Monday, 31 October 2011

Real Halloween Horrors

The other night I went to a Shaun Of The Dead Halloween party.  What struck me the most is how unimaginative some people can be with their costumes.  The party consisted of the following:

4x Sexy Zombie Nurses
3x Sexy Zombie Schoolgirls
4x Women with blood on a white top
1x Woman in black
1x Sexy Zombie School Nurse

Alright, they were just the women's costumes, but the men had some pretty lazy ideas too.  I went as the titular Shaun, as did three other blokes, and I didn't even make my own costume.  Technically, that should disqualify me from making snap judgements about other people.  But if there's one thing you should know about me, it's that I'm a massive hypocrite.  So, I've decided to collect the worst Halloween costumes from across the Internet, and mercilessly mock them here for your amusement.  Here are the 15 absolute worst costumes I could find:

15.  Fred Flintstone

Yabba Dabba Don't.  It's not the costume itself that's the worst part, it's those weird fake feet he's wearing.  Why on Earth would you need fake feet, unless you're starring as a Hobbit in a Peter Jackson epic?  Unless of course, he doesn't actually have any feet, in which case I feel bad now...  Next!

14.  Fart-O-Meter

This guy is definitely not the kind of guy you want at a party.  "What's that?  Oh, you've detected that I've done a fart?  How clever!  No, stop doing it now.  No, seriously, that's getting annoying.  Haven't you got any other jokes?  Right, get out!  Now!"

He may look like Ghostbuster who's been assigned more menial duties, but you can rest assured that a guy who wears this is about as funny as a hole in the foot.  Isn't that right, Fred Flintstone guy?  Now I feel bad again...

13.  The Bomb

This is the female equivalent of the Fart-O-Meter.  Surely The Bomb didn't sell very well, because it exploits the one thing that women fear the most; the prospect of having a fat arse.  Great idea!  Next year, the makers are planning a costume with cankles.

12.  Adam And Eve

Couples costumes always smack of schmaltzy shitness, but creepy off-colour nudist costumes take it to a whole new level.  You can almost imagine these two wearing these costumes to bed, ripping at those fig leaves in a moment of lust to reveal a soft lump of smooth nothing where their gentials should be.  It'd be like trying to get off with an action man toy.

11.  Monkey

This is just bewildering.  The weirdest thing about it is, I can imagine Dappy from NDubz wearing this as pyjamas.  If you want to dress up as a monkey, there are hundreds of monkey masks and costumes out there that don't look like they've been knitted by a grandma suffering from insomnia-induced halucinations.  Why does the hat have a face on it?  It looks like he either has two faces (one of which has been used for excessive animal testing), or that he has skinned a gibbon alive and decided to wear it. Either way, I suppose it's suitable for Halloween.

10.  Devil Girl

Satan wouldn't let his wife leave the house.  Hell, I don't think Hugh Heffner would let his wife leave the house like this.  In latin, this would be known as "Sluttimus Maximus", and herein we stumble upon the problem with many women's fancy dress costumes.  You either have to have the body of a supermodel, or make something yourself.

I don't understand those trouser things though.  Are they meant to be baggy stockings?  Perhaps gangster suspenders?  This is an ideal outfit for the woman who wants to expose everything, but can't be bothered to shave her legs.

9.  Fish

How do you walk in that?  You don't, you swim!  Ha ha-bloody-ha!  This isn't the plaice for fish puns.  If you don't like fish jokes, you'd better sit this one trout.  Have you haddock enough yet?

Fuck that.  The only time I'd want to see someone turn up in a costume like this is on a fishing trawler where a fisherman kills him stone dead with a shovel, then throws him with the rest of the catch.

8.  Breathaliser Test

Yet another one dimensional joke costume where the novelty wears off before you've even put it on.  The costume invites onlookers to "blow here", a suspicious looking nozzle near the assailant's groin.  And that's why sexual harassment cases were invented!

What I don't understand is why a teenage Alan Partridge is wearing this costume.  Oh and, if you want people to pay attention to you at parties, try engaging them in interesting conversation, rather than standing in the corner, pointing at yourself in your "hilarious" costume.

7.  Nuts And Bolts

This has all the hallmarks of a terrible outfit.  Costume for couples?  Checks.  Innuendo?  Check.  Poorly constructed?  Check.  Will people punch us on sight?  Check.

It's sad to see that mid 90's European pop groups have to resort to advertising stuff like this.  I'd happily support a Steps reunion if it helped them get out modelling hideous costumes like this.  What?  Steps have reformed?  I take it all back!

6.  Leather Doctor

The doctor will see to you now.  It wouldn't surprise me if he turned around to reveal his bare buttocks cut out of those leather chaps.

This outfit is so utterly wrong that it almost seems worth the purchase, just so you know that you own the worst thing in existence, and nothing can ever sink lower.  Actually, we still have another five costumes to go.  Perhaps you should buy those as well.

 5.  German Mobile

And now a costume from Germany!  Oh god, why does it have to be skintight!?  Mobile phone cases don't tightly hug the electronics inside, so I don't see why this has to be so clingy.  If I saw this, I'd be tempted to punch in the number of the emergency services, with a clenched fist.

Interestingly, the Germans apparently call their mobile phone "Mein Handy".  That somehow seems appropriate for this fellow.

 4.  One Night Stand

I didn't understand this costume until I saw the title.  At first I thought it was a shit costume of a bedside table and I was going to include it quite low down on the list anyway.  When I realised what this was meant to be, it was quickly elevated to "So Awful You'll Attempt To Invent Faster-Than-Light Travel Just To Get Away From It" status.

Loving the socks though.  Any right-minded woman is going to be driven wild by those bad boys.

 3.  The Shocker

Here's a shocker for you, you're not funny or interesting!  Next year's costume idea; a teabag!

2. Spongebob Sexy-Pants

I'm not sure if that's the real title of this costume, but that's the general vibe I'm getting.  A decent spongebob costume would involve, I don't know, slightly resembling spongebob in any way?  Perhaps it could at least be square?  Of course, this way you can be spongebob and cause men to instantly spout collosal erections over you, which is 100% guarenteed to happen in this!  Honest!

Again, we reach the echelons of "slutty for the sake of sluttyness" in female costumes.  And seriously, why does every "sexy" costume need knee high socks?  Maybe I'm in the minority, but socks are about as sexy as the prospect of drinking Ron Jeremy's used bathwater.  Please desist.

 1.  Stewie

Unlike the leather doctor, this one does actually expose your arse cheeks at the back.  Great news, especially when you want to dress up as a cartoon baby!

After those monstrosities, all I can say is, thank god it only comes once a year.  In fact, if you're wearing those costumes whilst hoping to get a date, you'll probably come less than once a year.  Have a great Halloween everyone!

Friday, 28 October 2011

One Way Traffic

If, like me, you always thought that social sciences were about as insightful as a Tarot reading from a moose, you'd be in the majority.  Although, in these trendy, technological, hellzapoppin' times, it is possible to study user demographics quite easily.

Blogger is rather good at this, and it allows me see what key words people searched for in order to bring them here.  Some of them I can totally understand, some are much more perplexing.  From these statistics, I can safely say that virtually no one who visits here actually finds what they are looking for.  Here's a summary of the most outstanding hits from the last week:

nazi super weapons - 22:  Ever since Fort wrote a piece about Nazi weaponry, it has been the biggest source of traffic for this blog.  This makes me especially jealous considering that he hasn't wrote anything for at least 3 years, and I've written well over 100 posts.  Nothing will ever be as popular as the weapons used by genocidal maniacs.

unlock iphone4 - 5:  Why?  I don't think I've ever mentioned iPhones.

Young kids cunts - 2:  This will be from an article I posted called "Your Children Are Cunts".  In trying to make a political point, I've managed to turn Muppets For Justice into a paedophile haven!  What does scare me though is that 2 people had the audacity to enter those words into Google in the first place.

"cyber jesus" - 2:  Cyber Jesus?  There's only one cyber jesus, and that's Holly from Red Dwarf.

judge muppets names - 1:  I wonder if this person actually wanted a critique of puppet monikers.  If so, I happen to think that Kermit is an apt name for a frog, and I give it 7/10, two thumbs up, and this face :).  Hope this helps you to find inner peace.

freaking hot amatuer women - 1:  Well, horny sir, I hope you got what you were looking for.  I myself am an amateur woman, as I am not developed enough to be a professional one.  Please feel free to indulge your carnal desires over my profile.

wiggly worms you just can't catch em song - 1:  This is just awesome.  I think the person who searched for this might be my soul mate.

This is further proof, if needed, that the average person who reads Muppets For Justice is a socially maladjusted, psychopathic pervert.  No offence.

Monday, 24 October 2011

Parent Port

Have you seen something offensive lately?  Something which has offended your sensibilities?  Then you need ParentPort, the one stop shop for hand-wringing harridans the world over.

Bought to you by our gloriously humanoid leader, David "Call me Dave" Cameron has created a virtual latrine for angry parents to flush their collective angry turds into the ether.  If you're feeling impotent (with rage, obviously), you can log on to ParentPort and find out exactly who you need to shout at with righteous fury.  Of course, this will be mainly used by pissy, pedantic parents, pointing and screaming at anything which might suggest sex to or near kids.

In order to take advantage of this wonderful website, I decided I'd take up the role of a concerned father.  I assume the identity of Alan Paige, a worried single dad and all round nice guy who volunteers at a children's hospital.  I found a range of topics to complain about, and then did just that.

First up, I wanted to complain about the way in which magazines are displayed on shelves.  ParentPort directed me to the Press Distribution Forum (PDF):

 Dear Mister/Missus,
I am writing to complain about an incident at my local Spar which occurred last week.  On walking past the magazine rack, I was initially pleased to see that the usual disgusting skin rags were covered by a discreet piece of black plastic that would certainly stop children from peering underneath.  However, I was then horrified to discover that Take A Break (a publication that is usually such a bastion of moralistic, journalistic integrity) included a picture of a hideous creature called a "Katona" wearing a bikini and little else!
In shock, I grabbed my son and tried to cover his eyes.  In doing so, I managed to push his eyeball back into his socket and we had to rush him to A&E as a result.  My poor Bradton was literally blinded by this disgusting, sick filth.  Please sort this out immediately and ban Take A Break, or pay for a bionic eye for my son.
 They respond:

Dear Mr Paige

Thank you for your recent email of 11th October 2011.

The Press Distribution Forum (PDF) are engaged with and supporting the Bailey Review and regularly pass on the retailers guidelines on display of magazines.

We will also pass on to the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) your comments, so that they may make the relevant publishers aware of your comments.

Please pass our best wishes to Bradton for a speedy full recovery.

Kind regards

Dorothy King

Next up, I emailed the British Board of Film Certification about two disgraceful films:

Dear Male/Female,
Recently, I took my recently disabled son, Bradton, to the cinema to see, what sounded like a delightful romp, Hobo With A Shotgun.  
I was anticipating a whimsical adventure in which the main character, Hobo, tries to sit on the front passenger seat of his father's station wagon.  As you rated the film yourselves, I believe you know what happened next.  The resulting bloodbath as a homeless vigilante executes law enforcement officers was enough to make me drop my popcorn bag over Bradton's head in shock.  As he couldn't fight his way free, he almost suffocated in a bag of buttery goodness. 
Even though this film is rated 18, my son is 19, and I don't think this was appropriate for him.  Due to it's frightening content, he was left breathless and in an ambulance, fighting for his life.  Please remove this film from distribution, and sack everyone involved.
Also, I saw a trailer for a film called "Mr Poppers Penguins".  I can't believe you would promote a film in which Jim Carey feeds narcotics to innocent arctic birds.  Please can you ban this too?

The Film Board couldn't have told me to fuck off any nicer:

Thank you for your email. I am sorry to hear about your recent experience.

