Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Dare to be a Daniel

LONGTIME Toasty-watchers (easily recognised by their burnt noses and continual nervous tremor) will recall that my Futon was originally unrolled at http://toastyboy.blogspot.com but had to be deleted in November 2005 due to snow on the points at Volvograd or some such piffle. (Wasn't there a menacing email typed in human blood by Mad Frankie Fraser's sister or something? Everything's a blur after so many years of skull/breezeblock interaction therapy.)

My first plan after the fuss died down was to reinstate the blog at the same address, but pesky old Blogger wouldn't let me, which I assumed meant the URL was out of bounds to the entire human race until the end of time, like Kenneth Williams's bathroom. So I lugged my futon across to this dump and started again with only the barrel I stood up in.

But what do I find now, after a mere eighteen months' absence in Papua New Guinea or wherever the hell I've been?

My quondam bijou pied-à-terre at http://toastyboy.blogspot.com has been wrenched open and infested by a slouching, unwashed answer-to-an-iron-maiden's prayer that chooses to call itself DANIEL.


So what do we know of this creature?

• It purports to be aged 14. Then again, so do most of us, at least when threatened with action for breach of promise or auditioning for Wanna Be A Celebrity? Then Lick This Vat Of Electrified Treacle! on BBC3, so we can't knock it for that.

• It claims to like sports. And who would be so cynical as to accuse it of being insufficiently specific? I bet it enjoys nothing better than a hearty afternoon of lacrosse, netball, hare-coursing or extreme nude bobsleigh. It's just the sort.

• It says it likes cooking. So did Typhoid Mary.

• It likes hanging with friends. So did Mussolini.

• It’s not actually very good at getting round to writing its goddam blog. In fact it's utterly useless at it. It doesn't even try. It's a complete waste of space and natural resources. It should be POKED VERY HARD WITH A POISONED STICK until it GOES AWAY and STOPS JAYWALKING ON MY BOULEVARD OF BROKEN DREAMS.


Honestly. Can't turn my back for a moment.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Pour encourager les autres


Today's Edinburgh Evening News says there's to be "a worldwide campaign…to encourage dozens of new hotels to be built in Edinburgh."

About time too.

All too often lately I've met as-yet-unbuilt new hotels that seem to me to be doing damn all except sit on their enormous bottoms drinking cheap lager and claiming double invalidity credit and disabled ex-coastguard's plastic truss allowance - paid for, don't forget, by the likes of you and me, or do I have to be a taxpayer to say that?

When you suggest they should jolly well go and get themselves built somewhere, they just chortle and make unpleasant noises with their service entrances.

But they'll be laughing on the other side of their optional (mandatory) 85% staff gratuities now, won’t they?

When these campaigning johnnies hit the streets, with all their electric prods, gas bazookas and other "encouragement" equipment, why, those idle, greedy, lead-swinging as-yet-unbuilt hotels won't know what's hit 'em.

Just think what fun it'll be to watch the brutes being built - in Edinburgh - AGAINST THEIR WILL!!

Mind you, Middlesbrough might have been even better…

So, am I back now, you ask? Too early to say, really. Let's see how it goes, eh? Thanks for dropping by (Betty)…

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Pun Watch Extra

IT’S exactly 160 years since Karl Marx established the Communist Correspondence Committee (and most of their letters still haven’t arrived, due to industrial action).

What better way to celebrate than by Googling on ‘You have nothing to lose but your…’?

Among the stragglers, Danes, drains, grains, Janes and sprains are all wholly pathetic, with one hit each. Rains and trains clock up two, manes three, reins four, and gains five, but this isn’t the sort of showing we expect from a crew of brawny young unfunny puns who’ve always had a good diet and a supportive home.

Stains does better with ten, canes is finding its length with eleven, veins getting into its stride with thirteen and pains going for the burn with fourteen.

But alas, alas, we all knew how this was going to end, didn’t we? Way out in front – leaving every rival panting in the dust – protruding like the proverbial luminous sore thumb with rigor mortis – is the inevitable BRAINS.

Ha flipping pigging chiselling ha. No wonder everything’s being overrun by militant Islam.

As for such non-runners as cranes, Hussains, lanes, mains, McLeans, panes, plains, planes, refrains, reigns, skeins, Staines, strains, thanes, Twains, vanes, wains, Waynes and Zanes, I don’t know whether to be glad we don’t have to put up with them or sad that there’s so little originality left that people can’t even come up with puns that are merely halfway obvious.

