Sunday 12 November 2023

The Sunday Ishmael: 12/11/2023

What I did on my Holidays

Sorry to have neglected you for so long, but I'm back in the Bracing Isles now, after a perfectly splendid autumn holiday in glorious Englandshire, best part of Scotland. Apart from some emergency dental treatment, costing £100 and occasioned by biting down on a slice of artisanal bread (just watch that healthy stuff - the crusts are made of compacted aggregate, very good for the bowel), I survived my holiday unscathed. A selection of my holiday snaps follows - and because we haven't had any fun, jollitry, competitions, anagrams or crosswords lately, here's this week's competition.
Where did I go?

There's a clue on the destination board of the ghost train, but where is that ghostly platform?

Clue: The largest second hand bookshop in England. What is it called?

Clue: this ruined castle is walking distance (if you are good at walking, like mr. mike, but not like me - I swear I've broke my left foot and had to buy a pair of those expensive kiddy shoes - all moulded, cushioning whatever) of the little fishing village in the following photo, which is internationally famous for its artisinal, hand-finished product:

Clue: this is one of a collection of water engineering features in the garden of a family that, but for the mischance of history, could have secured the English throne. Shakespeare gives the scion a nifty line in back-chat:

Lady Percy. What is it carries you away?
Hotspur: Why, my horse, my love, my horse.
Lady Percy. Out, you mad-headed ape!A weasel hath not such a deal of spleen as you are toss'd with.....
Hotspur : Come, Kate, thou art perfect in lying down: come, quick, quick, that I may lay my head in thy lap.
Extra points for identifying the play.

Some autumn colour for you:
So, minimum points for identifying the county, I'm expecting our ishmaelian detectives to also give me the places featured. Our lugubrious gent at the head of the post is a guide who kindly posed for me after shocking my teenage companion into expletives deleted when he opened the door to invite us into this:
Competition answers through the comments in the usual way - apart from the fame and the title of blog clever clogs the star prize winner will choose a forthcoming blog topic.

Learn Constitutional Monarchy 101 with mrs. ishmael.

I was cruelly amused by what they did to Brian, by the way: dressed him up like a Ruritanian popinjay and made him read out a list of stuff that he fundamentally disagrees with but is no longer allowed to say so. In the forthcoming parliamentary session, My government will make a steaming, roaring, splattering horse's ass out of me.
Head bowed under the weight of his museum piece of a hat, stiff with jewels and pearls en tremblant, his face expressed his humiliation and dismay as his fat little fingers fumbled with the list of Sunak's demands. For the benefit of our overseas readers who are unfamiliar with these arcane practices, the State Opening of Parliament is a piece of theatre in which the King is dressed in velvet and ermine, with very large satin bows adorning his shoulders and is enthroned in the House of Lords, together with the equally fancifully dressed Lords and Ladies whilst Black Rod (honest, not invent), gathers up the Commoners (MPs, the Prime Minister and holders of the great offices of state), and knocks on the door before they are allowed in to stand at the back in their boring old suits to listen to the King reading out the speech written by the Prime Minister which sets out the laws that Sunak would like to be passed in the forthcoming Parliamentary session. Here they are on their way out - the folks with white hair are wearing wigs, for fuck's sake.
It's embarrassing, so it is.

As you know, I am a pacifist, constantly appalled by the wars that rage around the globe. The latest one has pushed the Ukrainian one off the front pages. Is it nastier than the usual? Probably not. I've been wondering why, in what is a secular nation, these religious wars are being played out on the streets of London, taking up air time, demanding that we take sides, disrupting what has now become Remembrance Weekend - the commemoration of previous wars.
I think it is because people enjoy war. They like it. They think it is fun. And exciting.

The aged Jilly Cooper has written yet another novel about rich people fucking and has been touting it extensively. Her thesis is that Tories screw all the time. It seems to be borne out by a detail in Nadine Dorries' exposé, The Plot, which is subtitled the political assassination of Boris Johnson. Amidst allegations of plots and dark arts, there are also allegations about an MP who his own Whips' office believe is a rapist, and an MP having sex with a prostitute on a billiard table while four colleagues watched.

