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What’s Eating Gilbert O’Sullivan?

by Phil Thornton


This month our resident plazzy revolutionary takes a cheap swipe at national heroes and other assorted individuals who have done something infinitely more constructive with their lives than he has. .


10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, HAPPY NEW YEAR SWINESTERS!


Instead of chewing my lip off in some dank cellar, hands held aloft to Holland Tunnel Drive,  this year we went to visit relatives in North Devon and slaughtered fifteen goats, three oxen, two virgins and an asylum seeker in a traditional pagan celebration of the mid-winter equinox. Let’s hope the spud crop doesn’t fail this year or every brown faced scrounger in the west country had better be on their guard come December.


New Year’s shite isn’t it’ What’s a year anyway’ Who said the year starts here’ Circles round the sun, that’s all. You can keep your Christian years and your Jewish years and your Buddhist and Hindu years and your  Druid years and your Communist years and your Khmer Rouge Year Zero and Caesarian Roman recalculations and your Greenwich mean time and your time gentlemen please all day drinking time because, like that addled, whining freakshow Brain Wilson once sang, ‘I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times.’


New Years get you like this, whether you accept them as arbitrary markers of life or not. As if Jools Holland’s Hootenanny shindig isn’t enough to get you packing a Hamas Hamper and heading off to Shepherd’s Bush to see the new year in (just think of it, wipe out the lot of em, the entire backslapping comedy/music cartel in one blast) then it’s one night a year whoppers shaking your hand and wishing you ‘all the best mate.’ All the best what exactly dickhead’ The Best Kiddy Porn’ The Best Fatal Collision With An Oncoming Bus’ The Best Meaningless Platitude Since Have A Nice Day’


This year I want to devote more time to my family, instead of spewing out bilious, negative crap such as this month after month. Yet try as I might to remain  detached from life, from events, from the world around me, I just can’t help it. Things just piss me off. All the fucking time. I’m not mellowing with age, if anything I’m getting angrier. I could crush a grape. I could jump off a wendy house. I’m still shouting abuse at the telly and frankly, the telly’s getting fed up. I’m giving it a complex.


Take the new year’s ‘Honours’ list for example. What fucked up kind of ‘honour’ is it to be a Member of the British Empire’ Or to be a Knight Of The Realm in the phoney Year of Your Lord Not Mine, 2007. It’s like something from Python’s Holy Grail or Blackadder Goes Forth. It’s not so much the lame brain footballers, rock dinosaurs and arselicking entertainers that I really object to, because let’s face it no one expects integrity or even intelligence from those careerist fuckwits. Nah, it’s the token sooties such as Norman Jay and June Sar-whateverhernameis who really get my goat. Norman Jay MBE! Like Malcolm X never happened.


Now you don’t have be politicised and angry and historically aware to knock back an MBE and perhaps Uncle Norm is all those things and felt that it was a recognition of his pioneering work to bring all cultures together under one big happy Good Times banner that he was being ‘rewarded’ for. And ofcourse with that MBE hanging around his neck, he could also charge promoters a few more bob for his services but hey, give the guy a break, after all he invented disco, rare groove, garage and the internal combustion engine. No, Norman’s acceptance of his ‘membership’ may be a personal achievement for his services to playing one record after another one but was also a slap in the face for all his forebears who were shipped out to the colonies as slaves as part of the whole British Empire ‘package’ and then given all the shit jobs and shit housing that whitey didn’t want when the going got tough in the 60s and 70s. Good Times indeed!


As for June Sar-that annoying fake homegirl from Channel 4 ‘ pong, she aint even black. Interviews Tony Blair like someone who really didn’t get Ali G and when the Uncle Tom list is being flicked through, Blair suddenly remembers her pearly white teeth and her slinky black dress. She’ll do! Want that one! I’m sure she’s as worthy as the rest of the no-marks on the list and perhaps more representative of today’s gormless, uncritical, money and status obsessed young generation than even Stevie G but come on, they’ll be giving one to the cast of Ker-ching for services to multi-cultural integration next. Arise Sir Ant and Sir Dec. Lord Jamie Oliver and Lady Jools. Chris Martin OBE. Judge Jules MBE. For services to corporate trance.  


Most countries have some kind of honour system that reward political fundraisers, establishment lackeys, career sycophants and assorted whores and pimps who bolster the status quo. In this Britain is no different from anyhwere else.Yet, only in Britain could so many gongs be handed out to total nonentities by a desperate, populist government intent on currying favour with a politically disconnected electorate. 


You want to reward people who genuinely make the world a better place, go and hand out Republican Medals Of Honour to the legions of nurses, carers, charity workers, social workers and teachers, youth workers, fire and emergency workers and others who put their own lives at risk and seek to help others before they help themselves. But fuck them and fuck Iraq and fuck the NHS and the ghettoes because June fucking Sarpong is off to meet the Queen. Bling, bling!


Someone who Blair will no doubt be desperate to honour as soon as he can is the kid who sailed his yacht across the Atlantic single-handedly (with his dad five foot behind him all the way). Let’s face it, if the kid had come from Huyton or Hackney they’d have banged his mam and dad up or put the kid in care atleast. Parental neglect. Shoulda been in school, the little truanting cunt. And couldn’t the BBC get enough of him and his hideous horse faced family’ A real Home Counties success story for the New Year. Plucky kid steers his Skechers yacht across the pond and arrives in his Skechers baseball cap to give the world the benefit of his wisdom. Hoorah for Blighty!


And who am I to knock a kid who’s put his energy into sailing a yacht 3500 miles across treacherous oceans when at the same age I couldn’t even be arsed getting up to play footy for a few hours on a Sunday morning’ When my own 16 year old can’t even get to the local shopping centre without me giving her a lift’ But just as with Ellen McArthur’s ‘victory’ over the ocean waves a few years earlier, something rings hollow here. Brave Ellen, so the story went, bought her first yacht by ‘saving up her dinner money.’ Hmmm! Now either she went to school for sixty seven years or got 60 quid a day to buy her butties. Likewise there can’t be many 14 year old kids who get to sail their very own corporate sponsored sailing boat and take six weeks out to indulge their own personal hobbies and quests. Imagine if Kenny from Kirkdale fancied trekking across the Kalahari in his Kit Kat sponsored Kickers. Reckon the world’s media would be queuing up to mark this magnificent achievement’


No, the news is all doom and fucking gloom and those Ashes conquering cricketing ‘heroes’ who were all gonged last year have had their imperialist arses whupped by the colonials. Rubgy’ Shite. Footy’ Shite. Athletics’ Shite. Yacht Boy provided the NewsGB propagandists with a rare opportunity to put on a big, cheesy, producer ordered happy, proud, patriotic smile and lay it on thick for true Brit grit.


Like those tireless self-publicist public school prats, Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Sir Richard Branson, yacht boy and his pampered ilk aren’t actually discovering or exploring anything . They’re not adventurers or pioneers, they’re not Shackletons or Livingstones or Hillarys, never mind Magellans or Columbus’s or Cooks. They are overgrown boy scouts and girl guides indulging their private passions with a host of technological and economic benefits denied to millions of other potential ‘world beaters.’  It’s this breed of publicity hungry, corporate sponsored, endurance test hobbyist who give exploration a bad name. Just as Duncan Campbell’s widow is still bleating about the Lottery’s kb’ing of her plan to install Bluebird as a permanent reminder of the playboy dickhead’s last prang, so these weekend extreme hobby lobbyists expect us to be eternally grateful for them dicking about across land, sea and sky.


Going to the moon; that was the last great piece of true exploration, even it was a Paramount studio mock up. Space; the final frontier, where no man, woman or 14 year old spotty geek in a Skechers basey has been before. Get building those rockets lads and then maybe we’ll be impressed.










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