30.1.06

AV Paradiso

The last couple of months, I've worked on a virtual plethora of AVs.

Most of them have been the usual corporate hand jobs. Most of them also started out as well written scripts, till the clients decided to indulge in some mental ejaculation.

Some of them have, however, survived to serve some constructive purpose. Thanks to which, I discovered some new music, worthy of being on "repeat".

Red Warrior and Spectres In The Fog, from The Last Samurai OST, and
North, by Afro Celt Sound System.

Also tuned into this old timey Vegas type lounge singer called Perry Como, who does a decent version of Roberta Flack's Killing Me Softly.

Give them a whirl, if you have the time.

27.1.06

Skip to my loo

This tale stems from the fact that I spent most of Sunday (yesterday) scrubbing my loo. If that doesn't grab you, check back in week or so for a fresh post. For the masochistic few who persevere, don't say I didn't warn you.

On with the tale.

I've spent many a Sunday indulging in my Calvinistic, OCD fueled pursuit of getting 10 year old bathroom tiles back to their original glossy whiteness. Pril detergent and a stiff bristled brush work, but are extremely labour intensive. So this time around, in a fit of consumerism, I bought something called Tile Power. It said that all I had to do was spray it on, wait a bit, and rinse it off.

I sprayed.

I waited.

While waiting, I departed from the prescribed course of action, and read the fine print on the back of the bottle.

Big mistake.

There were the usual wild promises about how this product would change my life forever, enhance my libido, make me a millionaire overnight, solve world poverty, and hunger and - incidentally - remove all traces of mildew, soap scum and White House Foreign Policy from my bathroom tiles.

It also had this unbelievable gem "Caution: Use in a well ventilated area."

Excuse me?

Now I'm no rocket scientist, but even I know that if the bathroom was well ventilated, I wouldn't have fucking mildew in the first place.

They should have warnings about reading warnings. Because after this little masterpiece, and having spent more time than is wise getting all warm and cosy with bleach fumes, I laughed - hysterically - for the next 20 minutes. Which only led to more inhalation of the aforesaid fumes.

I guess the guy who wrote this also came up with those other masterpieces: Military Intelligence and Corporate Social Responsibility.

And if you were wondering what happened to the bathroom...

Eventually, I rinsed.

It didn't work.

Cricket For Dummies

Cricket is a game invented by a British think tank made up of the blokes who invented the world’s first laundry detergent, and the blokes who invented beer. Which is why all 11 men in a cricket team traditionally wore white flannels. And then larked about on a lush green field, brandishing various equipment of wood and leather, with another team of 11 identically clad men, till the local pub opened.

Naturally, being men, they wanted this state of affairs to last for as long as possible. The maximum time they could put in generating heaps of dirty clothes, and getting thoroughly sozzled at the end of the day, without winding up paying alimony, was 5 days. This was the ultimate test of a wife’s patience, which is why a 5 day match was henceforth called Test cricket.

Things were fine, until the Americans invented a place called Las Vegas.


Las Vegas is the home of casinos, bordellos, the mafia, and the instant marriage. The instant marriage gave birth to the instant divorce, which was nurtured into acceptable litigation, by a couple of ambulance chasers, in the nearby town of Reno.

Now, British women felt decidedly left out of this entire period of liberation. However, being more civilized than their colonial cousins, they decided on a course of action that didn’t involve going to court. They invented a new form of cricket. This version of the game allowed men to spend just one day dirtying uniforms, followed by a single evening of getting sozzled at the local. Hence, these came to be known as One Day matches.

The advent of One Day matches coincided beautifully with the advent of washing machines.

Women discovered that washing machines could never get whites as white as they should be, but they were damned if they were going back to doing cricket flannels the good old way. So, they forced men to wear gaudy coloured uniforms on the field. To help men adjust to this distinct lack of taste, a large group of women got together, pooled in their discount coupons, and bought a piece of land near London. Admittance to this land was restricted to cricket players and spectators. And to make the men feel better, the ladies named it Lord’s.

Cut off from the general population, the British men soon got over their discomfort of being clad in outlandish costumes. And, in typical British fashion, having spent years in places they had no business being, they decided to set up cricket grounds across their colonies. They then made the mistake of chucking up the colonies, cricket grounds and all, and pissing off, back to their drizzly little isle.

In one of life’s delicious little ironies, the Brits then spent years and years being hammered to bits on cricket grounds around the world, by superb teams from the aforementioned colonies. To put it mildly, Australian, Indian and Pakistani cricket teams proceeded to do to the Brits precisely what the Brits had done to Australia, India and Pakistan, for a number of years. Needless to say, the Brits were unhappy about being hoist on their own sticky wickets.

So they burned the stumps. And sifted the remains. And came up with the Ashes. Which they spent next few decades dutifully sending across to Australia, with their best compliments. Until 2005, when the simple fact that there are at least 16 million descendants of Gengis Khan, came into play. 11 such descendants, with Brit passports, got together and beat the living daylights out of the Aussies.

The Brits, having given up on ever having an Ashes victory celebration, were delirious with joy. So delirious, that they spent an entire week without once regretting the re-election of Tony Blair.

Which just goes to show why they call cricket the Gentleman’s Game, and why Tony Blair never made the first 11 at Harrow.

