‘atlas’s task is easy; it is sufficient to choose one’s hour’

and for now the hour is light; oh look, there’s a puppy


i’ve turned; this’ll get sweary

i’m behind; i’m behind on work, i’m behind on blog reading, i’m behind on blog writing, i’m behind on writing this fucking letter that i’ve been meaning to write for fucking ages and i just can’t bring myself to carry on; i’ve written a bit of it and now i can’t be shagged, and some fucking cunt keeps stealing my mop, how hard is it to put it back where you fucking found it, and not leave it in a bucket of shitty water either; take it, by all means take the fucking thing, mop the pissing car park with it, deliver calves with it, fuck yourself up the arse with it until you haemorrhage, i don’t care, just so long as you put it back in the fucking cupboard where i left it you fucking wanker; you don’t know who you are; i could leave a great fucking note on it, ‘will the bollock brain who keeps dumping this fucking mop wherever his retarded brain that is in fact a bollock feels like fucking dumping it, stop fucking dumping it wherever his brain that is in fact a bollock feels like fucking dumping it, you fucking prick,’ and old bollock brain would walk up to it, read the note and say, “oo someone’s pissed this mop off haven’t they, i best use it and then leave it in a bucket of shitty water somewhere,” why don’t i just write the fucking letter; with each wasted tap of these stupid keys i could be letter composing, i could be saying, “well my dear i used to knock around with soe during the war, finnish is my bag; can’t stand german, love the people though; however i knew a girl once who spoke a bit of german, good conversational german; i fell in love with her and it seems the german language too, though only when spoken by her, i mean you, i think i’ve got sidetracked; i think it was the welsh wanker at the bar who really fucked me off tonight; just an obnoxious twat, thinking that without him i’d just be sleeping or something, that i don’t actually have actual fucking work to do; he’s somehow doing me a favour through his very existence and presence at the bar and i should be grateful that someone of his calibre is keeping me off the streets, and his hilarious wank jokes the epitome of comedic genius, fuckend, i hope he gets the squits; i know why i’m not writing the letter, there’s just no point; there’s no point in anything, i have a vague hope at the back of my mind that spouting this shit will make me feel better because, as we all fucking know, a hundred and twelfth time’s a charm; it used to work when i sent this shit to her; it wasn’t the cathartic process of outpouring that helped, it was just her, it was always and only her, and now i have a horrible feeling that whilst it was just a slim possibility before, it has now become a great big fucking hulk of a certainty that i will never see her again and all i have are just a bunch of stupid shitting memories that sometimes i could really fucking do without; i can taste her now, and i just don’t want to; i can see the smile on her face and the look in her eye the last time she straddled me on the chair in her kitchen; stupid cunting welshman; two moths at a mcdonald’s drive-through, one says to the other, “i hate this fucking place; all it stands for is abhorrent to me, yet here i am waiting on a sloppy big mac made from an unspecified animal’s sphincter, fries wetter than an incontinent’s bed sheets and a milk shake hand-wrung from those very same sheets; i’ve no desire to go on facebook nor use it as a verb, but i admired it ’til last night; zuckerberg you twat; you deliberately laid your first tile on the road to macdonalddom; there weren’t enough people doing that for you it seems,” the other moth says, “which window did they say? i missed what window they said; i hate it when that happens, i just wanna slit my wrists, or at least regress back to being a caterpillar; it was so much simpler then, no fucking stupid shitty fucking cunty welshmen to deal with, twat,” and then they both got dysentery and wrote a fucking book about overcoming obstacles that only they know about but everyone’s supposed to have empathy with; it’s the mop, it’s the fucking bastard cunty mop; where the shitting hell is it; i don’t even care, it saves me a job; one’ll turn up and i’ll find another hiding place for it, but this time i’ll not tell any fucker at all; when bollock brain asks i’ll say i don’t know, as some fucking bollock brain put it somewhere and i can’t fucking find it………it’ll make me fucking laugh

was it really noah’s ark?

this article is the first part of a lengthier piece from the daily harbinger, or rather it will be from the daily harbinger, it still has a few alterations to be made – editor’s notes are included – but it’s due to go in tomorrow’s edition……use it wisely

Galileo Galilei, Charles Darwin, …….[Editor’s note: really?? no fucker else??? at all???????], illustrious names synonymous with shattering previously held notions about God, human origins and religion in general. Today we may be able to add another name to the list; that of the little known, but in his circles highly regarded, Welsh archaeologist Sir Benedictine Thundersnatch III.

Or perhaps it is not his name we should be adding, but that of God himself.

After a mysterious anonymous tipoff at Sir Benedictine’s offices in Port Talbot, he has spent the last two years combing every inch of Mount Ararat in Turkey, the purported final resting place of Noah’s Ark, looking for evidence that not only did Noah not build the Ark, but that God was tricked into believing he did; giving rise to serious questions about God’s omnipotence.

We have managed to secure an exclusive interview with Sir Benedictine who tells us how it all started:

“Well boyo, I was sitting in my office one day pretending to work but actually playing Angry Birds, when this brown A4 envelope was pushed under my door. I thought, ‘What the ruddy blime is this all about?’ because I’m extremely open when it comes to knocks at my door; ever since my intern days when I was bombarded by people giving me rubbish things to do, I’d reached the end of my tether one day and was just about to tell the next person who knocked on my door to fuck off back to Jericho – an in joke at the time – when who should enter but none other than Kathleen Kenyon! Well my bloody jaw dropped into my y-fronts, which in turn dropped to the floor; man the woman was insatiable! Not much of  looker but boy could she [Editor’s note: I think we can probably dispense with the gratuitous details of how his office desk was broken don’t you?] So as I say, everyone knows that knocking is always an option, so I was surprised that this was slipped under the door. I picked it up, and ran out into the hall seeing if I could stop the covert posty but to no avail; bugger had gone. I sat at my desk and read the envelope’s contents.

“Now, I’ve had some bloody crazy theories passed on to me, no idea why so many though, but they make me tickle so I humour them you know, but this one was different; apart from the fact that it was well constructed – I had a map drawn in crayon given to me once detailing the whereabouts of Shangri-La: the car park of a Lidl in Sheffield apparently! quite ridiculous [Editor’s note: our research suggests otherwise]. So anyway, well constructed, yes, but so plausible in its presentation of the evidence gathered so far; needless to say I was hooked.”

The evidence to which Sir Benedictine refers, relates particularly to an English translation of an old Hebrew text that appears to have been omitted, not only from the Bible, but from existence itself; great pains were taken to destroy its contents. A copy of the English version (written in the mid 15th century) was included in the envelope, the original viewed at a later date, and included these remarkable lines:

“and god schuld bere witnessynge of the list, that Noa, Emsra, Iapheth, Shem, Hame, Beti and Iorg did stowe abord the arke born of the glorie of hym as seuen chupacabra. Who so shal bringeth thees fro the derknessis to gods ligt will be resceyueden bi hym etirnl liif, and the list flo fleisch and blodis…..”

This passage is essentially a warrant for Noah and his family and friends’ arrest for sneaking aboard the ark as chupacabras, and their subsequent sentence to grisly death.

It therefore begged the question; if Noah had built the Ark, why did he and his family need to sneak aboard? The answer lay in the snowy peaks of Mount Ararat, and the seemingly innocuous family run business of ‘Fred’s Fisheries’ in Grimsby.

Sir Benedictine takes up the story:

“Well I got straight on the phone to my mate Gerry from Swansea and told him to book us two tickets to Turkey as soon as possible, I told him I didn’t have time to explain why but we did manage to justify every fullback decision made by the Welsh national team since 1954 – amazing what gets prioritised isn’t it?

“So anyway, we landed in Turkey and were arrested; apparently ‘Benedictine Thundersnatch’ is Turkish for ‘I like Jewish testicles in my mouth for purely pleasurable purposes,’ – the Turks have such a concise language – so after three months of unbearable sexual torture – I say unbearable…..it wasn’t all bad – we were released with full pardons and debilitating nightmares, but we were professionals, we had a job to do, so carried on. I seem to court trouble and adventure whatever I do; I put up some shelves once, I hammered in one nail and I lost my foot. Here feel; pure ivory that.”

After preliminary reasearch yielded whole swathes of Mount Ararat that hadn’t been properly searched and catalogued, Sir Benedictine called in his usual team; the results were fascinating:

“Didn’t find a bloody thing. Not for ages, we were seriously considering packing the whole thing in, but then we found the carving; what we termed ‘the Trademark’!”

Sir Benedictine’s seventy year old eyes light up with the excitement of a child as he recalls the moment:

“Gerry was pissed as a fart he was, and fell down a ravine; I’ve never actually seen anyone actually bounce before, but that’s what he did, bounce like a ball! Bloody hilarious it was, and he landed face first onto a plank of wood, broke his nose in fact; he’s a martyr to his work. But anyway, this piece of wood, we could tell just by looking at it that it was something different; it sobered Gerry up quick sharp, we cordoned off the area and set the lads to working while we went back to the lab with this bit of wood.”

What they in fact appeared at first analysis to have discovered [Editor’s note: good god man what kind of fucking sentence construction is that?!] was a plank of wood used in the hull of a ship; carbon dating and chemical analysis subsequently revealed that the date and geography of use placed it almost exactly in the area believed to be where Noah’s Ark came to rest. This in itself was cause for celebration, but what was also noted was a faint patch that looked to have been carved into the wood, and after extensive examination and cross-referencing to the files slid under Sir Benedictine’s office door they had discovered the markings left by a fisherman named Frederick, who also happened to construct his own fishing boats.

