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Hotel life – at your inconvenience

I’ve recently spent a couple of nights in a hotel. Obviously, it was awful. Not calamitously bad or anything, just irritatingly not quite right. Once the fundamentals had been dealt with, like; ‘Is it clean?’, ‘Are there spiders?’ and ‘Are you sure there aren’t any spiders?’ the experience was a journey into crushing disappointment and frustrated inconvenience.

The plug sockets were apparently deliberately installed by a maniacal electrician with a degree in evil. They knew how to place them precisely in entirely the right place to render them either inaccessible or useless.

Could I plug my phone in by the bed and use it as a clock so I could see exactly what time it was when I was awoken by another guest noisily using their loo? No. Any future visits to waterfalls will remind me of the horror.

The gap under the room’s door was so wide, even a moderately competent limbo dancer would have had no problem squeezing underneath. We had to line up the copious cushions from the bed across t…
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The Great British Freak Off

I had a really weird dream the other night. There were sentient, singing, cakes vomiting and being sliced up. Truly Nightmarish. Alarmingly, it turned out to be real, and manifested itself in the form of a trailer for Channel 4’s take-over of “nice buns” TV show The Great British Bake Off, which will be appearing on our screens again soon, apparently.

Whilst the show itself features only one star from it’s time on the BBC, in the form of judge Paul Hollywood, the presence of some new big names would have seemingly provided the channel with an opportunity to fanfare their exciting line-up with aplomb.

Instead of Prue Leith, Sandi Toksvig and Noel Fielding gracing our screens with an amuse bouche of the forthcoming show’s sweet and savoury delights, we were instead force fed a one minute, stop motion/speeded up/animated baking freak show.

Amongst the doughy plaits, smiling cakes and gigantically-hipped bread people rising in a oven, a parade of weird floury visions honked-up cheese as …

Scarramuchi, Scarramuchi... will you view the flan-nan-show?

Yes, I’ll admit it took me a long time to come up with that Bohemian Rhapsody-based headline, following two stories vying for my attention this week.
First up, we have the latest victim in the greatest/strangest reality show on the planet, hosted by that zany guy with the overly-long tie, Donald “You’re Fired!” Trump. Maybe we could call it White House Big Bother?

Since getting himself comfy in the Oval Office’s chair, the President has been busily increasing the unemployment level of the USofA by firing people so quickly, some of them probably hadn’t even had sufficient time to being their own mug in and figure out how many sugars everyone else had.

I bet there’s hardly a day goes by without another “Sorry you’re leaving” card doing the rounds. Acting attorney general, Sally Yates, managed 10 days of employment before getting the boot – I’ve had colds that lasted longer than that.

Michael Flynn was, briefly, national security adviser for a mammoth 23 days – a timeframe short enough …

When it rains it pours

“...and that’s why this particular budgie won’t be dancing on the ceiling any time soon. And now it’s over to Simon for the weather.” “Thanks, Kirsty. Your forecast for the weekend, then – Saturday will be cloudy, with sudden cataclysmic outbreaks of rain, whilst Sunday looks even worse, with a high chance of apocalyptic conditions throughout the day, and a light south easterly breeze. Temperatures around normal for the time of year. The outlook for next week? Well, in one word – Biblical. So, not looking great, Kirsty!”

“No indeed, Simon. Definitely not barbeque weather – unless you can strap it to a canoe. If you survive, see you on Monday. Goodnight!”

OK, so that might seem a tad far-fetched, but according to the Met Office, there’s a significantly increased risk of winter downpours, which they’re cheerily describing as “unprecedented”.

By chucking a large amount of data into a supercomputer and waiting for a bit, the Met Office officers were met with a report in their offices whic…

The Regeneration Game (Director's Cut)

Doctor Who, the 13th Doctor – Episode 1. “Invasion of the Manbabies”. Starring Jodie Whittaker. CONFIDENTIAL – NOT TO BE RELEASED. 

Scene 1 - Interior, TARDIS. 

Doctor: Wow, this regeneration business is rough, but I feel like a new man!

Assistant: Woman. Doctor: Eh? (Looks down) Crikey, I wasn’t expecting THIS!

Assistant: Really? Everybody else was.

Doctor: Didn’t you get killed off at the end of the last series, by the way? Cybermen or something similar?

Assistant: No, that was the gay one. I’m the androgynous, gender-fluid one.

Doctor: Strange, I don’t remember you. You know you’re... green, right? And have antennae? 

Assistant: Of course, and they’re not antennae. (The Assistant winks with one of their three eyes.)

Doctor: Crikey! (pause) I think I might use that as a catchphrase.

Assistant: It’s not as good as “Geronimo” or “Alonsee”.

Doctor: Do you have a name, then?

Assistant: Yes, it’s Dactar. Dactar Woo.

Doctor: Great – I can’t see any problem with that at all.

(The TARDIS alarm starts …

The Regeneration Game

Doctor Who, the 13th Doctor – Episode 1. “Invasion of the Manbabies”. Starring Jodie Whittaker.CONFIDENTIAL – NOT TO BE RELEASED. Scene: Interior, TARDIS.

Doctor: Wow, this regeneration business is rough, but I feel like a new man! (Looks down) Crikey, I wasn’t expecting THIS!

Assistant: Really? Everybody else was.

Doctor: Strange, I don’t remember you. Nice antennae!

Assistant: They’re not antennae. (Assistant winks.)

Doctor: Crikey!

(TARDIS alarm chimes ominously. Everything looks shaky whilst the Doctor and Assistant cling to the console.)

Doctor: Ooo, exciting! I think we’re crashing! CRIKEY!

Scene: Exterior shot of TARDIS . Door opens and the Doctor and Assistant stumble out. Sounds of angry mob approaching. 

Doctor: I haven’t even had time to change – these Y-fronts are bloody uncomfortable. Who are these people anyway?

Assistant: Oh, no – Doctor, it’s the Manbabies!

(A portly white male approaches – 50ish, balding, wearing a Star Trek T-shirt that’s one size too small, with curry stai…

Battles on track and off as F1 comes home

The Formula 1 motor racing circus pitches up at Silverstone this weekend for the British Grand Prix, and the battles aren’t just between the drivers. Just as the tension of the most exciting season for years reaches a peak, the international, multi-million pound, fast car spectacle rocks up in the UK. It’s a good job F1 doesn’t use a starter’s pistol to get the races underway – The people behind the British GP would have repeatedly shot themselves in the foot by now.

The hallowed tarmac of Northamptonshire’s Silverstone circuit will play host to 20 cars and drivers and everything that goes with it, just as the circuit’s owners announce that they’re taking up a get-out clause in their contract after the 2019 race.

Despite the staggering amounts of cash sloshing around the sport, the British Racing Drivers’ Club (BRDC) say they have “reached the tipping point”, and won’t be able to continue losing millions of pounds every time they host the race.

With many other events around the world…