Here's mr ishmael, writing in 2013 about these matters:

In the late 'sixties and early 'seventies, Jilly Cooper was the Polly Filler of her day, writing meaningless tripe for the Sunday Times
she had neither the piss and vinegar verve of Marjorie Proops at the Mirror or the witty insouciance of Catherine Whitehorn at the Observer, but few of them do,  then or now. Doesn't matter,  there's always room in skymadeupnewsandfilth for a woman's point of view, if they can't be persuaded  to get their tits out, that is, and Jilly plodded on delivering her turgid weekly analysis of this or that.  But then she discovered a talent for writing spanking novels, not spankingly good, spanking.  They were set among serially unfaithful, horsey people in the home counties, people with big dicks, big tits and big bank balances.  I think they were, anyway, I never read one and my understanding of Jilly's oeuvre is pieced together from hazy memories of the book covers - well-filled jodhpur bottoms, riding crops and stiletto heels,  that sort of thing, Ah,  here they are,  I wasn't wrong,



the sort of mild BDSM stuff which the Filth-O-Graph would love to put on its front page, if only it wasn't still pretending to be a newspaper.  

Throughout time, it seems,  Jilly has hymned her love for hubby, Leo. 
 Leo was a waster and a prat, maintaining a mistress for years, probably at Jilly's expense but that's their affair, or so you would think.
Leo died recently, after loyal and faithful Jilly having nursed the worthless tosser through years of the dribbling disease 
and the Filth-O-Graph, today, published an open letter to the widow Cooper from world authority on bereavement, child abuse, consumer affairs, tarty underwear, old age and anything else that can keep her in the  public eye,  Ms Esther Fangtzen.
In about fifteen hundred words, Esther shares with us - and, presumably, Jilly -  her fears about but also her confidence in Jilly's ability to handle widowhood. The horrid old fraud offers Jilly 1500 words of 
unsolicited, patronising, condescending psycho-consumer-luvvie babble whilst hosannahing her own, adulterous, home-wrecking affair with and then marriage to the ghastly Desmond Wilcox, now dead, let us - and he -  be thankful for small mercies of deliverance.

 Not satisfied with intruding into another's grief, Esther also manages to shamelessly, impertinently  plug her latest, self-serving charity, something to do with older people, like herself;  we must trust in the perspicacity of octogenarians and that they tell her to go and fuck herself.  If you thought the press was already in the gutter, you should read this piece of shit.

How does this phoney old monster continue to infect our public discourse?  I keep saying, it's Oxbridge, those bastards are everywhere,  they are like an invisible pox, gnawing away at Decency's innards.    
Bit lower down love,
like I get the kiddies to do for me
and mind your teeth, eh?
Two prominent child protection experts share strategies.

Your Stanislav and Ishmael fix can be obtained by ordering the four-volume Call Me Ishmael oeuvre,  the work of editor mr verge.

Honest Not Invent, Vent Stack, Ishmael’s Blues, and the latest, Flush Test (with a nice picture of the late, much lamented, Mr Harris of Lanarkshire taking a piss on a totem pole) are available from Lulu and Amazon. If you buy from Amazon, it would be nice if you could give a review on their website.
Ishmaelites wishing to buy a copy from lulu should follow these steps :
please register an account first, at This is advisable because otherwise paypal seems to think it's ok to charge in dollars, and they then apply their own conversion rate, which might put the price up slightly for a UK buyer. Once the new account is set up, follow one of the links below (to either paperback or hardback) or type "Ishmael’s Blues" into the Lulu Bookstore search box. Click on the “show explicit content” tab, give the age verification box a date of birth such as 1 January 1960, and proceed.
Link for Hardcover :
Link for Paperback :
At checkout, try WELCOME15 in the coupon box, which (for the moment) takes 15% off the price before postage. If this code has expired by the time you reach this point, try a google search for " voucher code" and see what comes up.
With the 15% voucher, PB (including delivery to a UK address) should be £16.84; HB £27.04.
Leaving Aberdeen harbour on the sea road to Orkney.


Anonymous said...

Welcome back, mrs Ish!

Was the play Debbie Doth Dallas?


mrs ishmael said...

Thank you for the kind welcome, mr verge, but the title of Blog Clever Cogs is beyond your grasp, if that's your best attempt. Debbie Doth Dallas, indeed!

Anonymous said...

Nadine Vanessa Dorries could have "Readiness and Aversion" on her coat of arms (ok, "facilitas et odium" would be a bit classier but it's not an onomastic anagram...)

...and while we're at it we might also observe that "arson ends a divine arse" (while drawing a thick woke veil over "sordid venerean Asians".


mongoose said...

You obviously went to Northumberland and thereabouts, mrs i. Is that the local line platform in Newcastle Station? It might be. I do not know the play and cannot be bothered to cheat but it will be one of the Kings. Alas, they do a goodly line in ruined castles up there and so I don't know that one either. (It's not Alnwick itself which is in better nick than that.) So no BCC award for me either.