Perhaps this barrel of absinthe will help me decide.


PLANS to develop student flats just a spliff’s throw from the popular nightclub Studio 24 have been given the go-ahead.

I think this is disgraceful.

The poor nightclub won’t be able to get a wink of sleep.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Pointing Percy at the Oubliette

These fourteen months have been cruelly lonely.

It’s a sad business when you’re the only blogger on Blogger whose interests include the xylophone.

That’s what I was when I started out. And that’s what I thought I remained.

Silly me!

If instead of wallowing under this duvet with three (dead) chorus girls and a signed photograph of Freddie ‘Parrot Face’ Davies for the past year-and-a-bit I had spent my time obsessively checking the Blogger listings like the rest of you, I would have known my isolation ended after just two months, when Percy Chanel came on the scene.

Percy is a 104-year-old male Virgo (oo-er, missis) located in Babooda, Honkoo Tonkoo, Bouvet Island. Among his other interests are ‘destroying piccolos and other wind instruments’, trainspotting and counting marbles.

Why, we’re practically soulmates.

Or so I thought before reading this brutally dismissive, Rhett-Butler-like avowal:


Well, as Larkin said, useful to get that learnt.

If we’re going to be all frank & harsh & candid, may I point out to Mister Chanel that I’ve written one hundred more postings than he has, and 700% more people have read my profile?

In fact, he’s written precisely ONE POSTING, whereas I’ve been sitting here at all hours, churning out deathless prose in industrial quantities while seldom pausing to eat, shave, or renew my subscription to the Illustrated Journal of Early Eye-Gouging Equipment.

But he must have something I haven’t, because look, Edward Gibson of Tip Top Equities has left him a 425-word comment, and he’s never posted so much as an epigram at Toasty’s Futon, despite my constantly emailing him and hanging around outside his house with boxes of chocolates and electric prods.

You must now imagine me pouting, and kicking a trash can.

Today’s Clues

(3) Botulism causes Nagasaki – deprave your cladding

{€} Earls’ tricycles occlude Paganini, one might hypothecate

]‰[ Lindy whistles a chocolate Valentine, Your Honour

$$$ The bonus has now risen to nineteen saveloys!!! $$$


12 April: The Dowager Lady Hesketh, former rugby correspondent of The Spectator, sacked by Boris Johnson in 1999. 15 April: Lord Eliot, surfer, busker and nude escapologist. 17 April: Peter Cadbury, test pilot, Nuremberg prosecutor and Rwandan gorilla owner, whose sole reason for pig-keeping was allegedly to annoy his neighbours, and who armed himself with a crossbow after burglars stole the gun he kept by his bed for shooting burglars.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Pun Watch

BRACE YOURSELVES for another NEW FEATURE on Toasty’s Futon, which will probably never appear again, like most previous new features on Toasty’s Futon

Where should we be without dear old, smelly old Google?

Not only does it help us keep track of the global epidemic of misspelling Brandeis and Johns Hopkins (so many pages now refer to ‘Brandels University’ and ‘John Hopkins University’ that someone ought to set them up and start dishing out honorary degrees) and to locate all those debtors and biblioklepts who’ve spent twenty years slithering away from us, it enables us for the very first time in history to measure LACK OF ORIGINALITY worldwide.

This morning, when I’d wearied of grinding used chewing gum into the pavement with the heel of my kinky boot, it occurred to me to feed a number of stale, obvious puns into Google’s maw and see what came out.

Santa’s Grotty showed up well with 389 hits, while Zorba the Geek achieved a spirited 556. Close Encounters of the Turd Kind (302) was left trailing by Close Encounters of the Bird Kind (784), itself outrun by Close Encounters of the ABSURD Kind (884).

I’d expected that dismal old standby Fangs for the Memory to carry all before it, but it clocked up only 775, following Bob Hope’s failure to come back from the dead as a vampire.

Desperate Houseplants, proud owner of 1,070 hits, was easily trounced by Walk on the Wilde side with 12,700 – but the outright, runaway, pardon-me-while-I-knock-a-nail-into-my-head winner was The Write Stuff with a staggering 558,000.

No doubt they all thought they were being original.

Surprisingly, The Greatest Tory Ever Sold had only four hits to show for itself.

And there were no hits at all for Ten Gays That Shook The World. Though there’ll be one now, of course.