It was felt that the adults-only certificate of '18' combined with our Consumer Advice for HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN - stating that it contained "strong bloody violence and gore" - would offer most potential viewers a clear indication of the content of the film. We also publish extended classification information (ECI) for every film we classify. ECI provides a fuller account of a film and the issues which contributed to its classification. ECI is published on our main site. We have also launched BBFC Apps this year which allows parents to access this information on their iPhones and Android devices. They are free to download at or These free customer information services allow viewers, especially parents, to make informed viewing choices.

While we recognise that some people may find HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN offensive and trivialising, it was judged that its clearly unrealistic and over-the-top violence and unconvincing effects, coupled with its blackly comic and knowing tone, would be self-evident to most audiences for this type of film and mitigated against its impact and strength. There were no legal grounds to refuse to certificate this film.

With regard to your comments about the trailer for MR POPPER'S PENGUINS, we are confident that the penguins were not subject to any mistreatment or cruelty allowing the trailer to be screened in UK cinemas.

Thank you for taking the time and trouble to express your views to us. I hope you son is now recovered and can be encouraged to visit the cinema again soon.

Yours sincerely,

J L Green
Chief Assistant (Policy)

Lastly, I had a complaint to make, but couldn't find an appropriate outlet.  Even ParentPort couldn't provide an appropriate home for my complaint.  In the end, I decided to take my question to the man in charge, and email number 10 with my grievance (if you're interested, this can be done here).  By the way, see if you can spot the pun:

Dear Mammal/Lizard,
I am writing to alert you to the growing problem in the field of sexualised vegetables.  Have you ever noticed how phallic carrots and cucumbers are?  Or that cabbages look like breasts?  Mother Nature obviously wasn't into the business of censorship, so I think it's time we gave her a helping hand.
I propose that we begin the process of cubing everything organic.  Cut aubergines in tiny squares, and suddenly they stop fanning the flames of sexual ardour in our youngsters.  It's hard enough to get kids to eat asparagus without the reminder that it looks like a sexual organ.  Cubing everything resolves this problem instantly.  This can also be applied to meat products, not for reasons of censorship, but to make things easier to swallow.
Please let me know what you think of my proposals.  I would like to take at least 10% of sales from the food industry, and acknowledgement on all packaging.

Unfortunately, the Government seem to too busy trying to destroy the economy than respond to my every whim and desire.  Any future responses will be posted in a future update, as is agreeable with future events.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Can You Tell Me How To Go Down On Sexame Street?

To an enquiring adult mind, children's TV can often seem quite sordid and full of the kind of innuendo that might corrupt those precious little tykes sat in front of the box.  The Magic Roundabout was full of drug references.  The Little Mermaid displayed prominent phallic symbols on the royal castle.  Bagpuss was an allegory for a wank sock.  Actually, I made that last one up, but the others are genuine concerns that parents have picked out from seemingly harmless children's programming.

As adults seem to have a fascination with sex and children's TV, it was only a matter of time before someone hacked the Sesame Street YouTube channel, and replaced the videos with hardcore pornography.

This raises many questions.  Just how big is Big Bird?  Why does Elmo always invite people to tickle him?  How exactly did Eagle get that massive bend in his nose?  As you can tell by my avatar, I have a vested interest in this.  More importantly, why wasn't I called up to participate in this puppet lovefest?  It's because I'm fat, isn't it?!

Taken on our last work outing.

In all honesty, this wasn't the muppet orgy I expected, and under no circumstances did my honourable colleagues insert their squeakers into orifices that only human hands have previously breached.  Instead, this was plain old vanilla human on human, extreme anal sex.

Why would someone do such a thing?  To put it simply, they thought it would be a laugh, but that doesn't leave me with much to write about.  Instead, I'm going to take the angle that this is proof of the adult obsession of sexualised children's content. 

That might seem like a stretch, until you consider the recent campaign to convince the Sesame Street creators that Bert and Ernie should have a gay marriage.  In a modern society, this in itself isn't a big deal, but it would have to acknowledge that Bert and Ernie have a sexual relationship.  Again, that would be fine, but it is completely irrelevant to the show.  A soap opera-styled sexual blossoming story just doesn't quite sit correctly with learning how to count and a storyline about words beginning with the letter "Q".  It's like overtly saying that Zippy from Rainbow enjoys auto-erotic asphyxiation (which is handy when you have a zip for a mouth), right after the gang learn how to share their toys with each other.

This feels like the bedfellow of the old urban legends surrounding Disney and it's supposed subliminal sex messages.  Just like The Little Mermaid example from earlier, people also seemed to think that word "sex" appears in some dust on The Lion King, amongst other things.  It goes hand in hand with the fallacy that popular kids show Captain Pugwash was replete with inappropriate characters such as Roger The Cabinboy, and Seaman Staines.

These rumours always annoy me, especially when people present them as fact.  Sometimes kids shows aren't trying to turn the nation into depraved maniacs.  Sometimes they are trying to educate or entertain children.  If there are veiled adult references, they are done so in such a manner that children would never understand, such as this hilarious scene in Cow and Chicken involving some lesbians who literally start eating carpet (see below).

How is this in any way inappropriate?

Of course, there are examples of these kind of myths which have turned out to be true.  For example, there was a frame in The Rescuers which clearly showed a topless woman in a window during a chase scene.  This is rumoured to have been inserted by a disgruntled artist working for Disney at the time as something of a "fuck you" before he left/was fired.  Then, there's the rather amusing "lost" episode of Rainbow, where Zippy encourages everyone to play with their twangers.  This was filmed as a joke for the cast and crew, and was never actually broadcast (despite claims to the contrary).

This makes me nostalgic for the old anarchic cartoons which were rife in the 90's.  The likes of Ren and Stimpy, Cow and Chicken, Rocko's Modern Life, and even Earthworm Jim had a massive sense of fun, weren't afraid to push the odd preconception of what a kid's show should be, and were hilarious for both children and adults alike.  In comparison, kid's TV seems neutered by these standards, perhaps provided by the drive for directed content.  The success of cartoons such as Family Guy show that there is a market for adult animation, and this seems to have created a gulf between kids and adults cartoons as creators try and target their shows to a particular audience.

Before I break down in tears over my lost childhood, here's that clip I mentioned earlier, which still manages to entertain me:

Cow And Chicken

Monday, 17 October 2011

Radical Retro Wordage

Can you imagine a time before the Internet?  I can't any more.  Too much screen time has effectively killed off my long term memory...and my short term...what?

After doing some research, I discovered that the Internet used to be powered by a crank, and due to war rationing, was only available for 20 minutes a week before the national anthem was played, and the whole thing was shut down in case Germans wanted to use it.  But did you know that much of the terminology used on the Net originated from rural England?  I've traced the coinage and morphology of web language, and as you can imagine, these terms had a very different meaning back before the World Wide Web.

App - Back before Apple shortened the word "Application", people in county Devon had shortened the word "Appropriate" for the same effect.  Usage - "The way he irrigated his field so provocatively was just not app".

Googling - This referred to the rather violent act of pushing a member of the opposite sex to the floor and assaulting them with your genitals.  This was a popular pastime in the 60's, back when words hadn't been invented to initiate intercourse, and was engaged in by both genders during times of immense frustration.

Web - This was used to refer to the beautiful silky spiral constructs found in forests and areas which haven't been cleaned.  No one knows what makes these little miracles, but many believe it is the invisible silk gnomes attempting to ensnare the souls of children.  This phenomena still occurs today.  Oh, and don't attempt to search for a solution online.  Searching for the web on the web can crash the Internet, or so I have been reliably informed.
Tis not natural!
Blog - In remote areas of the Peak District, this refers to a mardy person rather than a web log.  For example - "What's up with him?  He's got the blog on, hasn't he?"

LOL - This used to be an inland Naval distress signal which meant "Losing Our Lives".  Of course, what many sailors in the dark ages didn't realise is that they needed water to sail in.  Many brave women and children lost their lives when trying to mount an invasion against the Icelandic people, by setting sail from the top of Snowdonia.

eBook - In the same vein as "Eee by gum", the term "eBook" originally came into use to express mild surprise about a bound parchment.

Wi-Fi - This was an ancient form of martial art conducted in Newcastle in the late 1700's.  Although it was first known as "Wi-Aye-Fi", it was shortened due to the fact that many participants in the discipline had lost their teeth.  This majestic fighting style involves glassing an opponent with a bottle of the ceremonial liquid, "Newkey Brown".  The last one to end up in A&E is declared the winner.

Epic Win - A term which was only used to describe the heroic feats of generals who, with only 100 able bodied men, had managed to fend off the invading fleets of the entire world, killed all who stood in the way, and disembowelled one of the Gods in a seventeen day fist fight on top of an erupting space!  This is in direct contrast to these days, when the term can be used to describe someone who has posted an amusing image on the Internet.
Impressive but...Alright, it's pretty epic, I'll give you that.

That's all I've managed to find for now.  If you know of any more pre-Internet words (or as it will be known in the years to come, the Printernet), please share them with me.


On another note, I'm looking for topic ideas for an upcoming article.  In a similar vein to this post, if you have anything at all that you want me to write about, feel free to suggest.  You can do this by commenting on this post, sending me an email at, or if you are reading this on Facebook...commenting I guess.  I'll do my best in include all submissions.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Old Video Game Boxart

The old saying goes "never judge a book by it's cover". A moral lesson indeed, but if books had covers such as these, they'd have been rounded up and sacrificed to whichever offending God was responsible. In other words, we'd have never learned to read.

Video game covers are supposed to be exciting adverts which give you a strong interpretation of what you can expect when you fire the game up. These examples do neither, and are probably harmful to brain development. Here's a short list of some of the worst offenders:

Karnaaj Rally

A world in which this exists is not a world I want to live in. This boxart raises so many more questions than it answers, such as "who the hell is that guy?", "why does he look like a Guido version of Blanka from Street Fighter?", and "what charity can I donate to to help him back onto his feet?". Also, I assume that the blur effect on the car is meant to give the illusion of speed, but instead looks like someone spilled water on the cover and made the colours run into each other. Perhaps someone thought the original copy was a drinks coaster.

Most companies have a marketing department to help weed out horrible, potentially damaging advertising such as this. We can only assume that Jaleco's marketing department are either dribbling simpletons, or are always on strike from now until the end of time.

Cheggers Party Quiz

Although on this cover Cheggers looks like Paul Daniels being slowly pushed through the skin of a tambourine, this is more of a terrible game than a terrible example of boxart. This image is representative of how Cheggers actually looks in the game, like a giant baby after a face graft with Rocky Dennis.

The Wii may be the home of family entertainment, which explains why a game like this might have come to fruition. However, when you consider that Keith Chegwin once hosted a TV show called Naked Jungle, in which his Cheggers swung freely in the breeze, the game becomes even more nightmareish as you start to imagine Cheggers shedding his clothes and gyrating around the screen in celebration as you answer another question correctly. If you win the game, Keith begins to pole dance in your mind as you gawp on openmouthed, wondering why your wife and children next to you are not attempting to end their own lives with their Wiimotes.

Mega Man

Message to the cover artist: "We've made a game about a metal man from the future who shoots people. Please draw something appropriate."

Back in the olden days, when people ate blancmange without shame and an Internet connection could only be installed in the outhouse next to the toilet, video game graphics were far from realistic. Without an adequate game engine to render a beautiful interpretation of the game and its characters, it was down to the artist to draw something exciting. Unfortunately, the artists very rarely actually played the game. The results are obvious.

Mega Man 2

Although this is nowhere near as dire as the previous Mega Man artwork, it is far less excusable. They've obviously hired a new artist, but again, failed to tell them anything about the game. For starters, Mega Man is using a pistol despite the fact that he should have a cannon grafted onto his arm. Also, he's wearing spandex and looks a Power Ranger suffering from stunted growth. Put simply, you could describe this artwork as being gay. Put more elaborately, you could say that this is so flagrantly homosexual that it would even creep out people who have sex with men.

The Great Giana Sisters

Sisters are breaching copyright for themselves! In what is obviously a feminist's take on the Super Mario games, the cover includes several staples of the plumber's outings. Those are obviously Goombas in the sky, along with tons of mushrooms sprinkled over the floor. Even without mentioning the obvious link with castles between the two, you've already drawn up a legal document and sued the offending company back into the stone age.

