Monday, 13 April 2015


I went to the barber's in Redditch, in 1999; it was just after the death  of Old King Hussein of Jordan and Arab John gave me a trim  and told  me all about  the Hashemite dynasty, what bastards they were; and I went again, today,  22nd March, 2015, in Dundee. 

I hated it, the barber's, from my very first experience; when I was about four,  they sat me on a plank between the arms of the big chair and my Dad said, shortback'n'sides. I screamed my head off and I have never liked it since, the phrase or the sound of the clippers. It may be that grooming other men, like nursing them, is a perfectly natural choice of job but it wouldn't be mine. Fuck no.

 Seems a long time, I know, sixteen years, between groomings but it's just  so irrelevant, barbering. I need no-one's approval of my appearance, it is an impossibly long time since I worked for anyone else and that circuit, of approval-seeking, is long-since shorted.  I don't shit in people's gardens or wipe my hands on their curtains or anything and I wear latex gloves if I even make anyone a slice of toast but my hair, as long as it's clean, never enters my thoughts;  being barbered, furthermore,  is such a strange intimacy, all that looking-at and talking-to another bloke in the mirror, I can't be the only one made uneasy by that strange, public confessional booth, by a professional groomer telling one what would look good, hair-wise, parting-wise. 

My Dad  treated me, much later, after instilling in me a loathing of all gentlemen's hairdressers, everywhere, to a barbershop shave - you know, all that fetishy palaver, a roasting  hot towel in tongs  draped over my face, a badgerbristle brush soaping my face  and a stropped, cut-throat razor gliding over my Adam's apple.  Seems to me like the sort of ritual a hangman or a suicide bomber might enjoy, before going about his day job.  Once was enough. Those Al Capone blokes, in Chicago,   they must've been fucking mad, sitting in a chair with some spic fairy waving a blade around their windpipes.

I think the Ruperts used to command their batmen body servants to do it to them,  the hot, close shave; but then the Ruperts, well, TE Lawrence-Rupert, of Arabia, anyway, used to require of his manservant that he  beat  his  guilty buttocks  for him, with leather straps and God only knows what else.  A man's life, in the army, thrashing his master's arse.

I haven't  turned into Robinson Crusoe or anything,  these past sixteen years, I just get mrs ishmael to tidy things up, once in a while; sometimes I do it myself, just wash it, comb it all forward and scissor a couple of inches away, job done, it's not surgery or anything.  But it's thinning  on the top now and I thought I'd better get a trained bloke to even things up a bit and so I went into the A Class Turkish Barbers,

 just over  the road from my hotel,

the Malmaison Boutique Hotel And New People's Brothel. 

Meeting comely young men and hard-faced but  inviting  young women in every elevator is not the strangest aspect of a stay in Malmaison.  It may be that a steady supply of prostitutes is all part of the service in a city hotel and the Malmaison emphasises the potential raunchiness of a stay within its confines. For when you need a room in a hurry, that sort of thing accompanies the house  logo of a panting couple, clawing at each other.  The toiletries supplied all come with pornographic explanation and innuendo, the fig shampoo tube, for instance -  gettin' jiggy wit da figgy,  away from home you want sexy foam.  something to make them (ooh-ooh-ooh) moan and groan. squeeze the tube, that's quite enuff.oh my lord, you look hot in the buff. now all clean no longer dirty, isn't it time for you yoo get flirty) and half of the wardrobe is given over to a Malmaison mini-bar, stocked with expensive cheap champagne and bottled cocktails,  in case he or she needs industrial-scale  plying with drink, the more mal to be.  I don't think there was ever a time when that sort of crudity appealed to me. All a bit racist, too, I think, that enuff in the buff stuff. And the tone is lowered further by the Do Not Disturb sign, whic reads, insrtead of DND, Clean-Up on the one side, Clear Off on the other. Not an ideal way to instruct mainly immigrant domestic staff; still, if the purpose of your visit is purely carnal, as the management seem to want it to be, then insulting the menials might produce a much-needed hard-on. Maybe it is owned, the Malmaison chain, by some cunt like Beardy Branson for it has all of his personal hallmarks.

This is broad daylight au Malmaison and the lights are on.

 A new experience, especially for those who are jaded with being able to see what they are doing, the Malmaison's exclusive design team has  developed very dark corridors,  leading through very dark doors into very dark rooms which are cunningly  unlit by strangely useless lightbulbs, pinhead-bright, but useless to see-by, like stars a trillion light years away, before Time began;  the walls are dark, the carpet is dark, the furniture is dark, the curtains are dark, even the television has, somehow, had all the light leeched from it.

Towards the end of 2001, A Space Odyssey, the hero finds himself, at the farthest end of space and time, in what appears to be a replicated Earth domicile but it only looks like a proper place, everything is plastic, copied visually from a photo; drinks and foodstuffs, although in authentic packaging, contain only ersatz goo. This not-quite-rightness, this Looks-Like-A-Hotel-But-Isn'tness of the Malmaison was apparent not only in the decadent dinginess of its miserable fucking  decor but in the staggering, breath-taking, heart-stopping  incompetence of  the staff - receptionists who couldn't receive; waiters who couldn't wait, barstaff who could neither pour nor transport a drink, yet all grinning like masturbating chimpanzees, all addressing us as YouGuys, urging us to Enjoy!  One teenage waitress, who couldn't safely carry two empty side plates, informing us, as though she was God's personal Maitre d'hotel, that her particular, special, personal favourite among the desserts was the pineapple blanquette, whatever the fuck that is, and as if any bastard in his right mind would give a fuck what her favourite pudding was, stupid slut When I was a kid I worked in Belfast's  then-great Grand Central Hotel, where waiters worked for months, in what was called the Still Room,  making tartare and horseradish and Hollandaise sauces; creating wafer-thin, delicately curved Melba Toast, curling butter, polishing silver, glass and crockery before being allowed  anywhere near the fucking dining room. Once there they would learn how to vacuum the floor, polish the tables, lay the linen, set the silver without even the hint of a fingerprint and eventually they would be allowed to, using a spoon and fork, place in front of a customer, just-so, a hot plate, onto which a fully-trained waiter would silver-serve his meal. Other waiters, chefs-de-rang,  cooked on a lamp at the table, Stroganoff, Steak Diane, Crepes; might pan-fry and fillet, with a spoon and fork,  a whole Dover Sole Meuniere. The country, its hotels and restaurants, it's First Class train buffet carriages, its town halls, its passenger liners,  was once awash with people who could do that stuff.  I can do all that stuff and so some slip of a girl who serves soup with her finger it, telling me about her favourite pudding is only going to set my teeth on edge.  Some countries still train catering staff; I think in Ireland being a barman  needs an apprenticeship and the Europeans still value proper service. Nothing wrong with service and people shouldn't conflate it with servility. As mr bungalow bill often repines, those things which we do with our hands and eyes, we should do well. Ruin has robbed us even of the satisfaction of knowing how to wait at table, made feeble and worthless what was once a complex set of skills. Enjoy!