24.1.06

Byker Blues

Fuck, I'm tired.

Work has been homicidal since July. And I'm pushing 30 so hard, it's about to start pushing back.

- no :) that's not a reference to you at all.

I feel like the best quote from Cocktail "The money is gone, the brain is shot, but the liquor, the liquor we still got."

Which i'm putting to the test, by knocking back a large cold rum.

Today was rough. No different from yesterday. And the week before that. And the weeks before that. And the months before that. And so on.

And my wife's away till Friday.

And it's been too long since I've hit the trail on Ole Hoss.

And what more do you need, for the blues?

I've had these 2 songs, one by Santana, and one by Afro Celt Sound system, on repeat for an hour now. The rhythmic thump of the sub must be driving my neighbours crazy.

And I've just noticed my glass is empty.

So, hasta manana, amigos. vaya con dios.

Sympathy for The Thing

The other day, I was indulging my passion for comic books. De-stressing (vicariously) this time through the antics of one pissed off green giant - The Incredible Hulk. And at the end of the issue was this little gem of a story starring The Thing.

Now I've never really been a fan of the Fantastic Four. I've always thought they were the lamest bunch of spandex afficionados around. The sole exception being one Benjamin J. Grimm a.k.a. The Thing. The Thing, to put it simply, rocks. He's big. And he hits hard. And goes easy on the soap opera stuff that infests so many comics these days.

Battle Royales between The Thing and The Hulk are legendary. And almost always involve gratuitous destruction of whatever bit of the world happens to be around them. This little story I discovered is an epilogue of sorts to one of the afore mentioned slug fests. And it is a beaut.

A brief synopsis; Nick Fury wants The Thing to stop The Hulk (again). So blue-eyed Benjy heads out into the desert with a regular issue grunt driver, to wait for Hulkie to show up. They while away the time with Benjy waxing eloquent on battles past. With a few gruff words of wisdom thrown in for the young grunt.

And in the course of his raconteuring, The Thing comes up wih this superb line, just prior to beating the shit out of some Asgardian Section 8 critter named The Wrecker. It goes something like this:

"In the immortal words of Mick Jagger... Please allow me to introduce myself, I'm a man of wealth and pain."

After which, in deference to an incipient hangover, The Thing whispers "Pssst... It's clobberin' time."

Needless to say, The Wrecker is soon in orbit.

As Benjy's ever-lovin' aunt Petunia would say... yer gots ta love it.

Vanity, thy name is byker.

I admit it. I'm vain enough to think a few posts from my old MSN Spaces blog are kinda funny. And, for purely selfish reasnos, I'd like to have them glorifying this one too. So, from now, once a day, I'l ctrl c and ctrl v a golden oldie. Rest assured, I'll be harsh. There are just a few that will make the cut.

21.1.06

French Fried

If you inhale this enough of this stuff, for long enough, it causes diffuse fibrous scarring of the lungs. Which means you suffer from shortness of breath, difficulty in breathing, and coughing. All of which get pogressively worse with time. (Given the chance, the scarring will do its best to ensure you depart this vale of tears.)

If you inhale enough of it, for long enough, it leads to pulmonary hypertension and immunological effects. (Neither of whom, if they were people, would make good neighbours.)

If you inhale enough of it, for long enough, it can cause lung cancer and mesothelioma - a rare cancer of the membranes lining the abdominal cavity and surrounding internal organs. And, increase the odds of your getting gastrointestinal cancer.
(Hello, my name is Reaper, I'm 6'2", love stygian black, have a pallid complexion, and play the scythe...)

If you smoke, and also happen to inhale this stuff, you're really fucked.

And, while you're reading this post, a whole shit load of this wonder substance is en route to India.

Welcome to the wonderful world of asbestos. There's a ship full of it headed our way, with best wishes from the French. It's a ship called the Clemenceau, and a few concerned people are trying to stop it. Read more about it here.

I haven't seen much about this in terms of posts, but then I'm not exactly the final authority on "what's up" in the Indian blogosphere. I do know I'm pissed off at the thought of a bunch of people - people who wimped out of two world wars - dumping their shit here.

17.1.06

Help keep this blog alive.

If you've dropped by here, riding the link from my old MSN Spaces blog, one thing oughta have struck you like a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster...

This blog is empty. It's barren.
It's suffering from extreme malnutrition.
Let's face it, it's on the brink of an untimely, unsightly demise.

If pics of the Time-LIFE variety, suitably heart rending, will move your emotions, more than my feeble prose, consider said pics inserted here.

Why? You may (or more likely, may not) ask.

Simply because I'm a copywriter at McCann Bangalore, where business is booming, and social lives are dying.
Dying horrid, unpleasant, Time-LIFE photo feature type deaths.
Deaths that have a drastic effect on blogs like this...

If you're a copywriter/art director, with at least 2 to 3 years of work experience, you can help.

Get in touch - my e-mail ids on the profile.
It's fine if you're not really looking for a change.
Let's chat anyway.

Do your bit. Save this blog from becoming just another statistic.

(Oh and by the way, if you know any servicing types who are hot shit, we need some of that kind as well.)

4.1.06

MSN Spaces sucks sideways

I used to write over at http://spaces.msn.com/members/byker7

read my last post to find out why I've shifted.