Welcome home, m'lady.

Mike said...

Welcome back, Mrs I. Trust you has a good time, despite foot and mouth disease.

It's a guess, as I don't recognise the places, but going on the clues I'll go for Newcastle??

Mike said...

Flashman is back. Mrs I: you must have a lot of back issues to delight us with. Please.

mrs ishmael said...

Indeed, mr mike - the next Sunday ishmael practically writes itself! My first thought was that Sunak must be ma-a-aad, but, on reflection, he's clearly desperate and couldn't get Tony Blair to do the gig. So, from unelected former Prime Minister to unelected Foreign Secretary in seven swift years, via a touch of disgrace over his attempts to exert any remaining influence with former MP chums on behalf of the dodgy Greensill enterprise, snatching up a lordship en route, Cameron returns in splendour. And round and round it goes. The Dodgy Bolter, forever in our minds as the suave chap who told Sasha Swire that he would like to push her into the bushes and give her one, survivor of the Bullingdon initiation rite scandal involving his privy member and the decapitated head of a deceased pig, developing a bit of a tortoise neck and thickened middle these days, settling his comfortable rear end into the chair vacated by that unshaven big black bloke, will now be representing us on the world stage, a world in flames, for fuck's sake, as Lord Cameron brings his subtle diplomatic skills into play to sort it all out.
He's kind of famous for getting it all wrong, isn't he? Misjudged the mood of the country, particularly the working class, so insulated is he from the ordinary problems of the majority of the people that he assumed he would win outright the Brexit vote. Then he throws his toys out of the pram, lower lipping as he told the nation he wasn't going to be Prime Minister any more, making his horse-faced wife, Samantha of the High Heels, force out some tears on the steps of Downing Street. And after bolting from his job as PM and precipitating us into the chaos of a Conservative Government in Civil War with itself, he then bolts from his job as an MP, precipitating a by-election, off to make money from the business world and Greensill, over which the subsequent Parliamentary Inquiry found that he had exercised "a significant lack of judgement".
God help us.

mrs ishmael said...

Splendid anagrams you drew from the full name of Mad Nads, mr verge. Thank you!

mrs ishmael said...

Northumberland, indeed it is, mr mongoose. Now, is anyone going to have a go at the places in Northumberland featured in the post? A sort of Round Britain Quiz?

inmate said...

If the volkes didn’t think we’d had a coup with the appointment of Rashid Sanook - (c/o @bigjoebiden) - then they must believe it now; replace the jewish/indian mouthy bitch with the hunky/fat/obese unshaven tokenblackboy, who does as he’s told, replace the hunky/fat/obese unshaven tokenblackboy, who does as he’s told with the corrupt, spineless, pigsheadfucking, 7millionquidricher, NYU Professor, Libyan bombing,muslimcocksucking toryboy. If it’s not a coup then…
Just wait while QweerStamerer gets in -must be his turn soon - we’ll have anthonycharleslyntonB fucking liar, appointed, telling us how things can only get better if we kill all the sandniggers n hebes, ‘sthe right thing to do, in the national intrest.
We’re wellntruly fucked.

mrs ishmael said...

Now don't hold back, mr inmate. Just let it all out.

inmate said...

It shows the level to which we’ve sunk, 650 MPs to choose from, a house full of ermine clad, 365 pounds a day Lords, a civil service of tens of thousands, hundreds of foreign diplomats, indeed Sanook could have ennobled anyone from the country to be foreign sekatry, but no, Call-me Dave, a pussy who runs away at the first sign of a difficult decision.

inmate said...

Sorry for the rant mrs Ishmael, is this it? Is this the best we can do? Call me Dave? FFS.

mrs ishmael said...

No apology necessary, mr inmate, my dear, I entirely agree with your thesis. D'you know what the media have been calling him? A Big Beast. Honest, not invent.

mongoose said...

It is becoming apparent that they do not care what we think and more than that they do not care that we know they don't. Either side of the pond the deplorables who didn't vote the right way can just go fuck themselves. The poor MAGA buggers across the water think that on they're going to be able to vote themselves out of their mess. Well, I have news for them too.

As for Call Me Fucking Dave... Well, words fail me. The self-satisfied, smug git. It is not as if he has a towering intellect that might help us in our current mess, or that he has ieas, or that he has anything except having been to the right school. If Osborn comes back to play, I'm off to kip at mr mike's sofa fr the rest of me natural.

inmate said...

Big Beast, as in the Saville beast, probly right.

It is not as if he has a towering intellect … but, but he’s a professor at NYU, whatever the fuck that means. Nah Nobsore’s got enough fingers in enough pies or bums.

mrs ishmael said...

That include the missing treasures from the British Museum, mr inmate? What idiot put him in charge?

Mike said...

Sinicure, Mrs I. I think that's the word. The mafia were more upfront about it. Its a payment for past services rendered.

pc fuckoff said...

well, well, well, what a weekend:

wogs in command of the national front?

oh dear me...

this country ain't what it used to be.

ultrapox said...

oh, i know, i know, constable...

it's called progress, you see - or even diversity...

on acid...

but whatever would poor enoch think?

well, my guess is that - rather than 'far right' extremists - he'd consider the brave defenders-of-the-cenotaph a bunch of bog-standard bloody football hooligans.

i mean, who isn't deemed 'far right' thesadays? farage is apparently a 'far right' nationalist - despite always having been staunchly anti-war - and trump is allegedly a 'white supremacist' - despite currently attracting 22% of the african-american vote in swing-state pennsylvania - whilst on the contrary, racist dog-whistlers holocaust hill clinton and genocide joe - despite having notoriously insinuated blacks to be "super-predators" - are now firmly regarded as latter-day saints who simply can't stop kissing little brown babies, darling...

and then don't of course forget those swastika-covered nazis - fighting for an "all white ukraine" - who are somehow generally considered the saviours of the western world...

ultrapox said...

ah indeed, mr inmate, a cunt-of-a-pm recycled before-your-very-eyes into a cunt-of-a-foreign-secretary...

quite remarkable.

yes, dave camel-wrong: the man who created isis and armed nazis in ukraine - with a bit of help from war-criminals willy plague, theresa dismay, boris bio-weapon, old ma clinton, joe bomb-'em and last-but-not-least, our wonderful intelligence-services.

as you mention, moreover, grave-dave bombed libya back into the stone-age and wanted to join bad-luck obomba in bringing the same dreadful fate upon syria too, but was famously thwarted by little-legs abbott bouncing up-and-down like a ping-pong outside number ten, and furiously waving her vintage peacenik-placard.

of course, now that biden-the-barbarian has blagged his way into the white house - and maliciously manufactured an electorally-expedient blood-bath in the middle-east - dave-the-grave might just still get his chance to push-the-button on president badass in damascus...

it's a new world - and it's all about sustainability folks...

and sustainable dave is back - with a vengeance...

but why couldn't they find the cunt a proper job?

inmate said...

That include the missing treasures from the British Museum, mr inmate? What idiot put him in charge?

Gotta pay for that coke habit somehow.

Yes Mr Mike, the biggest beneficiaries of the coalition and Call me Dave/Nobsore’s govaments was SERCO, the biggest service company no one’s ever heard of. They run councils, prisons, borderforce, court security, immigrants hotels and are sequestering property/rental houses in cahoots with the banks. Gotta house all those fighting age illegals somewhere.

Yes mr pox, forgot about Isis and the White helmets, hmmm.

mongoose said...

I bumped into the Serco bastards nigh 30 years ago. (I think I related the tale to mr i.) They were money-grabbing, corrupt vermin then and I cannot imagine that folks like that have any hope of ever getting any better.

How many times have I been asked to provide "a cover" for a tender bid? Countless. How many times have I knowingly done it? Nil. How many times have I been outmanoeuvred by their deeper pockets and the need for expensive chits and reports? Beyond counting. It is no wonder I no longer play those shit games. It is BTW what all the endless EU regs are for. They're barriers to entry.

inmate said...

Serco and their junior partners in crime, Crapita, now too big to fail, like the banks. Public - Private - Partnerships started slowly by Major then rushed in by B liar. In the old days, before before, we used to call it Fascism n only the bad guys used it, well, I suppose old Adolf would’ve been welcomed with open arms in these more enlightened times.
Serco were the creators of Alan Johnson disease and the Staffordshire mass murders weren’t they mr mongoose?

Bungalow Bill said...

Lovely pics, Mrs I. Barton Books or something like that in Alnwick, Dunstanburgh Castle and Seahouses perhaps too. The house of the armaments man?

A wonderful part of the land.

mrs ishmael said...

Pretty good submission, mr bungalow bill! I've posted this The Sunday Ishmael without giving the answers to the contest - to give ishmaelites more chance to submit their entries - and I will give the answers mid week.
I agree - Northumberland is my second favourite English county. Yorkshire, of course, is simply the best.