In the barbers,  I sat me down on the leather settee and commenced to watch Turkish Gaz shave this bloke's already closely-shaven head until he looked like a concentration camp victim and then take twenty quid off him.  In the other chair, Turkish Gaz's brother, Solly, was doing the same to another customer, only he was leaving a line, half-way up the scalp,  the kind of thing I used to do with the lawnmower, a line between mown strips that wasn't really there;  this was a neat line all the way around his head just above his ears which kind of made the almost-invisible stubble look as though it was, well I don't know what it was supposed to look like, looked fucking stupid to me, two-tone, that's what it was, a two-tone shaved head. See, bro, I 'as got yo line, innit, chortled Turkish Solly of A Class Turkish Barbers, Dundee.  'Ow many times it is I 'as done yo line now?  Issa lot anyway, I could do that line in me sleep, man, tellin' ya.

Growing concerned that this was not a gents' hairdressers in the usual sense, I had been looking along the counter for some scissors but all I could see was a vast selection of electric razors, black ones, red ones, white ones. And hair driers.  They each had a couple of hairdriers, slung in holsters on the counter, like Colt .45s in the Sherrif's office. Whaddatheywant with hairdriers, I wondered, these guys have virtually fuck all hair when they come in here and none at all by the time  Gaz and Solly're done with them, what's to dry? You don't need a hairdrier for a shiny bald head with a fucking line around it. But then I saw Sol, down the other end, he had flames coming out of hands which were  frantically waving around his customer's recently shaven head.  Fuck, he's caught fire, poor bastard, mind you, paying twenty or thirty quid  to look like a nineteenth-century convict, he can't be right; probably just spontaneously combusted, Nature's way of telling him he's a waste of space, which he surely is;  happens all the time, I understand, just go up in flames and smoke, they do, only their shoes left, or in this bloke's case his lurid green and pink trainers.  I used to worry about that quite a lot, spontaneously combusting,  going so far as to mind-design a sensor-operated, shoulder-borne  fire extinguisher, with a nozzle on a tube just above the head, one wisp of smoke and a mighty deluge would flood the wearer, but these days I am less self-centred in my anxieties, more community-, more planetarily-orientated, worry myself sick, sometimes,  I do, about big fuck-off lumps of asteroid smashing into the Earth at sixty thousand miles an hour, blowing everything to fuck, roasting us all in our beds and blacking out the Sun for a hundred years;  serious climate change, that stuff, a  gazillion kilotonne nuke, turning everything all Golden Wonder.  You may mock my concern but cosmically speaking  that sort of shit happens every five minutes.

And then I understood, that what Sol was doing, down the other end of the salon,  was burning the hair out of wotsisname's, TwoToneHead's,  ears, with a lighted spill and he was waving his hand in and out of the flame, I suppose to stop the ear catching fire.  Fuck this, I thought,  for a game of soldiers, I came in here for a bit of a trim, not an Aushwitz scalping and having my ears set alight; I'm off, I'll buy a good pair of scissors and do it myself. In the hotel. No, not in the hotel, too dark, even in broad daylight, cut my ear off, I would and some whore probably bust-in, anyway, offering me a figgy shampoo or a pineapple blanquettejob a la mode. I'll give myself a trim when I get back home.  Not having some gobby Turkish git poofter set fire to my fucking head, after he's shaved it bald.

But I was too late, Turkish Gaz was extending to me a plastic cape and saying Your turn, sir, sorry to keep you an' 'ow is you today, an' 'ow you want yo' hair?

Before I sat down I said to him, struggling for an idiom, and regretting it immediately,  You do old-fashioned? Cutting?  With scissors?  Only me not wanna shave, like other blokes, certainly no shavez-vous  mon tete, comprenez? 

No, is OK, can scissors do. 

 And me not wanna catchee fire, in ear hole. 

 I didn't think he would, put the fire in my ear, not unless I let him shave my head clean, like a boiled egg, which I wouldn't. Be like Galipoli all over again if Gaz and Sol tried that. But I could see the grim logic of it, now, the fire, what's the point of  removing every trace of hair from the cranium, if there's strands hanging out from the earhole? Look fucking rubbish, that would. It was actually quite sensible, in the world of NewPeople's convict chic coiffure, to set fire to your ears.  Crazy fucking bastards.  Although, if we set fire to the Pampas grass - you can't cut the fucking stuff, not without a nuclear-powered, laser chainsaw - it just grows back bigger and tougher.  Maybe there's former customers of A Class Turkish Barbers, Dundee, walking around the town, tripping over their ear-hair, smashing their dumb faces on the pavement. Serve 'em right

You want hair cut to ear, like this, Gaz enquired of me in the mirror, or above  ear,  like this?

Maybe just below ear a bit.

Like so?

Yeah, like so, just make a  bit tidy, make even-out. OK? 


I can put myself in trance, almost at the drop of a hat; no, I can, really, I can, just drop my chin on my chest, close my eyes, drop my hands in my lap, breathe-out and I'm gone;  I dunno if it would see me through an asteroid colliding with  John O' Groats and dumping a trillion tons of super-heated water on my house but it works for things like epidurals and that's what I did as Gaz snipped away, doing that folding-between-the-fingers and stretching and snipping thing that proper barbers do. I shut my eyes and lost myself.

You wan' some nice spray?