My own little pellet of mediocrity, donated to the web. Aaaahhh.


3 March: Ivor Cutler, author of Many Flies Have Feathers, Life in a Scotch Sitting Room Volume 2 and A Sheet Metal Worker is Approached by Ivor Cutler, among whose recreations in later life was ‘dishing out sticky labels to deserving persons’ with slogans such as ‘Add 15 inches to your stride and save 4½ per cent of insects’; of whom Laurie Taylor said, ‘He’s been alternative so long that it is impossible to specify the reality from which he originally departed.’ 8 March: George Sassoon, piano-accordionist and investigator of extra-terrestrial phenomena, who reputedly learnt Serbo-Croat in two months and kept a consignment of heavy water in his home. 13 March: Robert Baker, inventor of the chicken nugget. 25 March: John Letts, who invented, but did nothing about, a machine for fixing telephones to flat surfaces, a gadget for stapling buttons to shirts, and a pornographic game of Monopoly. 26 March: Michael Bateman, who ‘looked like Steve McQueen and laughed like Deputy Dawg’ and was sacked from the Daily Herald for throwing bread rolls at a Lord Mayor’s banquet.

Sad to report that Dr Alan Rankin, better known to connoisseurs of my sidebar as Alabamah and deepsix, died on 28 March, well before his time.

I think of the roar of ‘REXUS MINIMUS!’ with which he’d greet me (odd, that, as the name’s Toasty); the gift of Lewis Carroll’s Symbolic Logic ‘because you’re the only person I know who’d appreciate it’; the glimpses of a past more colourful than most; his smiling vigour (and continued ready interest in others) when clearly in pain towards the end.

To quote our mutual buddy Kriss Robb: ‘An adventurer, a wiseman and a priest – worthy of a Viking’s send-off.’

Leith will not easily forget him, as Peter’s readers already know.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Slave To The Meme

7 things I’d like to do before I die.

Escape from this giant zip-up pencil-case.

7 things I can’t do.

Inhale and exhale simultaneously.

Fly through corned beef.

Walk down the street without twitching and holding on to roadsigns.

7 things that attracted me to my partner.

Her lack of discrimination.

7 things I often say.

Don’t be concerned, it’s just a side-effect of medication.

The spiders, the spiders!

7 films.

Sand and Gravel Extraction

Les Parapluies de Biggleswade

Salo: 120 Days of Yes Dear, Very Nice

7 books.

How Bletchley Cracked The Green Cross Code

How to operate your Betamax Cartridge Pop-Sideways Toaster

What to do in a major chemical leakage (= turn to froth)

7 memes.

List your aunts, in descending order of tediousness.

Write a story about a pencil sharpener (minimum 3,000 words).

Only Post If You Have Something Interesting To Say.

(It’ll never catch on.)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Melodies for sick minds

MAY God smite and pulverise SupertonicCDs.com for putting Beautiful Child by Eva McIntyre at the top of their ‘Pick of the Month’ list.

This is what happens when you let go of the idea of moral and aesthetic standards: people start praising a clapped-out old fishwife who couldn’t even get herself a gig at the Frontier Club, Batley.

Blimey, if we’d known this was how the world was going to end up, we wouldn’t have bothered to pour our life’s blood into initiating sub-sub-sub-committees of the General Synod to examine abstruse questions of liturgiology.

All I can say about Beautiful Child is, don’t buy it, don’t play it, don’t talk to anyone about it, lest you initiate a drip-drip-drip of corruption that leads to Barlinnie and the more debauched and abandoned corners of MY FLAT.

But I know you’re all gagging to see that picture of the old bag again, so here it is:

And look, it’s even bigger this time.

Let no one say Toasty’s Futon doesn’t maintain its traditions.

P.S. From this webpage it would appear that Eva is every bit as old as we always suspected, and indeed was working at a hospital in Nebraska at the time of the Wall Street Crash. Oho, it’s all coming out now…

NEWS FLASH! Eva celebrated Valentine’s Day by dining (on her own, no doubt) at the Ibex in Main Street, Chaddleworth, Berks. But their hospitality has been ill repaid – she’s gone and published a rave review here. Talk about the kiss of death. No right-thinking person will set foot in the place again. ‘I'm looking forward to a repeat visit!!’ she drivels. The evacuation of Chaddleworth is in progress.

Previous briefings on Eva McIntyre

All About Eva
Throw Away The Key