis makes Smoky-Drinky a virtual reality

I haven’t yet tried this out but over at Frank Davis’s place there is a Smoky-Drinky bar online. And a new blog to go with it.

Hopefully my woeful internet connection can keep up with this kind of modern complexity. Lately it seems internet packets are being delivered by blind lame snails travelling the long way round. It’s a downside of living well clear of what passes for civilisation these days.

Anyway, I have to try. I might finally put faces to some of the names I’ve seen online over the years.

The madness of the modern world

Well, it’s here. The world is now officially insane.

Tessie May took her time about visiting the Grenfell site. That was indefensible, and she’s been rightly pilloried for it. However, she has not sought to blame anyone for the fire.

Labour on the other hand have used the tragedy to whip up local people into a frenzy. ‘It’s the Tory cuts!’ ‘May must resign.’ ‘Take to the streets to remove this government.’ Yes, that last one is real. They are officially fomenting rebellion over an accident.

When the Islamists blow up children or go on knife rampages in the streets, all the politicians on every side call for calm. Muslim leaders play the ‘we are the victims’ card while laughing at the kaffirs’ idiot leaders.

This fire was caused by a faulty fridge and was made so much worse because the building was covered in cheapskate cladding that let the fire spread very quickly indeed.

Sadiq Khan, already linked to the companies who supplied the non-fireproof exterior cladding for the building, is insisting the Government release the true number of people who died in the fire. There are even pretend reports that there is a D-notice on the casualty list. There isn’t. The Government cannot release that figure because they don’t know what it is yet – and might not know for weeks.

Searching a burned-out tower block is not something you can do in an afternoon. Every step has to be taken cautiously. One wrong step on the fifteenth floor and you might find yourself heading for the ground floor at considerable speed.

There are likely to be a lot more casualties in there. It is indeed a tragedy and I can understand that people who have relatives missing will want to know whether they are among those casualties. However, nobody can find that out quickly. Storming the council offices will not speed up the process.

Blaming the Tories is ridiculous, when one of the members of the board that ran that building is now the MP for the area. Yes, the Labour MP for a Labour constituency with a Labour council and Labour mayor. The Tories have no control here, they do not decide on how buildings are maintained, they were not in government when that tower block was commissioned and built and they did not order that cladding. It’s all Labour.

And yet it’s the Tories who are being blamed. They are strangely silent on this. It’s ordinary people who seem to be digging out the information here. Labour MPs and activists are using the deaths to incite people into a Tory-hating frenzy and it’s going to lead to riots. Why are the Tories silent on this?

There are two possible reasons that I can see. Maybe there are more but these two seem most likely.

One – the Tories are letting Socialism show its true, violent face. Letting Labour voters see what they have voted for. Then they can call another election and use footage of the incitement and riots all through their campaign. That would be a sensible, if callous, approach.

Two – and worse – there is still the Civil Contingencies Act. Labour’s ‘enabling act’ that was installed under the Blair/Brown government. The Tories didn’t put it there but it’s now available to them.

It’s basically the same as Hitler’s ‘enabling act’ that allowed his to take over as a de facto dictator. In the event of a national emergency, the government can take complete control. They no longer answer to the people, elections are suspended, the government can make emergency laws unopposed… you think this is a police state? Oh you haven’t seen anything yet!

Corbyn and co. have been stirring up a coup to overthrow the Government. Not in secret, they’ve been doing it on TV. May has a minority government who needs the support of a small hard-line party. She’ll have to cave in to some of their demands. They have her over a barrel and they know it. We don’t yet know what they’ll get but anything they get is going to send the socialist snowflakes into an apoplectic rage.

The EU is gleefully pressing to start Brexit talks and they are offering to take us back on an even worse deal than the one we’re leaving. They expect to clean us out before we go. This shouldn’t be a problem since Labour are also pro-Brexit so should be supporting the talks. However, they hate the Tories so much they are willing to send an army of maniacs onto the streets to start a war, and are still claiming they won the election with fewer votes and fewer MPs than the Tories.

If Corbyn gets his way, the streets of London will soon be out of control. If the EU get their way, those ‘austerity’ measures are going to look like ‘luxury’ measures. We’re going to be another Weimar republic after the EU is finished asset-stripping us. Money that is worth less than the paper (or plastic) it’s printed on.

With a minority government, May can’t restore order or keep any hold on the economy without invoking the Enabling Act that Blair/Brown put in place.

Then, the rounding up of the useful idiots who gave them total control will begin. Oh and Islam? They won’t need you any more either.

After that… it’s jackboots time. For all of us.

And who put this all in place, ready for this day? Hint: It wasn’t the Tories.

I bet they get the blame though.

Entertainment time – The Macbeth Trio

It has been some time since I last posted fiction (excluding all references to the Daily Mail). This one is a first draft. It might change, it might not, it depends whether I still like it tomorrow. One day though it will be in a collection.

It is fiction. Purely made up with no suggestion that it might be even remotely connected to reality. It was written in a few hours tonight and is not intended to be take seriously.

I have to say that part before I admit it was inspired by this, sent to me by   @Raven80504432 on Twitter.

I haven’t mentioned to Raven that I have had a large plastic raven flying in my house since last October. Synchronicity could raise its head here.

Anyway. To the story. Remember, it’s fiction. I just made it up. It’s probably not real.

Keep the tinfoil handy, just in case.

 

The Macbeth Trio

“Scrofula!” Doc Armitage banged the table. “That’s the next one.”

Doctor West pursed his lips. Turning to Doctor Smythe, he twirled his index finger beside his head.

“I’m serious.” Armitage rested his hands on the table and leaned forward. “It’s a not-so-deadly form of tuberculosis and we did that one a few years back. So we already have a vaccine that will probably work.” He straightened. “We can use the variant, Mycobacterium scrofulaceum, to claim we have to develop a new vaccine and even if we do have to, it’ll be a piece of piss.”

Smythe rubbed his finger alongside his nose. “I like it. We’re running out of diseases to make vaccines for. This one is rare but we can work with it.”

“Okay.” West steepled his fingers. “Let’s, for the moment, assume you both aren’t totally bonkers.” He held up his hand to forestall Armitage’s protests. “It’s a long shot, but let’s assume it anyway. How the hell do we get the population scared of a disease none of them have even heard of?”

“No problem.” Armitage folded his arms. “It’s related to tuberculosis, often caused by the same bacterium. We blame it on the immigrants, as usual, and show pictures of the few immunocompromised patients who have had it fairly recently.”

“Without, of course, mentioning the severely immunocompromised part.” Smythe winked at West.

“Of course.” West rubbed his temples. “It’s starting to sound good, or maybe I’m just going as crazy as you two.” He looked up. “Same procedure?”

“Yes indeed.” Armitage nodded. “We start up with stats showing this long forgotten disease has begun to make a resurgence. We use percentages so nobody catches on that our four cases became six to give us a 50% increase. Like we did with necrotising fasciitis. Then we start talking about the possibility of 100 new cases in the next century and as with mad cow disease, hardly anyone will notice that’s one case a year.”

“There’s one thing though.” West took a deep breath. “People don’t know scrofula. They’ll look it up. They’ll find out how rare it is. We don’t have the control we had with our own inventions – BSE and necrotising fasciitis and AIDS and so on. They’ll see through this one fast.”

“You’re right.” Smythe tapped his pen on his notepad. “We’ll need some ground work first. Edit Wikipedia and lock it with our version, get our own sites written and up to the top of every search. Get the official NHS and other medical sites on board too. We can afford it. We just need to get our versions in before we mention scrofula to the public. Then when they look it up, they’ll see what we want them to see.”

West shook his head. “We can’t edit every medical textbook.”

“Nobody reads the print ones any more anyway.” Armitage grinned. “And you’re wrong, you know. Most of those books are online or available as eBooks and we can edit them easily. They’ll even update the ones already downloaded onto every device out there. Let the print books carry the truth under a layer of dust. We can edit history and nobody will notice.”

West sat in silence for long minutes. He started to speak a few times but lapsed into thought again. The other two watched him, silent too. West was the one with the final say on this idea.

“It can work.” West said.

Smythe and Armitage high-fived each other.

“Okay.” West reached for the coffee pot and refilled his cup. “This one is going to take a lot of setting up. Smythe, get started on those disinformation sites right away. Armitage, start getting your lab ready for the volunteers. We say nothing about this outside this room until all mention of scrofula on the web is ours. Okay?”

Both nodded assent. Smythe scribbled notes on his pad.

“Then we claim scrofula is on the rise and as before, we blame it on immigrants.” West ducked his head to hide his smirk. “Poor buggers. The socialists invite them in and we capitalise on them. If only they knew.”

“The socialists have a narrow view of life.” Armitage raised his eyebrows. “They are easily manipulated, that’s why socialism uses them. Their leaders will never realise that all they’ve done is point out who can be manipulated.”

“Yeah, yeah, we’re not here for politics. This is far more important, it’s about money.” West waved his hand. “Next, Armitage, you call for volunteers as usual. You’re looking for carriers, of course, asymptomatic infectors, as always. The ones who get sick, cure them, send them home with a fat wad of cash. The ones who don’t but who are infectious, you ‘cure’ with a placebo and let them loose. The big payoff means you’ll get volunteers from all over the country so you get the best spread.”

“Works every time.” Smythe looked up from his notes. “It spreads, maybe a dozen or more get infected and then millions come looking for a vaccine.”

“All helped by the hysterical press. What would we do without them?” Armitage clasped his hands.

West laughed before speaking. “The tinfoil hat lot will be on about population reduction and saving the planet from humanity again. Every time. They can’t seem to grasp that we don’t give a shit about any of that. We just want the money.”

“It’s almost too easy. We use the same techniques over and over and nobody notices,” Armitage said. “But then antismokers, antibooze, anti salt, sugar, all of them use the same methods and nobody’s noticed that either.”

“People are dim.” West leaned back in his chair. “Most just want an easy life, no challenges, no hard parts. Offer to take the hard parts away and they’ll come running.” He stood. “Well, I think we have a new project. Let’s get moving and call this meeting closed.”

Smythe looked up from his notes. “When’s the next one?”

Armitage laughed aloud. “I think you mean, ‘when shall we three meet again?’ eh?”

______________________

 

If you don’t get the reference in the last line, I have to say ‘Macbeth’ to you

 

The Procrastinator

I thought I was good at procrastinating but Tessie May is a master of it. She seizes on every opportunity to not do what she was voted in to do.

Look, we can’t go back into the EU now. This is what we face if we do –

The European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator, Guy Verhofstadt, struck a harsher tone: Britain, he said, could change its mind, but it would be poorer.

“Like Alice in Wonderland, not all the doors are the same. It will be a brand new door, with a new Europe, a Europe without rebates, without complexity, with real powers and with unity,” Verhofstadt said.

If we go back now they’ll gut this country. They’ll tear out the heart of it and feed it to the dogs. And yet there are so many who want that to happen. How the hell do the young think their future will be improved by adding leeches to it?

Get us the hell out of there, now.

____

In other news, the mower is running again but permanently at full speed. It needed to be at full speed today because the grass was long and wet and even with the motor at full tilt, it choked three times. I have new governor springs ordered which should help. The machine is about 25 years old now.

I have cut three lawns, one more left to do, but I had to run it without the grass box or it would choke every few minutes. So there was a lot of raking up afterwards.

No chance of hay. If I’d left this stuff I’d have had a lot of bad silage tomorrow.

I hope we get enough fine weather that I don’t have to deal with this amount of grass too often!

You can Brexit any time you like, but you can never leave

I corrupted this song before. I make no excuse. I like this song.

This is a first go. It’s late, I’m tired and might improve on this tomorrow.

Or I might not.

The EU Slaverama (with more apologies to the Eagles)

On a cold rainy island
At the edge of Europe
The people wanted their freedom
So they all had a vote

With the future now settled
The MPs promised the truth
But then they said we have to vote again
A shock result, did they goof?

Both sides claimed they had won it
One side is insane
The other side isn’t quite as mad
But self-important and vain

So they call in remainers
To head their ‘leaving’ talks
The peoples’ voices matter not at all
The spin is obvious balls

Welcome to the EU’s Slaverama
Such a lovely fate (such a hungry fate)
Such a deadly fate
We’re all blowing up in the EU Slaverama
What a nice surprise
It’s all based on lies

Their minds are tax-funded twisted
They think their voters are dim – huh
They laugh to see they still get voted in
Promising naught but spin

Now we have no parliament
Just bickering twats
Just to keep us distracted
They’ll most likely tax fat

Now they’ve brought in the Gove man
Soft in Brexit and head
Cameron revives his sad lament
We’d all be better off dead

And now those Brexit voices
Sound far away
The winners of the final vote
But no-one hears them say

Save us from the EU Slaverama
Such an awful place (such corrupted states)
We really want out of the EU Slaverama
If you want to stay (if you’re that insane)
Please just move away

Mirrors to distort views
Deep lies within lies
And she said – You are all just prisoners here
Smile and say it’s all nice

In the EU chambers
The talks begin today
There’s only one on the menu
And its name is May

The voters stay in the shadows
Hoping for a change
Hoping honest politicians will
Take their home back again

Relax said the EU
We are programmed to deceive
You can Brexit any time you like
But you can never leave.

Sadly, that’s how it’s going. King Charles III will most likely preside over his namesake’s kind of England, I fear.

 

Lawnmower Man

It’s been raining for a while. Add together 18 hours of daylight every day and constant watering and the lawns are a rabbit buffet that will never run out. I need more rabbits.

Today wasn’t too bad so I wheeled out the lawnmower. A petrol one, Briggs and Stratton engine for those who care. It had been playing up lately so I bought a carburettor fixing kit and sorted it out. It cost less than £3.

I’ve fixed car carburettors before (back when they existed), both fixed jet (Cortina, often) and variable jet (Mini). The primitive lawnmower one was easy. It really is very primitive indeed.