OK, whatever you think.

I wish I hadn't said that because I soon smelt like what I imagine a Balkans Bond villain to smell like, sweet and heavy and a bit unwholesome but as sixteen-yearly haircuts go it wasn't too bad. And I found out what the hairdriers were for.  Barbers in ancient days used to brush you down with soft-bristle brushes, pull your collar away and brush all that scratchy stuff the fuck out of it,  then they'd sweep your hair from around the floor  using a cheap, nylon sweeping broom and a dustpan. I used to wonder what they did with all the hair, the barbers, I mean, it was, in those days, anyway, a lot of hair; maybe they were in touch with the people to whom the Nazi Hermanns - all of them - sold the Jews' hair, the stuff they shaved-off, before they gassed them - vaste not, vant not, eh, Jahwohl, ist gut, mein Fuhrer, some mattresses can make, mit ze hair from ze dead Jews. Ach, nein, nein, zat vood mean sleeping on top ov ze filthy Jewbastards,  I am ze fucking Fuhrer, must I sink of every fucking sing?  For you, feldwebel of haircutting, iss ze Russian front, fucking dumkopf;  you are sure zat you are not a fucking Jew, maybe your grandmutter, she vaz a fucking Jew, eh? 

 Every minute or so, during my trim, Gaz would blast me with a hairdrier, to get rid of the clippings and when he had finished he half-crouched, half-scampered, half-ran after the hair on the floor, coralling it, at hairdrier point, little bits of stubble - apart from mine, which could be measured in inches -  in a pile in the corner of the shop, like mouse droppings. 

He only charged me a tenner. Wasn't too bad an experience at all, once I had determined to take some Turkish heads, like we used to, if they came near me with scalp-arson in their eyes. I wondered if they knew of or were bothered by the number of inns and coaching houses in England named The Turk's Head or The Saracen's Head;  I mean, if we, not that we would, went to Turkey on holiday and found, in every street - do they have streets? - a coffee shop called the Brummy's Head, the Scousers Entrails or heard one Turk say to another, see you later, Ahmed my brother, for a coffee, down the Geordie's Giblets, salaam eleikum, and it's your turn to pay, I wonder how we'd feel.  But fuck 'em, anyway, Turkish barbers, not as though they're important to proper people, not like my young friend, stanislav, was, a Polish plumber.  

I am glad I had the haircut but I feel, as I often do in Scotland's mean, city streets, that men of more refinement than I would've fled;  even borderlands Berwick-on-Tweed being noticably more civilised  than Scotland's dire, Tribesman reservations. An Empire sensibility, Resolution, that's what a man needs, in the towns and cities which have fallen to the cult of Gnashing.

But going to the doctors' in Dundee,  that, fuck me, was an whole other thing; I have never seen so many sick people, all in one room.  And although I have sat in a room talking to six released lifers I have never seen so many dangerous, crippled and  malformed citizens all gathered together as there were in this laughingly-titled health centre.

I had 'phoned my own doctor, at home, concerned about something.  Go and see a local GP, she said, tell 'em to get this x-rayed.   But they have no appointments, I already tried.  They have to see you,  they have no choice.  I found one which would see me eventually and the waiting room indicated that  the Black Death or worse was alive and well in Dundee, not quite the plague exactly but an NHS Trust'sworth worth of cancers, malnutrition, addiction and obesity, knife and bottle wounds;  every other person had one of those things in their throats;  the ones who didn't weigh forty stones weighed seven or eight, in danger of slithering out of their shell-suits and down a drain; skins translucent, junkies stage-whispered at one another about which doctor was on and what they'd give them;  there wasn't a-bit-of-a-cough or an upset tummy to be seen, every bastard was dying, apparently, of abuse or neglect,  the guy next to me with the thing in his throat reeking, still,  of cigarettes.  It was all a depressing, macabre illustration of  When you got nuthin, you got nuthin to lose;  it was like being in the ante-chamber to that ward in the hospital, the one where all the men with no legs form-up their wheelchairs like a wagon train and power-wheel themselves  outside, for a fag.

Must be one of the sorriest sights in the developed world, this.

Those people, dying for want of an antibiotic, blinded by dirty water, what must they think of us; flushing our toilets with drinking water, smoking ourselves to death in hospital?

When I went to the Allan Carr Easy Way To Stop Smoking Clinic they told us that there were two kinds of people among  whom the Allan Carr approach wouldn't work - teenagers, whose parents were paying the hundred-quid fee for them, and amputees who had already lost legs to smoking-related illness.
 The kids, he said, didn't care, it wasn't their money and the amputees were too far gone in addiction to ever be well again. 

Most people who go to that clinic - and its branches worldwide - stop smoking but not everybody knows about it, and many are now deluded into thinking that they need nicotine patches or chewing gum, need to be shepherded throught themselves, by smoking cessation teams, teams of experts.  It's rubbish, all that, you just need someone to lay out for you just exactly how stupid smoking is and then you'll stop, just like that, there's nothing to give up, it's like banging your head on the wall, only more dangerous.
Easy to be smug, though, about having stopped that lunacy and I think if I hadn't and had instead, as was likely and may still happen, contracted a fatal, smoking-related illness I'd find myself a tobacco executive, Jazzman Kenny Clarke'd do,  the fat cunt,

the one who is a former health seckatry and worked for British American Tobacco,  and cut his fucking heart out. See what he made of that as an exercise of free will. 

Ye-e-es, I'm a Tory you see, ye-e-e-es,
 and rather unlike the socialists, I must say,  I believe in freedom of choice. 
And that's why I worked for a time,  selling killer drugs to poor children in the third world. 
They make the choice and I make the money, ye-e-e-es
Dolphin Square? 
Never heard of it.

I had a visitor, here, last week, from the Black Country; his back's fucked, his legs're fucked; his hands're stained, not yellow but black;  he doesn't sleep and he coughs.  But it int the fags wot causes that, no way.  It's a soyentifick fact, it is, that smokin' dunt cause none a them. Oh, fair play, it may cause cancer burr I yint got that. I'll stop long before I get that fucker. He's fifty-three. 

