Sunday, 30 May 2010

Hideous outfit? That'll be all your money please.

So I was sitting here, on teh interwebz, minding my own business and considering how my experiment to see if a human can subsist entirely on ice-cream was going, when suddenly! Good god! Holy Blood Pressure Batman! I realised I could be shooting my word-bullets at in a far more productive (?) use of wasted time. I also feel I owe some repentance for not having posted since forever, but I am doing this degree thing, and occasionally we get (totally unreasonably) asked to do some actual work, and exams etc etc. I've already written a sternly worded email to some MP or other about how I feel and I'm certain the entire existing academic system will bend to my finally-honed student opinion.

I'm in the extraordinarily fortunate position of having come into possession (at no cost to myself) of a catalogue. I think it's a catalogue anyway, it pitches itself as a "Summer Term Handbook".
Well anyway it has clothes in it, and prices, and is adorned with that brand name associated with every floppy haired public school ponce in Britain. It is, of course, a Jack Wills catalogue.

Or to give it the full title, Jack Wills University Outfitters Fabulously British Summer Term Handbook (I shit you not).

Or to give it its proper title, The Jack Wills Guide on How To Dress Like a Dickhole for Lots of Money.

I think my expectations of such a document were understandably low when I picked it up, but my GOD does it exceed all of them. I can't believe society tolerates people buying this kind of garish, hideous, clashing, overpriced turd instead of throwing them into a hideous lime-green polka dot insane asylum. Some of the skirts in this book look as though a square of fabric had dolly-mixture shat onto it and a few buttons attached. The models are so ridiculously overdressed they might've been shot with a wardrobe cannon, and the jumpers would make the most knit-happy Grandmother fall on her needles in shame. But the worst, the absolute WORST thing is the prices.

I will probably at some point put some pictures up from the catalogue to illustrate the insanely entertaining hobby of filling in the gap where the photographer cut the head off the model in the photo. For the meantime, I'll pick a few prime examples where I swear some joker buggered around with the printing and added some extra zeroes onto the prices.

Because the Jack Wills website was coded by an overkeen programmer who's just discovered Flash, it's sort of hard to put pictures up.... at any rate, imagine if you will a flowery, mid-thigh length dress with a bow on the front (strapless, if you really care). I guess a large number of asian orphans died making it because it's a staggering £300. THREE HUNDRED. You could buy a car for that. Or maybe (if you're of the feminine persuasion) a really fancy ball gown, but this is a bloody silly frock thing. You'd look classier in a tutu.

There's a jumper here, which is the kind of thing your dear, old, senile granny might give you for Christmas and which you'd lovingly bury deep in your wardrobe and hope never to see again. Mr Wills, however, thinks you'd pay £100 of your hard earned money for the privilege of dressing up like a tosser. There are far cheaper ways of destroying your social life and damaging everybody's eyesight. These two items (one, two), for example.

I can't possibly continue this to the end, but it goes on. There are bikinis made from dental floss for £50, socks for over £20, stupid camp-looking shirts that would make Boy George hack up blood for £35, and it's a good job it's clearly divided into men and women's clothes because, like emos, you can't tell by looking at them. There's a target market here which looks like people who hate owning money and don't have any mirrors. If you're one of those weird people who values currency you'd rightly laugh in the face of anyone cretinous enough to think this sort of stuff makes you look anything more than a pastel-shaded douchebag.

I think the people who see genuine attraction in this stuff probably get their well-off noses stuck in the front fifty pages for a good few hours and have lost all mental faculties by the time they begin to order things. This is because the first portion of this catalogue/well-photographed-freakshow is dedicated to basically soft-porn. Sure there's a couple of photos of people just wearing the clothes and looking like run-of-the-mill retards, but there's also a good number dedicated to barely (or not) concealed female toplessness, females cuddling, females in not-enough-clothes frolicking etc etc etc. Playboy probably ask them for ideas. Surely there's a time and a place for that sort of thing? I guess the lonelier guys out there might resort to a clothes catalogue for self gratification if it came to it but the whole affair looks awkward and pointless, like a hippo pole-dancing.

There's a lot more to be said for this frankly hilarious (and troubling) collection of pages which I might share in good time, but for now just remember that if you're ever tempted by this sort of thing there are perfectly decent, and cheap, plastic bags available in all manner of colours for you to poke your limbs and torso through.

And at the end of it, people will still be able to tell what sex you are.


Monday, 24 May 2010


Never before have I ventured into an exam with the feeling that I have nothing but the most tenuous grasp of a subject. Curse you statistical mechanics!!

Zero Punctuation will keep me happy until my untimely intellectual demise.

Monday, 10 May 2010

In a departure from the norm....

Despite there being plenty for me to throw my sarcasm at (in big, angry lumps) I fear anything I had to talk about, for instance the hanged hung parliament and all its traits, would be disappointingly predictable, and lead to what I call "McDonalds Syndrome" (expecting something to be pretty good, then feeling decidedly let-down once you've finished it).

Since you clearly care what I think, or you wouldn't bother reading this, I figure I'd change for a bit and outline what I've been doing with my ever-so-varied life. This isn't meant to come across as a bout of "I'm more interesting than you!", but then again if you feel that way I probably am, because I don't think things are particularly exciting atm.

What I've Been Doing:
Clearly, from my recent history, I haven't been posting much up here. This is partly because I find myself spending WAY too much time on my laptop and not enough time say, socialising, hosting BBQs or playing Laser Tag at silly hours. None of this is for lack of trying.

Yesterday I devoted my valuable time trying to help park around 10,000 cars for a country show using a hoard of eager ATC cadets. That turned out pretty well. Some of them even paid attention, and all avoided getting crushed by the public.

I'm also planning a holiday for summer, starting to revise for exams, maintain a website, play guitar once in a while, see my Girlfriend as often as I can, watch House, and try (in vain) to find people to play squash with. It's a full time occupation, being a student. The days when I wake up and find myself busy until I fall asleep are the best ones. Sitting alone in my room when no-one's feeling social is pretty soul-destroying. There's plenty of time for that when I've been forced out of this haven of socialising and intellectualism, and spat unceremoniously into the world of work (and expensive drinks).

What I've Been Watching.

That's one of the funniest videos I've seen in ages.

Also Iron Man 2. It's amazing. Go see it. Immediately.

What I've Been Listening To:
Aside from the reassuringly eloquent tones of Radio 4 and the Friday Night Comedy podcast relentlessly mocking the UK's politicians, I remain addicted to a fantastical album by a bunch of Americanians called Marianas Trench. It's called Masterpiece Theatre and it's possibly one of the greatest collections of music I've heard in living memory- from the uplifting, fun stuff, through the songs that make you feel all nostalgic, to the incredibly emotional, and the unbelievably catchy. So the guy is ugly, and the singing is an acquired taste, but I love it and thought some of you might fancy a new listening experience (unless you're the person who introduced this album to me. You know who you are!).

What I've Been Thinking About:
A lot of things you might expect: exams, how awesome Iron Man 2 was, how things taste better when they're cheaper, etc. etc. Err..... at the moment I'm thinking I really want to watch Crank. Might have to see if there are some web-versions floating about. If you're into awesome action and you like fellas like Stallone, Jason Statham, Mickey Rourke, Jet Li, and guest appearances from Arnie and Bruce Willis, (ie. if you have any form of vague interest in action films, at all, ever) you'll want to check out the Expendables which is coming out later this year!

Also, I've thought about Google ads- which will shortly be coming to this blog. Brace yourselves!

Been thinking about exams, which you probably don't care about...

Finally, I've been wondering, as any sane person would, about relationships. I like to think I rationalise things a lot. You might've guessed by now I like reasons for things (Greg House has the right idea). Some things continue to surprise me.
I don't know if any of you reading this might be in a similar situation, but I find it strange that I can be in a relation with a girl who's so... fantastically different to me, and it feel like the best thing in the world. I know opposites attract, but clearly there's some line there- I imagine a Hippy and Bill Gates wouldn't do too well in a relationship, and people with wildly differing world views would probably end up yelling at each other over dinner about why the other person's favoured political party are crap.

At any rate, I've just been feeling pretty lucky at the minute for finding someone who's ridiculously attractive, fun, happy, exciting and at the same time; different from me in only the right ways. It feels utterly perfect, without any sort of rational reasoning.

I'm grateful for that :)

Anyway.... I think I'm coming to the end of my introspective little jaunt. I will probably resume ranting in good time, but in the meantime, feel free to share some thoughts about your life (here or Facebook). It's always interesting.


Thursday, 6 May 2010

Election Special

Just wanted to briefly share this vitally important news with you on this election day: