Tuesday, 30 November 2010
The rabbit approves of this sort of witty, down up dissent. Get the t-shirt! Hat Tip to Fred Langa via Charon QC and welcome back to Carol via assorted indignities of the above sort at Logan International Airport.
Monday, 29 November 2010
Sunday, 28 November 2010
But he won't and there's nothing the judges can do about it. Not so long as the public keep voting for him. What exactly is going on here? And why is something similar happening on Strictly Come Dancing?
For overseas readers and the terminally inattentive, the large purplish blob above is called Ann Widdecombe. The aforesaid Ann Widdecombe, a retired Conservative politician is a contestant on Strictly Come Dancing. Before this, she was simply known for (a) being a 63 year old virgin (b) converting from the Church of England to Roman Catholicism in fright at the idea of women priests (c) some unpleasantness when she was Prisons Minister involving pregnant prisoners being shackled to the delivery bed when giving birth (d) looking like a hippo. Oh and the counterintuitive bit is that she is against foxhunting. Now the rabbit has actually seen a little of this programme and can comment on Widders (as she has become affectionately known since she became national treasure and everybody's favourite batty aunt) dancing abilities.
Can she dance? Nope. She is crap.
Has this stopped the public voting for her in the face of noisy condemnation from the judges? Nope. Comparably talentless political journalist John Sergeant withdrew last year (or whenever it was) when it looked like there was a serious danger that he might win. Widders has no such scruples. She's in it to win it.
Now there is plainly a pattern here. Why is the public kicking over the traces? Well, firstly, the British love a loser. It's hardwired into our DNA. As is irony. There is plainly a pair of ironic statements going on. Mostly, though it seems to be about blowing a very loud raspberry to the professionals in general and Simon Cowell in particular. There is a 'Wagner to Win X Factor’ facebook page with 44,600 members (and no doubt rising) run by a 39 year old named Mark Mordue who lives with his mother in her Newcastle council house (bless!). ‘I can’t wait to see the look on Cowell’s face if Wagner wins. I hope it teaches him a lesson' announced Mark.
In the meantime, Cowell appears to have lost the plot, denouncing fellow judge and Wagner baiter Cheryl Cole as 'mad'. Cowell also compared (male) judge Louis Walsh to (very former) Coronation Street character Ena Sharples (below).
Turning to matters cricketing, the rabbit has not commented so far on the First Ashes Test in Brisbane. This is not through lack of interest but because - one way or the other - he can barely look. 'It’s not the despair. I can cope with the despair. It’s the hope. That’s what’s killing me' – John Cleese, Clockwise. At the end of day 4 the scores stand at England 260 & 309/1, Australia 481. It will almost certainly be a draw. Yes, a sporting contest that lasts 5 days and does not produce a result may seem weird - but in the case of the present Test also utterly compulsive. This is as good as it gets. Above is a group of Barmy Army (travelling English supporters) making a lot of noise on day 1 - and obviously annoying lots of elderly Australians.
Oh and with Hat Tip to jailhouselawyer for introducing him to them, the rabbit has become a big fan of the Daily Telegraph animal pictures of the week . The link has this week's crop. Particular fun are images 7 (a bull being chased by a crane) and 11 (a pelican with a beer bottle).
Saturday, 27 November 2010
Phew! The rabbit thought that he had lost the entire content of his distinguished blog except for the first part of yesterdays posting. A very unhappy rabbit ensued. But it's back now by virtue of deleting yesterday's posting and pasting a copy, minus the Janis Joplin song - which I think was causing the trouble for some obscure reason. The comments went too but I'll copy and paste them and re-post!
After that drama, a few musings. Is it necessary to be nuts to be in charge of a major European country these days? Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi and his strange statue related behaviour has figured recently here. And the less said about Russian head honcho Vladimir Putin the better. Now the spotlight turns to French President Nicolas Sarkozy (above) whose behaviour gets increasingly erratic. Sarkozy, it should be explained, is a distinctly short person mostly noted for having a tall, attractive wife. He is also noted for having a filthy temper, which does not play well with the French who like their President - well - Presidential.
Sarkozy was in the poo back in 2008 for getting abusive with a grumpy farmer (is there any other sort?) and telling him 'casse-toi, alors pauvre con'. Now the rabbit knows some French and this is very rude indeed, particularly the last word. Various online commenters have attempted translations but the rabbit is saying nuffin. In fairness to Sarkozy, the farmer had refused the Presidential attempted handshake with a rude remark of his own to the effect that he didn't want to dirty his hand.