Scotland, or Scotland's cities, seem to be filled by people like that,  like my visitor, people stupidly vicious to themselves, thinking they're clever.  The life expectancy in parts of Glasgow is depressingly short and much as I despise Whisky Maggie it is crass and opportunistic of the tribesmen to blame her for  Glasgow's epic pilgrimage to self-destruction.  Sure, everybody knows that the savaging of  shipyard, colliery and foundry workers was an act of wilful political cruelty committed by filth like Tebbit and Heseltine, by spivs, cocksuckers, childfuckers, bullyboys, thieves and beasts but that's no reason to smoke yourself to death, is it;  no reason to beat your wife and  neglect your kids, just because your footba' team lost; no reason to eat shit fried in lard  and snort smack. One can, of course, blame Thatcher for everything and believe in a bizarre Nirvana, in  a Scottish renaissance, if only the hated English'd fuck off but junkies and wifebeaters and drunks are not going to be its midwife, no matter what Gnasher tells them about the Scoattish peepul.

Forty miles east, 
 in Sterling, 

or a hundred miles north, 

in Inverness, in the Great Glen, 

 Scotland isn't writhing in the desperate throes of longed-for nationhood, 
doesn't have a full-time job hating the English,
that's just the nutters, most of whom know little or nothing of their own history, obviously.

 Living in or on the edges of the Wilderness doesn't half give one a sense of proportion.
It isn't Scotland which ails the Tribesman.
It isn't England which ails the Tribesman.
It's the fucking city.
Living in Glasgow or Dundee  and having all his hair removed by Turkish Gaz, beating his wife and getting pissed out of his mind, that's the tribesman's ailment.

They live in shit, they eat shit, they drink shit, they talk shit and they allow some snarling, good for fuck all, rabble-rousing, tub-thumpng, flag-waving, life-long Nazi career gabshite like 

Jesus, I'm sure anyone at school with her would've hated her fucking guts.
wee Nicky Sturgeon to feed them indigestible cliches of shit; too stupid, far too stupid to see that she and her Sugar Daddy, the FatMan,

Does this really fool anybody, 
this fat, smirking cunt in his fancy dress?

 have far more in common with the filthsters in MediaMinster than ever they do with some ginger, cider-swigging, beetle-browed, cross-dressing, knuckle-dragging, wife-beating, neanderthal savage, who couldn't count to five using his fingers.

like this.

Time after time I enquire of Central Belters, Y'ever been to Orkney, seen the stones, Skara Brae?  Inverness, the Cairngorms? 
Nah, keep meanin' tae, y'ken.... 
But I loves Eyebeetha, me.

Sometimes I say, Y'ever been to Canterbury, see the cathedral? Oxford, London? The Albert Hall, the Proms?
Durham, maybe, see the cathedral there? No?

No way, yon's English history. 
An' I hae me ain culture, ken, 
aye, an me ain music.

 Finished in Dundee, instead of blasting up the A9, white-knuckling to the ferry as usual, we lit out, north-west of Pitlochry into Victorian, hunting and fishing Scotland.

Even seeing Dame Judi Dench and Dame Billy Connolly,
at her own wee postbox.

This is the hated A9. 
More accustomed, previously, to the M42, 
I love it. 
It is my own Route 66, 
my own Highway 61

 running from up in the hovel-sprinkled
Badlands of Caithness
down to sparkling Invernessshire

and Perthshire .

Talking of Caithness, my recent visitor couldn't, simply couldn't, not no way, simply cooden get 'is 'ead around how them people can live there.

There int no people, loike, do me bleedin' 'ead in, 
that would. Norravin no people.

He lives here,

in the Black Country

 Travelling, anyway, northwards from Dundee

We entered the Tay Forest Park. It was gorgeous; trees, water,  and mountains, trembling on the edge of Spring, the odd sheep, some Highland cattle,

 just like the Beasts, Drinking at Sunset,  in all those Victorian water colours. 

There was no traffic and we travelled about fifteen miles, as fast as the road would allow, which was  approaching thirty miles an hour, until we reached our hotel for the night. We passed a farmer now and again, coming the other way on a quad bike, going between his jobs, giving us a brief wave; I am sure one could work a life away there, in the country, nestling in the mountains, watching the seasons.

When I was an infant, sitting on her knee, my mother lullabied me with a song which I now know to be The Road To The Isles; her father's family were Orange Glaswegian and she, like many in Belfast, had absorbed Glasgow street slang and idiom and was fiercely sectarian. The song of The Road To The Isles, though, in her voicing,  was  rythmically wistful -

Sure, by Tummel and Loch Rannoch
And Lochaber I will go,
By heather tracks wi' heaven in their wiles;
If it's thinkin' in your inner heart
Braggart's in my step,
You've never smelt the tangle o' the Isles.

It was just a couple of years back,  I discovered that not only were Tummel and Loch Rannoch and Lochaber  real places but that quite as a result of an accidental departure from the A9 I was actually standing beside Loch Rannoch reading a signpost to Tummel, Lochaber and to the Isles.

The approach to Loch Rannoch

The hotel, built in the 1880s.

And a room

with a view

On this trip we were heading back home, looking just for an overnight stay, and for the river- and loch-side journey through the still-snowy glens. Any half-way decent hotel would have served that purpose but this was an establishment in which you would expect to find George Clooney,  being rich, debonaire, handsome and  gipped out of his coffee. Inside, it was a fairly typical Highlands hunting lodge - tartan carpets, antlers on the wall, fireplaces, settees and oak sideboards, all perfectly fine; the food and the service were nigh-on perfect and the tarrif half that of Dundee's Malmaison Knocking Shop.  But it was the view outwards  which electrified; in Dundee  I had looked-out over a depressed,  grubby street, strewn with food containers, fragranced, occasionally,  with happy hash smoke;  in Loch Rannoch, a vast, crisp Creation bid me Welcome, have a nice day, and meant it.

Here, in the Highlands,  in the distant, off-road Wilderness,  is the Scotland for which people say they would die;  here is the prompting of my own thought that  Scotland is  the very best part of England.  

It is oddly encouraging that those of us who reside and wrench a living in rural and remote Scotland are the least likely to vote with  a road-locked and ranting urban  minority cult, inebriated,  embittered and too lazy to even visit the lands over which they claim Lordship.

 If  Scotland's natural, fierce,  soaring grandeur could speak it would say, Ye've never, wee Gnasher, smelt the tangle o' the Isles, awa' then and boil yer heid. 


My fellow motherfuckers. 

 I stand before you to-day as our  wholly militarised country faces even more difficulties with the negro race.  

There was a time.
My fellow motherfuckers,
A time before the Civil  Rights Act.
When humans were entitled. To protect themselves. From animals.
But those days. When they knew their place. Are long gone. 

And now it seems.
 That all they wanna do is bitch.

 And our proudly militarised lawnforcement stormtroopers4democracy.  

Regularly find themselves.
 Outnumbering these dangerous folks so badly. 

That they don't all get an opportunity. 
As is their God-given right.

To pop a round in their black asses.

My fellow motherfuckers.
 That can't be right. 
As my good friend, songwriter emeritus and national treasure. 
And inextinguishable Beacon of Freedom. And spokesperson of the equality generation. And campaigner for human rights reminds us:

Dah-da-dah-daah da-daah-da-daah-da-daah-da-daah,
everybody must get shot.

And it was my good friend and stooge, Dr Bob, who sang to us about niggers only being a pawn in the game, about how William Zanzinger was unfairly sentenced for killing that piecea nigger trash, which he didn't actually do, or mean to do;  it was Bob who reminded us that the times ain't actually a-changing, the cops and the governors and the senators are still killin' niggers on the street, just like they always did.
Fuck me, Jesus, 
seems like we can't turn around without some nigger sonofafuckinbitch gettin' his ass blowed away by lawnforcement. Everywhere you look. They're gettin' their big black asses shot, getting choked, 

being beaten to death and when that shit ain't happenin' they're gettin' fried, gassed to death or being handed nine-hundred year sentences to be served on they ownsome in some six-foot square shithole only comin' out to receive a good kicking offa the guards, As fine a body of men. As ever served. This fine nation of ours.

Well, my fellow motherfuckers, we all done with pussyin' around with this shit. 
It's like Mayor Rudi Guilian-eye-oh done said.

We  need zero tolerance of black folks.  
These Goddamn niggers are just plain criminal.  And he should know. Anybody knows about criminals it's Mayor Rudi; didden he single-handedly save New York City after Saddam Hussein bombed the Trade Centre, killin' all them folks and even collapsing buildings that wasn't even nowhere fuckin' near where them planes hit; 
I mean.
 How's this shit supposed to happen?
That a building just falls the fuck down. In its own footprint. In free fall.  Just because there was a wastepaper bin caught fire?

  That's the kinda nigger evil we face, today, voodoo, plain and fucking simple, that sonofafuckinbitch just magicked that buildin' into collapsing, takin' all them tax records with 'em, too; spells, hocus-pocus, shit like that, 'swhat we up against.  Nigger shit. Don't matter if them niggers is growed men or babies in the cradle, only good one's a dead one. Ain't we learned nothin' about this shit?

Anyway,  just like President Kennedy said, when he and his bro' wasn't bangin' the ass offa poor Marilyn Mun-roe,

Happy Birthday, Mr President,
You met my brother, bitch?
He'll love ya to death.

 and then havin' her killed, what he said, that  greatest  of criminal presidents,  was that we need far-sighted and radical solutions. An' that's just what I'm gonna give y'all.
(assumes nasal Boston accent and speaks in sing-song, preachy style)

My fellow motherfuckers, 
I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a nigger  on Mars and not  returning him safely to the earth.

 No single space project in this period will be more impressive to mankind, or more important for the long-range exploration of space; and none will be so difficult or expensive to accomplish.

We propose additional funds for other engine development and for unmanned explorations - explorations which are particularly important for one purpose which this nation will never overlook:

  the non-survival of the man who first makes this daring flight. But in a very real sense, it will not be one nigger going to  Mars -  if we make this judgment affirmatively, it will be an entire nation of niggers. For all of us must work to put them there.
 We  choose to go to Mars 
not because it is easy 

but because it is the only thing we can do with all these cocksuckin', bone-idle, fuckin' nigger sonsafuckinbitches  

complaining their black asses off everytime one of them get's murdered by a decent, white  public servant. 

And as to. 
My other achievements. As your president. And Torturer-in-Chief. Let me promise. That those folks. Who lost their way. And tortured the asses off of. A number of Serve 'em Right innocent people. Niggers and such. And Asians. Let me assure this great nation. That those honest, God-fearing torturing folks. Got nothing to fear.  Not from me.

We gotta look forward, not backwards. To the next batch of people that's needs torturing.  America has become so great, such an example of Freedom and Justice.  That we have enemies everywhere.  And that's why we gotta torture more'n'more folks, lock 'em up, deprive 'em of sleep, visitors and contact with lawyers, then torture 'em some more.  This is  the Uninted States' great mission, the Freedom to torture absolutely anyone. But especially niggers.

So we gotta kill them. 

That's what presidents do. 
Set the agenda. 
For the American people, 

 I'm  so emotional I could shit.
I wanna talk, now. About the economy. And how I fixed it. The rich folks. Who employ me. Are richer'n ever they were before. And the poor folks. Who don't matter.  They're poorer than they ever were before, too.
 So that shows. My fellow motherfuckers. That we treat all people. Exactly the same. The rich're richer. And the poorer are poorer.  To those who hatheth, hath been giveneth. And to those who hatheth not hatheth been takeneth awayeth.  Could anything be.
 More American than that? 

 Under my administration. 
The American Dream is alive. If you're born poor. The odds are. That you'll die poorer. And if you're born rich. The odds are. That you'll die richer. Much richer. Leastways, I will. 
And if you're black, not only will you be poor, beaten and thrown in jail, y'all have the right to be shot dead.

I wanna turn now. To foreign policy. Under my leadership. We are opening a new relatioinship. With the people of Cuba. Just as long as they do what we tell 'em. They too, will soon. Realise their dream. Of Coca Cola. And MacDonalds. And internet pornography. Which is the right of all men and women. As well as being shot dead on the street by lawnforcement.

Street Legal
Whydya shoot the nigger eight times?
I ran out of bullets after that.

Wherever they are born, niggers and brown folks deserve the right which they enjoy, here, in the Land of Freedom.  The right to be shot dead for no reason, just because some psychobastard, serial killer cop feels like it.

 God Bless Amerika.

Next week. 
President Hillary Trousers Champion  on What I learned about Decency and Integrity from my pretend husband, Spunky Bill.


Anonymous said...

Out-fucking-standing, as my dear old Granny used to say.

Mike said...

Tour de force, Mr I.

Once had a cut-throat shave, and its the only time I've held my breath for 5 minutes.

Caratacus said...

Rightwinggit - seconded. And now I'm late ... but what a bloody brilliant start to the week.

A mirage made in heaven said...

I was 'head barman' at that Rannoch hotel in the late seventies Mr. Ishmael, and have fond memories of the local scenery and the scenic locals. At that time the place was going all time-share greedy, with Frazer's of Dundee building them lodges and even a heliport.

I remember swapping a hundred local magic mushrooms for a Canadian red star LSD microdot with one of the Frazer boys. I went spinning fruitlessly for pike in the loch with my Aussie girlfriend until the acid really kicked in, whereupon we climbed high above the water to admire the view. Something weird: about 50 yards out, lurking deep in the water, I could clearly make out a shining, spectral paddle steamer. It just hung there, a glistening full sized ghost of a boat. My girlfriend could see nothing and, given my state, I was in no position to argue with her over the veracity of what I insisted on was there.

However, a week or so later as I walked towards the village, I saw two divers surfacing over that exact spot. I went down to talk to the land crew with their boat to hear that they were diving on what was left of a Victorian paddle steamer sunk in about 80 feet of water. I said that I had seen it from the hillside and they said: 'I don't think so pal' and looked at me as if I was on drugs...

Anonymous said...

Brilliant piece my dear sir! Accurate too; I always stop in Arrocher when heading north to buy a breakfast bap from the pleasant lady in the wooden fry-up/chippy thing. There were two Glaswegian chaps, one of whom responded to her cheerful "good morning" with "Hoo far are we frae civvul-eye-zayshin?" in the usual whiny aggrieved tone of the type. You two are pretty far from it, thinks I, as the fry-lady gave directions to the nearest town, hopefully wildly incorrect ones.
They were too dwarfish and stupid to punish by punching them in the face which was my first instinct but by God it's no wonder your waiting room was full of injured ones if they're like these two.
I saw more of them near Dunoon fishing for mackerel; the next day the little pier, at Kilmun it was, was littered with dozens of dead fish and slightly fewer empty buckie bottles.
Asteroidal destruction is too good for that type.

Bungalow Bill said...

Joyous and righteous, Mr I. The bit in the barber shop should be anthologised.

Bungalow Bill said...

PS Malcolm X, now there was a properly dangerous man. Of course, he had to go.

SG said...

A fine piece Mr I. Strangely your Scottish sojourn evoked Samuel Johnson & James Boswell's 'Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides' being almost anthropological in its approach. Your observations in relation to the inhabitants of the Central Belt also reminded me of this from 'Trainspotting':

"TOMMY: Doesn't it make you proud to be Scottish?

RENTON: I hate being Scottish. We're the lowest of the fucking low, the scum of the earth, the most wretched, servile, miserable, pathetic trash that was ever shat into civilization. Some people hate the English, but I don't. They're just wankers. We, on the other hand, are colonized by wankers. We can't even pick a decent culture to be colonized by. We are ruled by effete arseholes. It's a shite state of affairs and all the fresh air in the world will not make any fucking difference."

Alas for the apparent demise of Renton - perhaps the last of his kind with any sense of perspective...

I also enjoyed your account of a trip to the Turkish Barbers. However, I am something of a convert to ear singeing which has a long history. I first saw it being done when I was a young boy back in the early seventies at a traditional English barbers (no Saracens or Turks in sight) though I understand that the practice is Turkish in origin. My Kurdish barber does a decent crew cut, ear singe and eyebrow trim all for £8 - I can't be doing with a scraggley grey mane or hair sprouting from ears etc. - though I would certainly draw the line at one of the 'skull cuts' that you observed being performed.

Anonymous said...

When I lived in Sarf Lunnun there was a Greek barber down the bottom of the Broadway called Phokas - honest, not invent.

That hotel room snapshot - is there a fucking bathtub in the bedroom or a bed in the fucking bathroom? They charge extra for that shit?

I'm with you on the asteroid paranoia. (Check out "Melancholia", one of Lars Von Batshit's few watchable films. Strangely humane, in the end...when it's too late.) If the Tunguska Hit had been an hour or so the other way (1908) - nomore Paris, possibly, or Moscow. Cancel Russian Revolution, 1st WW? Whatever, the Americans would still have found a way to parlay it into a fuckoff great longterm loan and maybe Uncle Sam's Grand Tour would just have got started a bit sooner.


call me ishmael said...

I gave away my copy of Trainspotting and it has leeched out of my awareness, since. The stringent self-deprecation and loathing, however, is not Welsh's singular copyrighted view. The divine Rab C Nesbitt and its subsequent imitator, Still Game, both trade, bitter-sweetly, in that caustic self-flagellation and it is my experience that those so stridently tribal are alse the most likely to groan, exasperated, I fucking hate fucking . Scotland. There is, though, as I said, an equilibrium which emerges the further north one travels.

It is a contradictory complexity of a place, Jock's mind, mr sg, and one which too easily offers violence - the two most drunkenly pugnacious and thuggish recent MPs, for instance, being John Reid and Eric Joyce - and it is my sincere belief that the disappointments attendant upon Scottish nationhood will make his mind a place even more fractured, at war with itself. I don't think he realises, yet, that he lost the referendum, although he is about to.

call me ishmael said...

It is all hair's breadth stuff, mr verge; if the February 2013 Russian impact had come in 2014 it would have struck the North Atlantic. And there was one caused huge shit, last year, in the Gobi Desert, which arrived with only 18 hours notice. You would think there would be a global agency, wouldn't you, straining every muscle, to avoid extinction?

call me ishmael said...

LSD has departed the body in a relatively short space of time, having pulled its electro-chemical trigger; what happens thereafter is the observation of what lies beyond the doors of normal perception and one's reaction to that. Course you saw the steamer. And anyway, it's a magical place, Loch Rannoch, mr mirage, and you might have seen it even without the acid.

Been a long time, now, since I had any psychedelics and I wouldn't dream of doing it again but I think I am a bit expanded and refined by having done so. Perthshire must now suffice, and Pallestrina.

SG said...

Good news Mr I! Selected passengers aboard The Titanic plc can now buy their own cabins. Plus, in other news, Mr Fox declares in favour of the Rabbit Liberation Front (Australian branch). Elsewhere, in backstabbing news, Mr Milliband confirms that he's been tested... Hell Yes! Aren't you just fucking loving it? Don'tcha wish your girlfriend was hot like errr! Like Leanne Wood (so long as she keeps her mouth shut...) and not at all like that wee, thin lipped, Kranky Woman - Dont'cha?

call me ishmael said...

No, I doncha not.

I am finding jobs to do, in order to keep me from skymadeupnewsandfilth, it is all fucking intolerable.

SG said...

"Cheer up Mr I! Someday this election's gonna end (maybe..)". With apologies to Lieutenant Colonel Kilgore for stealing and bastardising his words.

Bungalow Bill said...

You mention the great P. It having been Easter, I recommend to those who may not have heard it Tristis Est by di Lasso/ Lassus and William Byrd, Ave Verum. They're on YouTube.

The older I get, the more piercing this sort of music is because it is written out of an awareness of how hopeless and guilty we all are, and how we might be forgiven. Though it helps if you believe in someone who might forgive us. Anyway, beautiful things in their own right.

SG said...

Ah! Easter, Mr BB. I meant to post this earlier - by A N Wilson, writing in the Pink Organ, back up the road somewhere:

Copy & paste and it should get you through the Pay-Wall. If not let me know and I'll look for another way...

Bungalow Bill said...

Thank you Mr SG. Excellent as always from that writer. There's that detail in one (maybe more?) of the gospels about the younger disciple outrunning the older Peter to the empty tomb where Jesus had lain. Graham Greene found that convincing as to the truth of the narrative because it was such a human and trivial point to make, the old man lagging behind the eager youth.

Not, alas, for me - but sometimes it is tempting to think as Greene thought. In the meantime, the music will do.

SG said...

A wise decision Mr BB - remember what happened to Pinkie!...

mongoose said...

Blokes have no interest in getting their hair cut, do they? It's just a thing that has to be done like lawn-mowing. Women tend to see it as recreation. Though I am not sure that they would if they had to have some geezer setting fire to their lugholes.

call me ishmael said...

The blokes in Dundee do.

DtP said...

It's got fucking surreal has this bag of shite unpopularity contest - not so much jam today but fucking trifle today and a massive diabetic coronary tomorrow. I know that it's looking like they'll be a hung parliament but they're just taking the piss now under the abstract knowledge that as soon as they get to unelected negotiations it can all be dropped.

WTF is this 30 hours a week 'free' kiddy care bollox from the Tories - are we effectively placing kids in minimum wage environments so mums can go out and earn minimum wages and for no-one to scratch their head and say - cut the fucking middle man out. At least with Thatcher, you knew she was a right wing autocrat but these guys - even me as a bit of political nerd can't tell the difference anymore. Uurrgghhh

It's all very well for the Greens to want to ban rabbit hutches but considering I couldn't give a toss about rabbits, they ain't getting my vote but seriously, if they'd proposed popping fine mesh over wind turbines to prevent bats and birds being killed I think i'd bloody well vote for them because if they're taking the absolute piss it seems only fair for me to do so too.

@Mr Mirage - that, Sir, is proper cool.

call me ishmael said...

Guilty and might be forgiven? Well, I'm not and quite frankly, I never heard anything so offensive to hard-working families, doing the right thing. I mean, all they wanna do is work hard and get on in life. Or, as in my case, not work hard and still get on in life. Look at me, I didn't even have to get elected and yet still I'm the prime minister, standing up for hard-working families, standing up for the country, douing the right thing; just goes to show what you can do if your parents do the right thing and send you to the right school using money they've stolen from other people, in some cases, over generations. It's like this, either we can have the sound policies of my friend, Junkie George, policies which, quite rightly in my opinion, punish poor people and sick people and indeed anyone who can't defend themselves or we can have the sort of country we'd have with you in charge, people talking about guilt and death and I know which one I prefer. Pallestrina, anyway, it's not exactly the sort of thing Mayor Boris and I would listen to after trashing an Oxford restaurant, frightening the natives and sending the bill to our paters but from the sound of them Pallestrina sound like a New Ronantics band, not the sort of thing a man your age should be listening to. So let's hear no more from you, just run along, work hard and make sure you do the right thing, we'll tell you what it is.

call me ishmael said...

That's always been my view of what they call child care, mr dtp; it defies arithmetic and by definition must be deleterious to the national good. I am not saying mothers or fathers shouldn't also work, if they want to, just that this is a cruelly inverted measure of prosperity, in which parenting has become nothing more than a disadvanatageous imposition, soonest shifted, soonest mended. Christ, soon everyone'll be as fucked-up as the Old Etonians.

mongoose said...

I was a bit concerned yesterday that the green lady had mistaken the purpose of a chicken coup. Does she not know that they are castles against the fox rather than prisons against the chuck? Somebody needs to set her straight before the whole election is ruined for me.

call me ishmael said...

Strange thing, though, mr mongoose, is that she agreed with everything, nearly everything, which we espouse in Ishmaelia - limits to growth and consumption, a citizen stipend, an accountability among the kleptocracy, animal welfare, if not welfare at the least an end to cruelty. Trouble is, she is, as you detect, mad as a fucking hatter.

UKIP Suzy, though, she's quite sinister, pressing everybody's buttons even though she will leave them standing in tne middle of the air.

mongoose said...

I suppose that she does - sort of. Except that her party has no current prospect of having anything to do with power and therefore no responsibility to propose anything achievable.