It seemed that the first piece of evidence corroborating the claims made by the 550 year old manuscript had been discovered.

Next week Sir Benedictine Thundersnatch III continues his retelling of what happened in the gathering of more evidence relating to the real builder of the Ark, and how this fisherman’s God-fearing descendents weren’t entirely happy with the news. [Editor’s note: I can hardly fucking wait]

written by Ethelred Stapler – Historical Correspondent

fred’s ark


right, emzara, have you found any of those chupacabra’s yet?

no? well that’s what we’ll go as then…..oh i don’t know…..a small bear with spines running down it’s back, nothing too noticeable

must remember to tick the ‘clean’ box; are betty and george definitely coming because we’ll stick out like a sore thumb if there’s only five of us?

japheth, we’ll need more shovels!

shem, look at these drawings; door or window?

ham, find fred and let him know we’re subbing this out to his lot

and can someone please tell me how long a bloody cubit is!

flash fiction friday – i have seen the light


“hello! it’s mr pontoon-spitoon calling


“well it’s about your light; it’s on, it’s too bright and i’m trying to get to sleep

“of course i have curtains, they’re just not made of lead

“enough about my soft furnishings, what have you got that thing blazing so brightly for?

“you have sheep that can read?

“do they know you talk about them like that?

“how long will they be reading for?

“that’s quite a long time, big book is it?

“what’s the point in reading that?

“i’ve got one they can read; the origin of……hello?…….HELLO?………bloody do-gooder”

letter from the editor

this is in response to a letter sent on the 24th april to the editor of the daily harbinger from a somewhat irate mr habberdasher; his letter can be viewed here (at present the letter has been misplaced, but as soon as i’ve located it i’ll fix up the link….promise) the editor’s retort below is reproduced verbatim so i apologise profusely for all the fullstops, capital letters and syntactical accuracies:

Dear Mr. Habberdasher,

I am writing in response to your letter, dated 24th April 2012, in which you bring to light a number of issues you have with this paper’s edition of the same day.

First of all let me tell you that I am always open to a letter from one of our readers, especially one who has been so faithful as yourself over the years (I must admit I was obviously mistaken about the length of time we’ve been publishing the Harbinger based on the number of years you purport to have read it).

Allow me to answer your queries in turn and to the best of my abilities, and hopefully go some way in alleviating your concerns, thus retain you as an avid customer of our humble rag.

We strive to report the truth, although I feel this goes without saying I wish to iterate it, and much of the time this involves printing quotes, both from our named and anonymous sources, and not simply gratuitously; I stand by the use of, ‘harpy’, ‘bignose’, ‘bellend’ and ‘fuckabollock’ in the writing of the front page article and their integral part in its probity…….I must however admit i agree with you on the phrase, ‘she has the face of Simon Cowell excreting his own sense of self-satisfaction,’ it was an indulgence of only too human a form, but in general I back the piece on the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Kat Slater is not a real person.

Our article on fiscal management was intended to be facetious; just walking in to the Royal Bank of Scotland and demanding your share of the 84% back just because you don’t bank there is not how the world works; and whilst I always admire initiative and innovation, robbing the joint is a little more than just frowned upon and I therefore urge you to return the bonds (and tearing one up in to an appropriately sized fraction does not then bear relation to its subsequent value).

Ed Milliband is actually a real person.

I’m extremely sorry to hear about your sister and the loss of her leg in a shark attack just off the coast of Whitby; quite the anomaly I’m sure. However, I feel our ‘How to exercise cheaply in your own home’ – a superbly informative piece of advice on how to make use of your own furniture rather than expensive exercise machinery in order to get that body you’ve always wanted, written by another equally loyal reader, Dotty Headbanger – really can’t be blamed; the description of the kitchen table as a life raft was not intended to be taken literally (‘in your own home’ is clearly stated in the article’s title) and whilst I fully appreciate your sister’s extenuating circumstances, I think that the staff members of the institute at which your sister until recently resided should really be taking the greater proportion of the blame, if not all of it. But of course I will gladly run the ‘Wanted’ poster as long as it takes for the foul beast to be captured.

Tesco’s returns policy regarding tankinis is really nothing to do with me.

I do hope this goes some way towards mollifying your concerns Mr. Habberdasher, and should you at any point, on any issue, feel the need to contact me again, I would be delighted to hear from you and will do my utmost to help.