So Sarkozy has been on his best behaviour since, he having an unpopular austerity package to put through (in the face of the rather splendid French usual reaction to anything that annoys them - namely rioting) and an election to win in 2012 (an increasingly unlikely looking prospect). Now he is at it again. The latest cause of his ire is journalists. There is a scandal bubbling under which threatens to daraw in Sarkozy relating to arranged bribes and kickbacks for submarines for Pakistan. Questioned about this, Sarkozy latched on to one journalist, tipped his little head back and went for it...
'And you! I've no evidence against you. But it would seem you're a paedophile. Who told me? I have an absolute conviction. I've seen the intelligence reports but I won't tell you which ones; I've seen someone but I won't tell you who, and it was word of mouth. But I have an absolute conviction you're a paedophile ... Can you explain yourself?'
As may be imagined, this has not been well received. German Chancellor Angela Merkel may be boring but at least she isn't nuts. And her name sounds like merkin - which is a pubic wig. What is the point of a pubic wig anyway? Jus askin.
On a personal note, the rabbit has secured a flat in London. It's nothing special and isn't as nice as the flat in Birmingham but will do for now. The move is necessary as the move to Birmingham was necessary about eighteen months ago. The actual move is 2-3 weeks away. I've done a couple of blogs on Birmingham and will do another nearer the time. I walked through central Birmingham today at lunchtime on the same route as I described a while ago in the posting here. There was a Salvation Army band today at the Bullring playing Christmas carols but the Socialist Workers Party were in their usual space addressing the passing shoppers on the topic of government of the rich, by the rich for the rich (they are against this). There were also some native South American people who play rather lovely haunting music on pipes in the middle of the (pedestrianised) High Street and, further on and round the corner, a string quartet of middle-aged ladies wrapped up warm against the cold were playing - I think - Mozart. It is time to move on but I will always have a soft spot for Birmingham, a necessary refuge in the middle of last year and continuing (for the moment)... Below is a nice Birmingham related image - the Brindley canal (yes, Birmingham does have more canals than Venice)
The South American musicians made me think of El Condor Pasa - so here it is.
La Berzina is standing by her man, which is nice. 'We are still together, absolutely. But I don't want to talk about what has happened. I don't need any publicity' she announced. Hauled before the Westminster Magistrates Court and after a night in the cells to reflect on the error of his ways, Nords admitted three charges of not paying for goods and services and asked for another six offences to be taken into consideration. He was sentenced to a community order with curfew, tagging and a bar from six London postcodes (the ones where the posh restaurants are). The court heard that Berzina was herself penniless and was very rude to police officers. One can only tut at such bad manners. His lawyer advised the court 'I also suspect there was an element of fantasy in Mr Nords' thinking...'
There's only one song to post with this...
On a completely different topic, the rabbit has just discovered Chinese artist Liu Bolin. What he does is seriously off centre. He paints himself - with a little help from an assistant - to blend in with his surroundings. Like so..
Meanwhile the poor old bishop of Willesden has been suspended following - erm - somewhat excitable remarks about the forthcoming royal wedding. The date has now been fixed for the nuptuals, namely the 29th April. The date has an unfortunate precedent as the anniversary of the wedding of a certain Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun - a wedding that ended in homicide and suicide less than 40 hours later.
Thursday, 25 November 2010
The rabbit would like to take this opportunity to wish all his American readers a Happy Thanksgiving! He now actually knows when it is (we don't have it here - I suppose the nearest equivalent is Harvest Festival - a very low key event by comparison). It's always the fourth Thursday in November! Unless you are in Canada apparently. The day after Thanksgiving is known as Black Friday (the rabbit has also learned) and is the busiest day of the year if you are a plumber. This is perhaps not a thought to dwell on.
As a parting shot and on a totally different topic, Mahal draws the rabbit's attention to Miss Plastic 2010 - an event in Hungary for, er, surgically enhanced contestants. Below is a clip for the 2009 version of this auspicious event. 'Nuff said...
Tuesday, 23 November 2010
The rabbit was fascinated by old aeroplanes as a boy. This image dates from 1918 and there is plainly a story behind it. the woman is dressed in a leather coat suggesting that perhaps she was one of what must have been the first female pilots.
Above is from 1938 and Omaha, Nebraska and is titled 'liquor store signs'.
Southern chain gang 1905. Wouldn't want to have been them. But in tribute to all those brutalised lives here is Bruce from that amazing 1985 Paris concert and Working on the Highway.
Monday, 22 November 2010
Okay American readers - this is (sort of) about cricket but bear with me. Hostilities resume in the greatest sporting show on Earth - The Ashes - on Thursday and the rabbit cannot wait. England have not won in Australia since 1986/7 but start as slight favourites. All is well in the England camp as can be seen from the above video diary by Graeme Swann who - as well as being the best spin bowler in the world - is a natural comedian. At about 8 minutes into the clip, the team introduce an unsuspecting world to the sprinkle dance. Take a look! Amusingly and amazingly, the sprinkle dance has wound the Australian media up - they are complaining that the insolent Poms are practising their victory dance before - erm - winning. Nice to see the Australian media in such a febrile state of mind.