The great horrible unspoken question about the Greens is that, yes, they want to save the environment, the earth- but for whom? Or for why? For the saving itself? OK. Well, that is religion. And it will require an enormous number of desperately poor people to die poor. And their children and their grandchildren. If it is to save the planet alone - well, the planet will look after itself long after the human race has lost its poker game with a galactic coming together. Dinosaurs we are. We are no threat to the planet. In the long term we are all dead. Even a global nuclear war would be forgotten through the wonders of the exponent and the half-life of Doctor Strangelove.

But we are for better or for worse the environmental custodians of the planet - at least a few parameters thereof. We must deliver that for the greater good. The greater good of whom though?

Economic growth is the enemy of the environment at first glance but it is the vehicle which will allow those 4 billion poor people in Asia, Africa and several hundred million in South America, to have kids who won't have ten kids. Who won't pollute the earth like the western industrial revolution polluted the earth as we learned again what could happen. The Romans certainly had already grasped it, and others before them. The Greens need a Reformation as urgent as the one our Muslim colleagues are experiencing. If they cut their bunny rabbit bullshit, I'd vote for them in a heartbeat.

call me ishmael said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
call me ishmael said...

I loath any whom I meet, mr mongoose, greens, but that's because I was green, as they call it, before most of them were born and for many their politics is just legitimised, snooty grievance. I will introduce you, one of these days, to Holyrood's Earth Conscience, one Patrick Earring and Waistcoat, and you will see what I mean.

Every one of them words rang true, about Ultimate Ruin's slow train a-coming, although I approach it from a different point of view, one of moody, existentialism, mr bungalow bill's ubiquitous guilt trip - believing Marshal McLuhan's assertion that individual consciousness is an evolutionary dead-end, cannot be otherwise.

We should still explore EarthCrime, however; maybe down the highway, down the track, down the road to ecstasy.

Call me any name you like, I will never deny it but like Groucho Marx, I wouldn't vote for anyone who appealed to the likes of me.

SG said...

I have perused the Green 'Manifesto'. Really it is just a rag bag of loony left positions reminiscent of the GLC's agenda in the 1980s before it was crushed by Thatcher. It has no intellectual or philosophical coherence and no basis in science either. If adopted their policies would do more harm to the environment and human population than generations of smokestack industrialists. I like the idea of protecting, better still restoring the environment, but as James Lovelock observed “We are no more qualified to be the stewards or developers of the Earth than are goats to be gardeners.”

call me ishmael said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
call me ishmael said...

I am not as able or as organsied as you, mr sg, when it comes to keeping track of what we might call theoretical political sciences; I once knew a little about, for instance, Lovelock, it is now all a jumbled mosaic, from which bits and raps and riffs appear in Zen bubbles, only bursting into clarity when I write them down; unlike some here, I am so scholar and I cannot easily discern meaningful difference between competing Money systems, the profit motive seeming to me to be ethically and practically redundant and undesirable, as in to the point of final catastrophe; how can any endorse a belief in the nobility of a tiny few having most and many having nothing? If that is, as the self-styled pragmatists insist, human nature, then human nature is doomed and rightly so.

As to the Green Book of Shite, I am sure it is all those things but that

"It has no intellectual or philosophical coherence and no basis in science eithe.."

is neither here nor there, nor do any of them; they are all an ideological Eton Mess, sweet, sticky and poisonous; all are also meaningless in the sense of them being firm commitments, the age of multi-partyism lets all off Integrity's hook.

I wouldn't vote for anyone whose loyalty was to a political party and I would dismantle the entire parliamentary political party apparatus in a moment and Caroline Jacket'n'Haircut would not be exempt.

Where they do serve a purpose, beyond themselves, however, the Greens, is in raising the tone, which they do, above this fatuous, patronising and humiliating tripe about hard-working families, doing the right thing, so beloved of that useless cunt, Cameron and his coarsening disfigurement of the public discourse. Talking about animal welfare may just make people reconsider the way they treat each other; talking of unsustainable growth and consumption might shake MediaMinster's faith in the recurring facetious promise of ConsumerJam, but Tomorrow not Today. Today, we must continue, from the Great Latrine of State, to shit in your faces. Do the right thing, now, and open wide.

SG said...

Thanks Mr I. I agree with your comments about the other manifestos - most UK political parties have long since come adrift from any philiosphical or ideological underpinnings that they may have once had. Not that it matters much - none of the manifestos are worth the paper they are printed on & will likely be torn up post the election when reality comes home to roost & the shit hits the fan. I'll have a think about your other point and get back to you down the road.

call me ishmael said...

I guess they are all meaningless, outside of the chattering and blogging classes, we shouldn't even mention them, even talking about them dignifies them beyond their worth.

ThomasBHall said...

Now this post is why I visit! A rip roaring roller coaster ride of the mundane and the profound. My grandparents moved to Orkney and everything I drive up, I am always overwhelmed by the transition into wilderness- great, wild, beautiful. I confess though, John o'groats always is a bit of an anticlimax- I'm hoping to get swept up further into mountains and snow. Instead it sort of ends... Orkney itself seems a windswept unexciting place, and aside from the fact I know my grandparents don't really like social interaction, I don't get the move over somewhere on the west coast. Oh well, each to their own.
On the politics, agree the greens are well meaning, the issue is, they still have a very democratic process as to what gets on the manifesto- so they get loads of disjointed and weird stuff. I'm probably a Georgist, and support a tiny political party that stands no hope in hell of winning anything, but I am content in the no compromise of ideal the support allows me.

call me ishmael said...

The windswept life is exciting, mr thomas b hall, demanding respect and resilience and there is as much or as little social interaction as one chooses - am-dram, music, theatre, clubs, societies, sports, WI, evening classes, competitions, wife-swapping, church, hash parties, arts and crafts, university, archaeology, choirs and gossip. You can also, if you wish, live as I do, quietly and privately. Not for everyone but I suspect it is for an increasing number. And London is just a trainride away.

blackholesunset said...

Scotland's countryside looks beautiful, Mr Ishmael, thank you for sharing your journey and your thoughts.

The Green Party is the only one I think I could vote for in good conscience, or at all.

I hope they end up standing for more than just their faults but the system will likely allow no other outcome.