It ran perfectly… for about 15 minutes. Then it died.

Took out the spark plug – covered in soot. Okay, fuel mix is too rich, how do I adjust it? Answer – I can’t. This little carb has no adjustments. Cleaned and regapped the plug and it fires up, then stops. Brrm-brrm-nah.

Well, buying a completely new carburettor will only cost £20. I could give up and do that. I could, but it would be an admission of failure. This primitive little engine really doesn’t have that much to it.

So off I went to YouTube for some help. It’s full of videos about the exact same problem, it seems to be common. The one tip I found that nobody else mentioned is that the gasket can creep back between the two fixing screws at the back of the fuel tank. A score line in the tank there will help it grip. Also, fit the O-ring and plastic retainer to the carburettor, not the air intake manifold. Nobody else mentioned that one.

Tomorrow I dismantle the mower again. I will try not to give in and just buy a carburettor but it’s a race against time here. The grass is fast reaching the point where it wipes your arse as you cross the lawn and I really need to mow the drive. It’s starting to look like something David Attenborough would drive along.

So this thing has had a carb overhaul, a new air filter and spark plug, a new paint job (courtesy of Son who rescued it from its final rusting place in the shed) and it worked well for a while. Now it has decided to be a difficult git.

I think the grass has bribed it.

Mark Ellot Month

I’ve been trying to learn Danish and CStM has been learning Welsh. The common ground we have is the frequent exclamations of ‘What the hell is wrong with this insane language?’

Welsh, of course, is a sensible and logical language . Danish makes no sense at all.

When I was growing up, 3:30 was ‘half past three’. Easy. There was a momentary hiccup when I came to Scotland where they don’t have time to say it all so they just call it ‘half three’. I soon got the hang of this because leaving out the extra word saves whisky drinking time.

In Danish, 3:30  is ‘half four’. Not half past. Halfway to. This has caused a little confusion.

Worse, when you want to say 3:25 you’d say either ‘three twenty-five’ or ‘twenty-five past three’, right? Not the bloody Vikings. They say ‘five minutes to half four’. No wonder they all buggered off in ships all over the world. They weren’t raiding, they were looking for a sensible language.

If I am asked the time in Denmark I’ll just show them my watch.

The number system… Oh I’ll leave that for another time. My head hurts.

It’s Mark Ellot’s turn for publication again this month. His collection of short stories, ‘Blackjack’, is now in format for print and awaiting cover images and final checking. Two weeks tops before this one is finished – and it’s mostly thanks to Roobeedoo giving it a first pass while I was working on Margo Jackson’s ‘The Mark’.

It’ll be a touch over 200 pages so around the £5 mark for print again. Cheaper for the eBook, naturally. I was going to say ‘about half that price’ but the Danish stuff in my head says ‘No, they’ll think you’re planning to charge a tenner!’ It’ll be around £2.50-ish.

The cover image will be constructed by me, and this one should be a good one. I have proper photographic background sheets now, and all the bits needed to put the cover together. I’m gradually becoming a cover art star – I’m on the first Underdog Anthology and on Margo’s cover too. One day my face will appear, probably on a Halloween one.

Meanwhile, Mark Ellot’s  ‘Ransom‘ has had a makeover. New front cover and interior typos fixed. Amazon have, at last, updated their sales copy so if you have one with the old cover it’s now officially a rare book. If you have a signed one with the old cover, then when he gets famous you’ll be rich. If he keeps this up he will be, so encourage him!

Here’s the new cover, much the same as the old cover but with the mundanity extracted and a bit of drama added :

Monochrome apart from the computer screen. I like it, at least I like it a lot more than the old straight office shot. The cover for ‘Blackjack’ will be in full colour, not least because I’m using my fancy inlaid table for this one. I have to do a lot of work to shine up this table but I think the worn look will be best for the cover. It’s meant to be a well used card table.

I’ll have more books in Dutch coming up and more in English, maybe even one in Danish if I ever get the hang of the language that Satan still chuckles about inventing.

Don’t forget the Halloween Anthology. Number ‘Tree’ 😉

I’m scouting for stories for that one now. Treeskull is definitely a go and I want to be ready ahead of time so I’m looking to close submissions on October 1st at the latest. Send them in around August/September to be in it. Halloween based, no need to force in trees or skulls. I’ll take care of that.

Number Four could be a Christmas one, if I get enough in. There are some already, from the failed one last Christmas. I could probably fill it myself with re-used stories but I don’t want to be the main event in these anthologies. The whole point of Leg Iron Books is to publish new authors, make them famous, and hope they remember me when they are lounging in their infinity pools in Barbados.

I don’t want to be famous but I’d quite like to be rich. Please help this man become a capitalist.