I must confess to never having heard of artist Len Shelley in life but only discovered him through obituaries following his recent death. A number of his best-known works were three dimensional 'art in a box' as above - the splendidly titled Father Built Me a House But Decided to Live in it Himself.
Not to mention the even more wonderfully titled I Saw Grandfather Hoarding Tripe.
And finally - erm - Henry's Parents... I'm sorry. I couldn't help myself.
Finally, while on the same - ahem - subject and without further comment, Mahal has drawn the rabbit's attention to an inevitable consequence of the surveillance state.
Sunday, 21 November 2010
Apparently the new penis is equipped with a magnet. No, I don't follow that bit either. It will also be noted that Venus has re-grown her right hand, all the better to...
Oh never mind. Berlusconi had been hit by a tidal wave of criticism (and this in a country where the Prime Minister owns or controls a large swathe of the media thus avoiding those pesky contrary opinions by and large) for grandiosity, messing with antiquities and by contrast to neglect of various other national treasures, for example the site of the Pompeii excavations, in urgent need of attention.
While on the subject of knobs, the above is Grant Shapps who is presently Minister of State for Housing and Planning. Until the last election, the rabbit was happily ignorant of the existence of Mr Shapps but suddenly he is all over the media like a rash. The rabbit finds him deeply annoying, and not just as another example of the tendency of politicians to look like Alfred E Neuman. It's his oleagenous smugness methinks.
Accordingly the rabbit awards Mr Shapps the first White Rabbit Knob of the Week award...
By Way of contrast, the inaugural Golden Rabbit is awarded to the Bishop of Willesden, Pete Broadbent, who has had a huge amount of odium heaped on his head for some disobliging remarks as regards the royal engagement. You go bishop
Finally, above is a Catalan Socialist Party election broadcast (yes, it was official and not a piece of freelancing). You never knew voting could be such good fun, did you? Hat Tip to Laci the Dog.
Thursday, 18 November 2010
The rabbit has to hop down to London for a couple of days so here to fill in the space thus caused is Killer Bunny from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. And firm but fair the white furry creature is, I'm sure all will agree.
Continuing the rabbit theme, let it never be said that White Rabbit doesn't do cute. Here is a baby rabbit with mother. Hat Tip to rabbits online, though having led a sheltered life, the rabbit pronounces himself quite mystified by this. All very odd...
Wednesday, 17 November 2010
Meanwhile the male half of the couple featured in yesterday's posting has been arrested at L'Oranger restaurant after running out leaving behind a £1,000+ bill but was detained by waiters. The woman was arrested at a flat in Stoke Newington. It turns out that this was the fifth time the couple - who are from Latvia - have pulled this skank. In addition to the two already mentioned an £800 bill was left unpaid at the Michelin-starred Hélène Darroze at the Connaught in Mayfair plus - erm - visits to the Glasshouse in Kew and Pearl restaurant at the Chancery Court Hotel in Holborn, each time slipping out for a cigarette break before vanishing.
It strikes the rabbit that like a lot of criminals their undoing was not knowing when to stop. Below is the scene of their demise.
Tuesday, 16 November 2010
Then came the cigarette break. the staff sportingly helped them on with their coats. A plum tart and millfeuille was delivered to their table.
They never returned to eat the third course. They legged it leaving a bill for £572.74 unpaid (that's $908.96 American persons!). The restaurant's general manager is quoted as saying 'their bill was an average spend. Nothing was out of place or unusual'.
The weird thing is that they booked the table in the name of Lupin, seemingly a reference to Arsène Lupin, a fictional French gentleman thief. Police are looking for the couple and the one detail they may have overlooked (see above) is that there is CCTV everywhere these days. That was the mistake Mary Bale the Coventry cat binner made as readers may recall.
While on the subject of very expensive rounds, Australian cricket sponsor Victoria Bitter has promised free beer for every Australian adult if Australia regain the Ashes. Somehow this very expensive promise suggests that they don't think it's going to happen...
Sunday, 14 November 2010
The above appears to be a Portaloo in the middle of sandflats. I don't know why or where but my curiosity is aroused which I suppose is the whole point.
Strangely (apart from Portaloo pic) the photographs were taken at a strange 'sporting' event - a spinoff from drag racing - in which the contestants lock their brakes and spin their real wheels until they explode. No, I don't know why people turn up to watch this either. Must be an Australian thing.
Finally and to totally change the topic, as a rabbit service, here is quantitative easing helpfully explained. Let it never said that the rabbit is other than educational...