Yours most sincerely,

Jackson van Diemen – Editor in Chief

P.S. I shall be taking the liberty of sending you and your sister a gift to the address at the top of your letter – from what you tell me about the various conditions from which you both suffer, but the self-medication and sense of humour which help you both see the positives, i trust that a packet of Great White Shark cannabis seeds should do the trick.

ode to effexor

venlafaxine, venlafaxine

helps you when you need relaxin’

when the palps begin to bite

pop it quick you’ll be alright


no more weeping on the floor

no despair through every door

declare with utmost predication

the wonders of mood medication


the relationship though symbiotic

stops you going all psychotic

i loved you then, i love you now

you love yourself now take a bow


this ode is in reverence to dotty headbanger’s words on the wonders of prozac

the moon pilot says that whilst all things are transient, if a rock hits your head it’ll still hurt

and since in order to deserve respect one must preach by example, i hit the moon pilot’s head with a rock and sure enough it hurt; as respects were gathered with alms, and bandages wrapped to music, the moon pilot says – i don’t know why they hire me, this fucker flies itself; the moon pilot says many things, often in reply to the question – how many things do you know; one can then guess how silly this gets until someone points out that it matters not who is on first no-one’ll better jiggs donahue; the moon pilot then proceeds to call tide-control to make sure he’s flying at the right height in order to avoid any undue floods or pesky droughts, he then proceeds to take his redundant yoke and simulate a kamikaze attack, or a particularly fearsome dogfight over guadlacanal or malta, or pretend he’s a submarine pilot, whale, fog diviner; when asked what he’ll do if tide-control ever want him to alter his altitude, he replies – i shall tell them to fuck off…………we prayed to be present should this parle play out……….every friday he just makes shit up; goes through the whole day lying about stuff, saying how much he doesn’t enjoy being critiqued, how much he doesn’t think he has a great name by the way, how curtains aren’t to be trusted, how it’s impossible to cook with a vial of god’s wrath; thank fuck it only happens one day a week otherwise we’d suffer greatly and have to have him put down, but the big grasshopper smile he wears makes the lengendario easy swallowing…….and easily swallow it he does when the blues hit him; dark asteroids of fear and loathing bombard his soul, the toys in the attic fray and revolt, splinter into parasitic ticks burrowing under gangrenous, sloughing skin……and then he’s alright; remembers he has the moon to pretend to pilot and so becomes again the grasshopper; spiracly endowed with a violin under each arm, staring off sidewise in to the distance; we’re so far ahead but he thanks us sincerely for following

i’d like a breakdown

of the quarterly returns and the projected apple turnover from march through to wednesday, including all point to point verification nodules associated with the bi-monthly management meetings held in the old offices, not the old old offices, for those i need a letter writing, under an assumed name, about a little boy who works in a hotel and a lostlost woman, don’t give too much away of course, you’ll find your feet’ll hurt and the ticks’ll find a new noise so you’ll not hear them coming, and the tocks’ll just wander aimlessly in the dirt; no-one wants them if they’ve lost their only definition, and they’ve not the gumption to hone themselves another; they were attached to what they were, like a parasite feeding on a host already coughing up blood they forgot they weren’t healers; perhaps they could become healers, or at least perceived as such; if the coughing stopped, if the blood ceased to spurt, and the result of both were life, maybe they’d be mistaken for the cure, maybe the ticks’d put in a good word – they’d partnered well over the years – but the result of both was death; the tocks were blamed and the ticks’d fucked off to the bolivian republic of venezuela, discovering a particular love for nearby curaçao, its inherent healing properties, and the welcome shown by, as of the first of january 2009, its 141,766 strong population; the tocks need a breakdown not of quarterly returns; nor of the kind where the need to call one’s spouse at work arises, the i couldn’t stay in bed any longer though now i cannot raise me from the floor please listen to me cry about things i don’t understand so cannot explain and indelibly print an image on your psyche that will make you feel sick whenever its remembrance assails you, i feel sick, i must write this letter to the lostlost woman, i must avoid a breakdown, i shall not ask, nor say please, no-one should have these images

friday fiction – the story of felicity washington

the girl was so full of life before it was beaten and choked out of her; the parents she adored were not her biological parents; they were murdered by two seemingly upstanding members of the locale, though secretly part of the underground polyamorous and polysexual satanist community, they handed round homemade cakes to the congregation but all the while masturbated in their church, defiled the holy water with their seminars, he the proprietor of ‘satan’s sex store’ and all the while a member of a number of philanthropic boards; she the keeper of an indefineably gruesome whorehouse; beams as naked and splintered as its inhabitants; recruiting wife and mother, sister and daughter; a collector of lost souls extraordinaire, and the baker of the tastiest cherry pie this side of the tallahassee bridge; she adored her brothers, though neither of whom excelled at college, too busy burying bodies and setting traps around the homestead, but they always found time for a wholesome game of football; and of course her horse ‘persephone’, ridden daily to the giant oak on old slothrop’s farm, under which she now lies silent, and would but the single visitor’s weekly replenishment of fresh, vibrant flowers halt the once beautiful decomposing body; no matter what joy and vitality music gives you, we all just dance our way to a morgue drawer