24 Feb 2010

Duke Fandango: Better When Pressured.

There are times when the pressure becomes almost too much. When my life seems to become a dizzying leap from one terrifying moment of 'must act or fail' to another. When everything else becomes a facsimile of importance. Things like a social life, or a girlfriend, or remembering to phone your mum on her birthday. Things that actually matter and will cause untold damage to your standing as person.

The terrible thing is, I live for those moments.

At the time I hate it. I moan lots. I swear more. I contemplate getting an office job. I have been known to flick idly through the jobs pages of the paper looking the the pay an office lackey gets and saying "£25,000 for looking at Facebook?! Score!" but something always holds me back.

I've decided that it is my intolerance of humanity, coupled with my mild ADHD that would prevent me from ever getting an office job. Can you imagine it:

Them: Hey, Duke - we need the report on the projected Austin account by twelve - you FYI'd on that?

Me: What the fuck is 'FYI'd' and why do I give a shit about the Austin account?

Them: Look, Dukey - mind if I call you Dukey?

Me: Say it again and I will hold a candle of hatred for you until the day I die.

Them: Great. Well Dukey, we need the Austin account to balance the TPF stock orders and without them we're back to the Tobin Spectrum of estimated recall. And that, Dukey, would be awful!

Me: I'm going strangle you with my mouse

Them: Dude, It's wireless.

Me: I know...

I need the absolute challenge of actually making choices that will have a genuine social effect. That will make the young people in my charge better individuals with better life chances so they can have the opportunity to actually do what they want to with their lives.

Now, I'm not saying that I'm making life or death decisions. I'm not a doctor or a nurse. I'm rarely found rushing with the ol' blues and twos to arrest a serial killer. If I'm honest I'd be rubbish at fighting fires because I spend far too much time pissing about with the hose:

Me: Hey, Frank!

Frank: Yeah?


Frank: Muummphhh!!!

Me: Heh heh heh.

But what I do is to tell a group of young people that they are better, much better, than they ever thought they could be. I can teach them to respect others. To not judge. To be someone who stands up against the accepted wisdom and say 'this is wrong'. To have faith, both in themselves and in others around them. To be happy.

But to make them do these things I need to do my bit. To be pressured. To get the billion and one bits of paperwork completed. To basically, give a fuck.

And if I don't, I don't lose a faceless corporation money. I don't lose the respect of the general public. Hell, I probably won't lose my job.

I'd just lose the life chances of a group of teenagers for them.

And I'd never be able to live with that.

21 Feb 2010


I believe in Karma. No, really I do. I believe that a good person will have good things happen to them. Likewise a bad person will have horrible things happen to them.

But I'm at a loss to figure out what it is that I've done to piss Karma off so much.

Put simply, I've broken another finger playing rugby.

Some people make it through a good number of years of playing without any kind of break. I break two fingers three months apart.

At this rate my hands are going to be as effective as the Tiny Tim Long Jump team.

They will also look like the gnarled twistings of a Baobab tree as drawn my MC Escher after a heavy night on the mescalin.

At least I can do some kind of old school horror acting with my newly formed claw like mits. It'd be a laugh that. Living in a castle. Having a servant called Igor. Creeping up on virgins in the middle of the night...actually no, that'll get me fired and the Duchess will shout at me. Lots.

So I say 'fuck you' karma. I'd raise my fingers to you, but it hurts.

18 Feb 2010

Beer? Motorway? Golf Buggy? Welshman?

Last Saturday Andy Powell, Welsh international, celebrated his team's win by having a few beers. Obviously this would be the case for any half decent Rugby team. Also it is fairly true that these celebratory drinks can - at times - spiral out of hand.

We call them 'Beerventures'.

In Andy Powell's case his beerventure ended up with him being arrested on the M4 motorway driving a golf buggy absolutely pissed out of his taffy skull. What sequence of events led up to this point may well never be known (well, until he cynically produces an autobiography). The point is that in a moment of pure brilliance (or stupidity) Powell took the step from mindless drunken behaviour to beerventure.

You may well ask 'what constitutes a beerventure and how do I know I've had one?' Well fear not dear reader. I have produced a guide.

The Duke Fandango Guide to BEERVENTURES!

Every now and then whilst drinking, a number of complex factors balance each other out to create the optimum conditions for beerventures. This can be expressed using the equation:

Intoxication [times] Mates Egging You On [divided by] Basic Motor Skills = Beerventure.

Put simply you need to have the requisite amount of alcohol coursing through your body to completely remove your usual inhibitions and a group of mates yelling 'go on, it'll be fucking funny' whilst still retaining the ability to coordinate your limbs to operate things like ticket machines, steam trains, gates to fields, tin openers etc.

Beerventures usually happen in a state of semi-consciousness. When you wake up the next day you will most likely not remember much about it. There will however, be a number of clues to help you piece together what happened:

You wake up in a field.

You wake up in a field in another county.

You wake up in a field in Poland.

You wake up in a field in Poland with a Swastika tattooed on your forehead, an Ox heart in one hand and your trousers around your ankles.

You wake up in your bed...which is in a field.

You wake up on a cargo ship bound for the Philippines and everyone starts referring to you as Manuel.

You wake up on a roundabout stark-bollock-naked. On the A3. At around nine AM.

You wake up in what you assume to be a prison cell but through your blurry vision you notice the chains on the walls and the 25 inch pink dildo cemented to the floor. There is the strong smell of baby oil.

You wake up in hospital covered in jam and bee stings.

Once you shake yourself out of your alcohol induced catatonic state there are a series of steps you need to take to get your shit together.

Step 1: Finding out what happened.

Firstly check your phone. You may have texts/missed calls from your friends - this may give you a clue (especially if it says "Dude! Can't believe you stole that horse and rode it all the way to Exeter" or "You utter twat! Why did you sleep with my Gran/Sister/Girlfriend/Mum/Cuddly Toy I've had since childhood?") Also check the pictures. If you have a camera phone you may have photographic evidence of what happened. If these involve you stapling your nut sack to a giraffe then best get rid of them.

Step 2: Finding out where you are.

If the roadsigns are in a different language then you have had a monumental beerventure. Ask a local for directions to the nearest port. You will need to be wary of approaching just anyone as your beerventure could be the starting point for a small-scale diplomatic dispute. It is essential that you complete step 1 before any interactions with other people. If you jump headlong into conversation you could be asking someone for help whose fence you jumped last night, landed on their dog house and inadvertently killed 'Scruffles' the rare breed show dog that was the family's only source of income in these harsh economic times. They will probably want to kill you; you bastard.

Step 3: Getting Home.

You may be lucky and hitch a lift with a trucker. If this is the case you will only have to perform one act of oral sex. Be thankful that you can get that post-drinking taste out of your mouth. If not you may have to order a taxi/find a bus stop/buy a aeroplane ticket (depending on the extent of your beerventure).

Once you've done the above you will be able to look back in years to come and laugh about the events.

Unless you get arrested and sent to gaol. If this happens then you'll look back on your beerventure as the point your life started its downward spiral.

But when you decide to ride that golf buggy up on one of the nation's major roads you can say with pride in your heart and vodka in your stomach "I too am on a beerventure and I'm fucking a grapefruit!"

Andy Powell, you sir, are a legend.

15 Feb 2010

I take it all back...there is a god!

And that God has a fucking grade A sense of humour.

Point in case is the fact that the BNP has been forced by the Equality and Human Rights Commission to change it's admissions policy to allow non-whites to join.

For those of you who don't follow British politics all that closely allow me to explain. The BNP (or British National Party for those of you with an aversion to TLAs [Three Letter Abbreviations]) is a far-right bunch of racists whose central policy is the forced repatriation of all non-white people to their countries of origin.

The BNP is led by the cycloptic charisma-void, toad-faced and all round twat, Nick Griffin (pictured) who is without doubt the single most reprehensible life form to be forcibly ejected from a uterus since Salome. And at least she could dance.

Nick Griffin used to be a holocaust denier arguing that the numbers were a bit on the unbelievable side. Well Nick - that's why it's the single greatest tragedy to face humanity. It's also why it's called the Holocaust. It's not the sort of thing that happens all the time. You don't get two elderly people in a Post Office muttering about how Maureen's 'feeling a bit under the weather because she's suffering from 'a bit of holocaust'.

I say used to be a holocaust denier because he's given up. He went on to the holocaust denier replacement treatment. Such as 'Jew-Hate' patches which give a steady dose of antisemitism over a 24 hour period to help reduce cravings. He's now completely off holocaust denying (although he still fancies it when he's got a beer in his hand).

Other BNP policies include the reintroduction of the death penalty and the use of judicial corporal punishment. Which, ignoring the giant step backwards in terms of human rights this would bring, would put us on a par with Saudi Arabia. A fundamentalist Islamic country. This is interesting because the BNP is constantly bemoaning the (frankly non-existent) 'Islamification' of Britain by radical clerics and the like whilst failing to see that they themselves are promoting an Anglicised version of Sharia law.

The reason that the BNP are a bit of a hot topic at the moment is that they managed to somehow get two of their members elected to the European Parliament. And yes I use 'members' as a synonym from 'penises'. What this does mean is that they actually have a modicum of power. They actually represent people from this country in Europe. They ACTUALLY have a say.

For a while this was a worry. Britain did a bit of collective soul searching to see if we'd all become a bit more racist. If perhaps this most cosmopolitan of nations had lost its tolerant outlook. Perhaps multi-cultural Britain was a pipe dream. One that could never exist for the differences that made us so vibrant, so interesting, so unique were the same that would ultimately tear us apart as cultural divisions became societal then finally political rifts.

No, what actually happened is that in true British style nobody could be arsed to vote in the elections. Indeed the BNP's ability to take power (however small that power may actually be) isn't because of a growing number of people who are drawn to the extreme-right but because they are being forced away from politics in general. Apathy, not ideology, gave the BNP their seats.

The beauty of the recent announcement from the Equality and Human Rights Commission is that it allows at least one of the following to happen:

§ Either, Islam4UK will have a whip-round and get all of their members to join the BNP. Ostensibly this will be to provoke some kind of mass media reaction to promote Islam4UK's saying they're going to do things then not doing them. For the rest of us it will be an opportunity to see the first artificially created black-hole as the enormous amounts of hate-loaded spittle reaches critical mass and rips a hole in the Space-Time Continuum. Take that CERN!

§ Or, the fundamentalist, hardcore, nutters who actually believe in the venom they espouse will realise that the party they had believed in so fervently has just well and truly shafted them by not actually having a spine and at least attempting to stand up for them. Put simply the BNP will lose members faster than the world's largest eunuch-factory (which is just outside Hamburg). It will quite quickly cease to be any form of threat to anyone. Like a bull with no balls - looks scary but runs away when you wave a stick in its face...not sure how this simile works...figure it out for yourself...

Either way I will now be standing for the BNP in the next elections. My policies will include the following especially designed to piss off the rest of the party:

The Duke Fandango BNP Policy

1) Gay men and Women MUST hold hands and kiss in public for every 30 metres they walk. If anyone objects within earshot every homosexual person in the area must dance around the offender in a lewd manner.

2) If Nick Griffin really believes in what he says then I would campaign for him to spread his good news; in central Brixton. I feel it's only fair.

3) I think that joining the Euro isn't liberal enough. We should suspend our entire economy and hand the reigns over to Brussels. At the very least we'll be knee deep in chocolate and fruit beers.

4) I believe that we should change the national anthem to include a verse in the following languages:


Admittedly it'll take about 45 mins to sing and sports coverage will be somewhat elongated but hey, if England can work their way through all that and win a match then fair play.

5) Whenever Nick Griffin is about to speak the theme tune from Bucky O'Hare plays to remind everyone that he looks like the toad bad-guys.

At the very least we can all have a fucking great laugh as this is the crucial moment where the party becomes its own parody.

This my friends is the holy grail of satire and the Equality and Human Rights Commission is our saviour. Let us pray...

8 Feb 2010


Now don't let it be said that I don't tackle the big issues. Sure, a lot of the time I'm just ranting about utter nonsense but I'd like to think that every now and again I go for some kind of apt social commentary.

As such, I would like to provide a definitive guide to the various religions that populate this world so that you, my loyal readers (all twelve of you) can make an informed decision if you decide to take up a religion.

Here it goes:

Atheism: Some would say not a real religion but if you're going to believe anything you might as well believe nothing. Atheists are generally found either 1) laughing at creationists, 2) make snide comments about religions in general, 3) creating shrines to Richard Dawkins. Bizarrely they see no contradiction in this.

Agnosticism: For those who like to behave immorally but occasionally have twinges of guilt about it. Generally persuaded by whomsoever is talking to them at that very moment but primarily so they can wing a free drink.

Anglicism: Like tea, hate putting anyone out. Constantly found apologising for the bad bits of the bible and offering pieces of cake to anyone who will listen to a sermon for more than a picto-second. Generally quite nice people.

Buddhism: Probably the gentlest religion going. Believe in the sanctity of all life...whilst training to kick someone's spleen out through their left nostril. Basically hardcore hippies.

Catholicism: Do you hate yourself? Great! Become a Catholic! Many times you will be afforded the opportunity to combine the mysticism of the ancients through the use of a long dead language whilst constantly being told that you, yes YOU, are at heart, evil. Good if you like wine. Best thought of as Anglicism with a spine.

Hinduism: Believe in about fourteen trillion gods, demi-gods, demons, devils, angels and monkey type thingies. Believe in the sanctity of cows and good at stretching. Dhalsim from Street Fighter II was a Hindu. He was awesome. Not sure anyone else can do 'Yoga Flame'.

Islam: Seemingly a peaceful religion that is full of hotheads. A bit like football in that respect. Best not to draw comics of Mohamed. Tend to get upset when people take the piss...um...Not big drinkers.

Judaism: Bit of a rocky road. Kind of a cross between Catholics and Muslims but with the ability to laugh at themselves. Have a heinous amount of rules so if you're a bit slack about working on your days off or eating bacon then probably not for you. Good range of beards.

Mormonism: Crazy Horses! Whaa, whaa. That's all I know. Oh, and they can have more than one wife. Will try and stop you in the street and convert you by reasoned logic despite the fact that their beliefs are based on a warped reading of a fictional text.

Neo-Paganism or Wicca: Believe in the transcendence of the human spirit to be able to float above the conscious plane which is basically utter shite. Primarily an excuse to go and dance in the woods with no clothes on. Which, lets be honest, you can do without believing in the healing properties of crystals.

Puritanism: YOU WILL NOT HAVE FUN! Tried to stop people having fun in England where they were told to 'bugger off'. Founded America. Killed natives. Like whitewash and wood. Thought mince pies were papist decadence. Banned Christmas. Not great at parties.

Rastafarianism: The only major religion in which dope is used for religious purposes. Presumably so are Doritos. Believes in the imminent overthrow of Babylon. Which turned into Constantinople. Then into Istanbul. It's nobodies' business but the Turks.

Scientology: Heh, heh, heh. The crazed rantings of a sci-fi writer where basically you give them all of your money and then you get a space on the space ship that will take you to...oh, fuck it...it's too mental to explain. Look at Tom Cruise. Do you want to end up like him? Didn't think so.

Shintoism: Everything has a spirit. Rocks. Trees. Sheep. Bags of Sherbet. Jam. Bits of old string. That fluff you get in your belly button, yep that's got a soul. It's a wonder that anyone gets anything done with all these chuffing spirits floating about. Although Samurais believed in it and they were double-hard bastards. Will make you good at fighting.

Sikhism: Turbans and blades. Never need to cut your hair again so you might save an absolute fortune at the barbers. Believe that God is the universe and that the universe is God. Quite an interesting idea when thought about properly.

I swear to God, gods or Dawkins that I should have been an R.E. teacher.

3 Feb 2010

I am actually going to China

Well I got the job.

It's been a bit crazy here and somewhat emotional but in August I will be heading to work in China. Thanks for all the comments and messages of support, they were greatly appreciated.

What it also means is that I will be able to give one hell of a farewell speech. Obviously it's early days but I've got a couple of initial ideas kicking around. Let me know what you think...

Fuckers, fuckers, fuckers. I'm off to work for much more money in a country where education is respected and there are no OFSTED inspections. I will be getting more holiday than you and I'll be able to travel and explore the whole of Asia.

I will most likely keep in contact with the few of you who I actually respect - if you don't hear from me within two weeks it means I think you're a cunt. I thank you for my leaving present of [insert name of object] but I can pretty much guarantee that it will go in the bin within five minutes of me getting home/be on EBAY faster than Michael Jackson's hair [delete according to value of gift].

For those of you who I have had to cover for due to your illness then I humbly ask you to write a cheque for one fifth of your salary. Either give it to me or a charity because quite frankly, you don't deserve it. Everyone else makes it in when they're feeling a bit under the weather why should you be different? Twat.

I would however, like to make a special mention to whomsoever uses my classroom last thing on a Thursday. Why do I have to clear up your shit? Also, why can't you control your kids enough to prevent them writing 'I fucked Jamie's mum in the butt' and 'Terry has a cunt face' on my wall before I have a parental meeting? Why do I have to apologise to Mrs Hysterical and Mr Greatly-Offended about other people's classes?

Anyway - thanks for the references.


I know it needs some work here and there but I like the mixture of profanity and general finality it currently has about it.

Obviously suggestions would be welcome...

Look Ma! I'm on the interweb!

Well obviously...

Jayka over at The Giant Typo is running a series of guest blog posts and my rather humble effort has been posted.

You can find it here: