1. An Australian, famous for championing freedom of information, seeks asylum in the embassy of a country famous for persecuting people championing freedom of information. Is he:-
a) Sacha Baron Cohen in his latest hilarious movie?
b) A horrible little hypocrite responsible for putting into danger many lives around the world by refusing to redact their names from billions of secret documents?
c) A madman seeking lunatic asylum?
ANSWER: b) and c)
2. Julian Assange chose the Ecuador embassy because:-
a) They have a never-ending supply of Ferrero Rocher?
b) The staff are especially good at haircuts that make asylum seekers look like TinTin? (Ambassador, you are spoiling him)
c) He’s a madman seeking lunatic asylum?
ANSWER: b) and c)
3) Julian wants to speak to the world without being arrested. Does he appear:-
a) On the street?
b) At the Ecuador?
c) At the Ecuawindow?
4. George Galloway is:-
a) A mad MP who appears more on TV than he does in the Houses of Parliament
b) A cat
c) A bloody funny person to have started a party called ‘Respect’
ANSWER: All three
5. When George Galloway says “not everybody needs to be asked before insertion”, is he talking about:-
a) Placing an ad in his local newspaper for kitty treats?
b) Putting a large foot into a bigger mouth?
ANSWER: None of the above
6. If a US Senate hopeful called, say, ‘Todd Akin’ talks about “legitimate rape”, and rape rarely leading to pregnancy, is he:-
a) Totally unbelievable in the 21st Century?
b) The long lost brother of Julian Assange and George Galloway?
c) A Republican?
ANSWER: Who gives a toss, just don’t vote for the wanker.
7. Are all the men above bonkers?
(And at least two Swedish women, every other woman on the planet and billions of men agree with you. Well done!)
As the erotic trilogy Fifty Shades of Grey out-sells even Harry Potter (difficult to believe the hitherto most successful author of modern times, J K Rowling, failed to spot this yawning gap in the market:- Is that a wand in your pocket, Voldemort, or are you just pleased to see to me?) I’ll concede that yes, once again, I have been pipped at the post (which is perfectly legal and surprisingly comfortable, as long as you apply a good dollop of Vaseline). For I had been working hard on my very own erotic novel, Forty-Nine Shades of Grey. Tsk.
But that’s the world of quality fiction for you – you spend an hour and a half writing a trilogy, and then three come along at once. And whilst the now multi-millionaire author of Fifty Shades of Grey has her knockers, I can actually sympathize (I’m almost certain my knockers are bigger than hers).
Still, I’m nothing if not innovative – you should see what I can whip up in the kitchen with a pint of double cream, a ripe banana, half a cucumber and a few sheets of kitchen roll (optional). Thus I am delighted to offer you an extract from my spanking new novel Fifty Shades of Beige, the style of which perhaps owes a smidgen of something to E L James, the
illiterate illustrious mistress of fastest-selling books in the history of fastest-selling books.
More than that, however, I have sought to introduce to the world of literature an entirely new category: Erratic Fiction.
Read it and weep. (You might find biting into a cushion helps).
FIFTY SHADES OF BEIGE
Titty heard the key in the lock and shivered with delight. Or was it the breeze coming from the ill-fitting draft excluder on the bottom of the magnolia sitting room door? Never mind, she raised her buff stilletoed legs onto the puce Habitat sofa bought in 2004 with Aunty Betty’s birthday money, pulled down her low-cut cream chiffon blouse (2 for 1 in George at Asda, bargain) and smouldered (she really had to give up smoking, this was the third time this week she’d set fire to herself).
Roger’s frame appeared in the door er, frame. He had something in his hand.
That wouldn’t be an S & M catalogue would it? Are you planning to tie me up and roger me, Roger?
“No”, Roger answered coolly, unbuttoning his camel-coloured dufflecoat the way he always did, slowly from the neck down. “It’s the M & S home store catalogue. They’ve got a sale on, I thought we could re-paper the walls in the spare bedroom. My grandmother’s coming to stay at Christmas”.
Titty picked up her crest from the floor, onto which it had fallen. She’d been asked to strip hundreds of times before, but never like this. What would her mother say? (Who, in bringing her up as a nice, middle-class girl, had instilled in her from an early age the importance of using handymen. “Always practise safe decorating, darling. You don’t want to put your back out doing something dull and menial, you’ll regret it for the rest of your life if it stops you from having a bloody good shag with your boyfriend”).
Roger sat down next to Titty and opened the booklet at his favourite page, 69: Pelmets. Titty got up from the sofa, took off all her clothes and self-consciously ran out into the street screaming at the top of her voice: How could you treat me like this, you pervert?!
Anastasia Unlikelyname rushed out of number 27 and put her arms around Titty. Guessing what had taken place, she guided the heartbroken girl into her home, where she could offer comfort, solace, and two litres of Tesco’s own brand vodka.
Everyone knew it was curtains for Roger (p.74 B&Q catalogue, p.439 Homebase, p.98 Argos, cont. p.5976). Probably the tan ones.
When people discover I relocated last year from the South of France to England, they all say the same thing: WHY?!
I tell them I came back because of the weather.
Really?! they gasp. You came back for the weather?!
Yes, I reply. I’m a masochist.
Once again it’s Wimbledon fortnight, the time of year when tradition dictates the tennis-loving British public don their inflatable life rafts, pull on their wellies, and settle down under thick tarpaulins to watch grown men and women slam balls to each other at speeds upwards of 113 mph whilst GRUNTING VERY LOUDLY EVERY TIME THEY TAKE A SHOT AS IF THEY ARE HAVING ORGASMS.
SPLISH! 40 / 30!
SPLASH! Splice the topspin!
SPLOSH! New balls please! (Always advisable to practise safe tennis).
But we plucky Brits don’t let a little bit of weather stand in the way of our enjoyment, for God’s sake! We’re never better than when enjoying a round of soggy sandwiches and a glass of warm beer. We’re only sorry that the Nat West bank has abruptly cancelled all its corporate hospitality at the tournament this time around, penance for being found out in their endeavours to steal the whole fucking country from under our feet and sell it to the Saudis and George Soros. (Who, let’s face it, are the only people who can afford the punnets of tiny strawberries floating around in rain soup anyway).
I know my foreign readers will be a little mystified about the (many) eccentricities of this noble waterlogged land (to be honest, you’re not alone), so let me give you the run down on what it means to live on a tiny island in (and I mean that ‘in’ literally) the North Sea.
THE NOTNICEETOILE GUIDE TO THE BRITISH SUMMER
* Rain is not merely rain. It’s more important than that. Just as the Inuit at the North Pole are reputed to have 47 different words for snow, the Brits have 5,863 swearwords for rain.
* Common or Garden Rain falls on gardens and commoners. The latter includes everyone in the country, other than the 27,934 people who are the most important members of the Royal Family and who are paid for out of the Civil List. (POINT OF INTEREST: Garden Party Rain falls on commoners when they are invited to Garden Parties at Buckingham Palace. It does not fall on the the Queen – who is not a commoner, she’s the Queen, duh – because she shelters under one of her horrible little corgis. So now you know the point of those vicious little dogs).
* Wimblerain and Bank Holirain differ from each other only in the fact they’re both completely predictable. Which, predictably, means no point of differentation whatsoever.
* Showers are completely predictable in their total unpredictability. Which is either predictable or unpredictable, depending on whether you’ve gone out with an umbrella or not. Or not.
* Drizzle is what it does when it’s not raining.
I hope this explains the mystical quality of the British Summer. (Which is called mystical only because the ‘Summer’ part of the British Summer is myssing.)
Don’t feel sorry for us, we grew up in the place, it’s part of what makes us British.
(When’s the next flight out of here???)
It’s very hard to explain to those who hail from countries where there’s no constitutional monarchy what it’s all about. I know this to be so because someone asked me in 1986 what the point of it all is, and I’ve only just managed to come up with the answers. So in case any of my reader is in any doubt (hello son! The Pot Noodle’s in the post! Hope the exams are going well!), here’s the definitive guide to the bunch of inbreds lording it over the rest of us.
THE DEFINITIVE GUIDE TO THE BUNCH OF INBREDS LORDING IT OVER THE REST OF US
1. We are not actually citizens of Britain, we are subjects of the Queen. That is to say, we are subjected to many privations unknown anywhere else in the modern Western World. For example, having to stand out in torrential conditions for four days on the trot, waving small flags on sticks, to celebrate Her Majesty
raining reigning for 60 years. (Or is that decades? Or perhaps eons? Anyway, she’s been wearing terrible attire and awful hats for at least twice as long as Prince Charles has wanted to be Camilla’s tampon. And looking at Camilla’s face, Charles has probably chosen the right end. Trust me, I’ve got a Politics degree). But I digress. Other privations our beloved monarch has bestowed on the country include: having to shell out sackloads of dosh for her hangers on, erm, close family of 476 (combined IQ: 12); ugly, draughty palaces; teeth (think Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie); Prince Edward; and corgis.
If you’re not a dog lover, you might like corgis. Bad-tempered and snappy, Prince Charles probably likes them, too. But for all their nasty characteristics (talking about the corgis now, keep up), they are actually quite clever, many of them working as registered gas fitters when they get time off from the Palace.
2. The Royal Family may rule over Britain, but they come from German stock. When the Queen Mother – who was rumoured to be the illegitimate offspring of a French cook* – married into the family, she was found to have strong connections with the House of Dubonnet, and thus began her reputation for being commonly drunk with gin.
3. The number one reason royalists give when defending the institution is that the Royals bring money into the country. This is indisputably the case. Over the past couple of decades, Prince Andrew has made more personal wealth from his friendships with US paedophiles, dodgy foreign businessmen and evil dictators, than he’s actually spent from the public purse flying on private jets to do deals with them! So how can we begrudge his entertaining these people at Buckingham Palace? After all, what’s the cost of the odd cucumber sandwich when offset against wealth so vast, he’s actually able to bail out his ex-wife on a regular basis? (Personally, I’d prefer if the corgis weren’t fed for a few days prior to their visits, but I’m only a mere subject – even if my subject happens to be Republican Despair in the 21st Century).
4. The Queen is famed for her frugality. To this end, and ever mindful that this is a time of desperate economic hardship for her people, Her Majesty understands that it does not look good to be seen to be increasing the numbers of those living from the Royal Purse. Thus she has accordingly decided that Prince William’s new wife, Catherine, will only be fed on Jubilee Bank Holidays. This explains both why the Duchess of Cambridge appears on every outing to have drastically diminished in size, and the decision of her brother to start up a cake business. (And you won’t find any of those insulting ‘sponge to manual’ anti-Middleton jokes on here, thank you very much. No, I’m saving them up for another post entirely).
5. The Queen’s English is little understood. And not actually true – as I said above, she’s German. This orphan causes confusion. Especially when she distributes Maundy Money on a Thursday. (She takes Wednesdays orff).
I hope this goes a little way to explaining how the almost unique elite system operates in Britain. And if it doesn’t, at least you’ll understand just what motivates many of us to pack our bags and emigrate to the South of France from time to time.
God bless your Majesty!
(It’s alright, I haven’t gone funny – perish the thought – she just sneezed).
It’s summer at last in the UK and time for those new TV schedules! So put away your wellies, deflate the rubber dinghy, hang up your oars and settle down to enjoy some old favourites with a contemporary make-over.
Britain’s Got Dogs
Watch in wonder at how a little mutt with coarse hair, who loves showing off, struts his stuff on live talent show TV and earns half a million quid in a couple of minutes. But that’s enough about Simon Cowell, Pudsey the dog’s quite clever, too.
One Man And His Budget Dog
Cameron unwisely lets his pure breed dog off the leash for it all to end in predictable disaster. Laugh at the resulting mayhem with the pooch’s failure to grasp the true nature of
dear deer, collapse along with the rest of the country as Cameron realizes the damage far too late, and join in with the frantic cry: ‘Osborne, Osborne…Jesus Christ, Osborne!!!‘
Going to the Dogs
A history of the British Isles since Thursday May 6th, 2010.
Comedy series about working-class Brits on holiday in Spain, where ‘hot dog’ is not only a snack but also an aspiration, taking 3 cans of body glitter, half a thong and 12-inch high stilettos to achieve.
Celebrity Come Dog With Me
George Michael recalls his arresting performances in selected LA public bathrooms. NB: Suitable for viewing behind the watershed, third cubicle on the left.
The Hoarder Next Door
Spot digs up a few of his favourite old variety acts from next door’s garden.
Composer of the Week
5.00pm Come Dine With Me
Samantha and Dave cook up a storm with a special meal dedicated to their favourite millionaires. Menu includes Stuffed Vegetables, Toadies in the Hole, Donor Kebabs, and Eton Mess.
6.00pm Embarrassing Bodies
Episode 666: Parliament A team of experts answers questions about assorted distressing conditions caused by House of Commons parasites, including the current epidemic of incursio secretum affecting people trying to safeguard their private snatches from an intrusion of toxic MPs. WARNING: Contains upsetting images of Members faces.
7.00pm Upstairs Downstairs
Episode 2012 The Rt Honorable Gideon screws the lower classes, whilst Second Lieutenant (Failed) Maude makes a tactical error by ordering hundreds of thousands of conscripts to waste days hanging around petrol stations, causing terminal loss of loyalty.
8.00pm 60 Minute Makeover
Can Nick Clegg shake off his cheap Liberal Democrat veneer to wallpaper over the cracks and paint himself blue in just one hour?
8.05pm Cash In The Attic
The Chancellor of the Exchequer invites us to one of his castles to explain why he isn’t rich enough to pay the top rate of tax.
10.00pm Escape to the Country
David and Rebekah enjoy a nag whilst riding in Oxfordshire.
11.00pm Total Wipeout
In depth analysis of the Government’s chances at the next General Election. (Filmed on location in Argentina).
Live coverage of thousands of people queuing up at various airports in order to leave the country. (Repeat)
THE GENERAL SYNOPSIS AT FIVE TO MIDNIGHT
Visibility decreasing, outlook hysterical
Affluent, backing Tory
Effluent, deepening rapidly
Dogger, Fisher, German Bite
Clapham Common, Grimsby, Sauerkraut, intermittently Merkel
Soggy, wind 5 or 6, decreasing later
Poor, veering left
Turning Galloway, becoming bonkers
You want political hot potatoes? I’ve got political hot potatoes. Well, I can supply them no problem, but I’m afraid they’ll now cost an extra 20% in VAT courtesy of the completely cretinous highly-revered Chancellor of the Exchequer’s latest budget. Unless, that is, you don’t mind political hot potatoes which have cooled down from the oven somewhat, thereby becoming political lukewarm potatoes. Which are tax exempt.
Confused??? So are you.
Let me explain.
HOW TO MAKE A BOLOGNAISE
One sausage roll or Cornish pastie
One smug, self-satisfied, sneering millionaire toff with a trust fund
The most important job in Government
A couple of freeze-dried brain cells
1. Prepare self-satisfied, sneering millionaire toff with a trust fund by marinading in Magdalen College, Oxford for years
2. Insert into 11 Downing Street
3. Sprinkle with some fiscal ideas and half-bake
4. Discard any residue of common sense
5. Present bolognaise on a sterling silver platter to media for grilling, and electorate for roasting.
And the result is? Well, it leaves quite a nasty, if not bitter, taste in your mouth, to be honest.
For those of you not up to date with the latest British political news, here’s a summary:-
George Osborne, the well-known twat Conservative Chancellor of the Exchequer, presented his Budget to the House of Commons the other day. This is always a bit of a toughie at the best of times, but currently we’re going through the worst of times (hadn’t realized Charles Dickens had written A Tale of Two Cities about the kind of London the Tories inhabit, and the one in which the rest of us reside), and George had to come up with something that delivered for his coterie of millionaire friends, whilst clobbering the hell out of the rest of us to pay for it. And so he lowered the top rate of income tax from 50p in the £ to 45p in the £ (and subsequently lamented to the press that, sadly, despite owning a £4m house in the best part of London, which he lets out, and having a stake in the upmarket family decorating firm, Osborne & Little – not to mention that trust fund – he isn’t wealthy enough to pay the top rate himself. Which, of course, we somehow mystically knew).
But in addition to this, he also announced that in future VAT would be charged on previously exempt hot takeaway food. (In an instant, thirty million quid was wiped off Gregg’s, the country’s biggest supplier of heart attacks, er, sausage rolls). However, it’s not quite as simple as that…
…for hot snacks – that is, those that are warmer than the ambient air temperature – will be liable for the tax, whilst cooler fare, Mr Osborne states – those of a temperature equal to that of the air temperature or lower – will not be liable. Thus, if you hang around for a while after the new batch of tasty goodies has come out of the oven, and wait for them to cool before purchasing, you won’t have to hand over the extra dosh. However, it’s not quite as simple as that…
…for in summer the ambient air temperature is warmer than in winter, meaning a lukewarm snack in the summer months will not be liable for the 20% levy – as a pastie which has cooled from the oven will be in the vicinity of the temperature on a warm day – whilst in the winter, a warm pastie will still be hotter than the surrounding cold air, and thus can be considered ‘hot’, in the sense that it is warmer than the ambient temperature and, accordingly, hotter than a lukewarm summer pastie.
You can just imagine the glee of the ever-diminishing number of hard-pressed Revenue and Customs officers (though to be fair, they’ve recently been alleviated from going through the accounts of the top echelon of the country’s political and financial elite, since they naturally don’t pay tax) as they are issued with various thermometers to measure both the ambient air temperature in assorted takeaway establishments, together with the insides of a yummy Sausage and Bean Melt, in order to ascertain whether or not VAT is liable for Tom, at the back of the queue, as well as Dick, at the front of the queue. (Harry quite sensibly opted to go to the pub to drown his sorrows at what Britain has become, having given up the Empire and instead devoted itself to lecturing condescendingly on the meaning of democracy to myriad countries the world over, the inhabitants of some of them having never even heard of a deep fried Mars Bar, let alone possessing the wit to imagine a young Right Honorable member of the notorious Oxford Dining Society, the Bullingdon Club, drinking to excess and smashing up top expensive restaurants and country houses willy nilly with his nauseatingly rich friends whilst wearing white tie and tails. Never mind guessing that his real name is Gideon. Tosser.)
(No, ‘Tosser’ isn’t his name, Gideon is. Wanker. No, ‘Wanker’…you know what, don’t bother).
Meanwhile, David Cameron hurridly announced a minimum price for alcohol to divert attention away from another controversial proclamation in Gideon’s Budget Bible concerning a ‘granny tax’ (not sure if you can tax her for six months at a time, and as for where to put the sticker…). Ensuring several lawsuits will ensue, since the measure (ha!) flies in the face of EU law, and is not very popular with the distilleries, for some reason.
Whilst at the same time, the Co-Treasurer of the Conservative Party was kebabed on camera in a sting by newspaper journalists selling Meals for Deals: donate £250,000, and dinner with the Prime Minister and his lovely wife in their private flat in Downing Street is yours.
What do you suppose you get for a dinner worth a quarter of a million quid? A sausage pastie and half a glass of White Stripe? Or is that expecting a little too much these days?
Rules. Where would we be without them? Personally, I’d be wearing opera glasses and those sucker things on my hands and knees, stuck to the outside windows of George Clooney’s bathroom (which could well be dangerous on so many levels. Especially if his bathroom is on the top floor). So rules are obviously a necessary part of life and the sooner we get used to that, the better.
Naturally, we’re not all in a position to write the rules. Not all of us went to Eton (well, I drove past it one rainy afternoon in an old Saab, but I don’t think that counts). Not all of us are deranged, out of touch dictators, unsure of the true meaning of democracy. (Who went to Eton. But that’s enough of British politics.) Only one of us is Silvio Berlusconi (although half of us appear to have slept with him). And what a huge relief that is, it obviously being an enormous burden to use one’s elite position to teach, guide, prescribe and proscribe to the population at large in an all-knowing, but caring and morally responsible manner.
Having recently seen the leaked 3,786 weird, nit-picking finely-tuned, well-thought out stipulations for posting on Facebook devised by plainly sexually-repressed oddball totally regular nothing-abnormal-about-him kind of a guy Mark Zuckerberg, I thought the time has come for a little stipulating and devising regarding my own blog. (I’m bored. Can’t go out ’til the washing machine’s finished).
Oh, and for the record, Mr Zuckerberg may indeed be a little pleased with himself with his 800 million site members, but much as I don’t like to trumpet my own success, I’ll just point out that this week – that’s a mere seven days! – Reversing Over Expats has increased its listed readership by a staggering 50%! That’s right; I’ve got 3 official followers now, up from 2. So stick that in your flotation portfolio, fruitcake.
REVERSING OVER EXPATS SITE RULES
1. No spitting.
2. No ball games.
3. No Ed Balls’ games.
4. Don’t sound your horn after midnight.
5. One foot to be on the floor at all times.
6. Discussion of David Cameron, George Osborne, all banking executives and Simon Cowell to be censored at the discretion of NotNiceEtoile.
7. No photographs of tits. (See point 6 above).
8. No breastfeeding of persons under the age of 17.
9. No images of pixelated Pixies. (I was only fulfilling my contractual obligation to be a Jolly Pixie, how was I supposed to know the Brownie Juice was spiked???)
10. No maps of Turkey, no pictures of turkey breasts. Even if covered in mayonnaise with tomato on rye. (Cartoon turkey breasts OK if wearing a sportsbra and thick sweater).
11. No poaching of animals. (Grilling is acceptable, as long as a range of mustards is available).
12. Pictures of crushed heads OK, especially those as a consequence of popular uprisings.
13. Offside Rule to be chanted on the hour, every hour, after five pints of best on match days:-
A player is in an offside position if he is closer to the opponent’s goal line than both the ball and the second-to-last defender (which is usually the last outfield player), but only if the player is on his opponent’s half of the pitch. “Offside position” is a matter of fact, whereas committing an “offside offence” occurs when the a player is “actively involved” which is subject to the interpretation of the referee. Goals scored after committing an offside offence are nullified if caught by the referee.
How much more clear can that be???
14. No anoraks. Especially those with the initials MZ, no matter how nauseatingly rich they are.
No appeal if you haven’t bathed for three weeks and are wearing socks with sandals. Or your trousers are too short, and/or made of cartoon polyester.
You have been warned.