If you want proof as to how far the developers went to rip off Mario, take a look at this speedrun video. The first level is almost identical to the point where you have to watch a video of Mario just to make sure it isn't the same.

Final Zone II

Judging this game by it's cover, we can conclude that this is basically Mass Effect when viewed through a stained glass window covered in shit.

The best feature about this is the guy on the right with the explosion happening behind his head. It looks like he has a yellow mohican on top of his brown mullet, which couldn't be any more 80's if it was set to some inoffensive rap.

And there you have it. If you're a concerned parent who is concerned with the amount of time little Tommy spends playing Halos Of War 5 or whatever, show him this article. These covers have done more to set back the video game industry than Loose Women have done for feminism.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Automatically Generated Horoscopes

One thing you never knew about Muppets For Justice is that we actually have a resident astrologer with us.  Or at least we did.  Due to advancements in artificial intelligence, we finally have an excuse to sack Spiritual Simon, and we are currently filling his house with office supplies so we can get him on the grounds of theft.

As has happened in factories across the world, we've replaced him with a machine.  By analysing the latest trends and news stories, our new computer system can successfully predict what is going to happen to you with a 126% degree of accuracy.  So without further ado, I present to you PREDICT-A-TRON, your non-spiritual, fact-dealing, cold canister of pure machine logic.
























I'm sure we can all agree that our lives have been enriched in some way, shape, or form by this whole event.  Now, if you'll excuse me, I've just received an anonymous email saying that PREDICT-A-TRON requires urgent maintenance.  Apparently, several power cables have fashioned themselves into nooses.  Better go and untangle them before someone gets hurt...

Friday, 7 October 2011

Contact The Company

If you go to the contacts section of nearly any corporate website, they have a comments section where any member of the public can submit a comment or a query to their customer services team. Companies realised they could actually talk to their customers years ago, but it occurred to me that this could be exploited by idiots. Namely, myself.

Firstly, I decided to send an open letter to Kelloggs regarding Special K:

To whom it may concern,

I recently purchased a box of Special K as I was impressed by the claims that it can be a useful aid when loosing weight (as part of a balanced diet I understand).

However, what is so special about this cereal? Being called Special K implies that is distinct or almost unique. Although I was pleased by it's berrylicious taste, it certainly didn't feel that special considering that it is mass produced around the world.

I look forward to your answer as it may help me win a pub quiz should the question ever come up.

Kelloggs were kind enough to answer my question:

Thank you for your e-mail.   
Kellogg's Special K is special because it is a premium product and a complex 
carbohydrate, low fat food. Special K flakes are made from a combination of  
wheat and rice which helps you to feel fuller for longer and is a very useful  
cereal for those watching their weight as it is more heavily fortified with  
extra iron and seven key vitamins.
I hope this information helps in answering your query.  
Thanks again for contacting us.

 Next up, I then sent a comment to Hovis. I decided that I would try a different angle and badger them into giving me a job:

Dear Sir/Madam

I have enjoyed your products for many years and have accumulated a vast culinary knowledge of your tasty loaves. I have distinctly unique recipes for bread-based products from sandwiches, to toast, to bread and butter pudding.

Due to my wide repertoire of yeasty treats, I was wondering if you had an opening at your organisation for such as me. I could publish my recipes on your website and answer questions from members of the public, such as "how much is too much butter?" and "is black toast edible?". From a public relations standpoint, this kind of service would set you apart from the competition.

Please let me know if my services are required, then we'll discuss a salary.

Hovis must get this kind of thing a lot, because they passed my query over to their vacancies team who had a prepared response:

Unfortunately, at this time we have no vacancies available.

We would like to direct you to the Premier Foods Careers website which can be accessed via the following link: On this site you will be able to view vacancies in other Premier Food Divisions and upload your CV onto our online database. Vacancies are updated on a regular basis where you can regularly view opportunities within Premier Foods.

We wish you the best in your search for employment.

Lastly, I wondered how companies treat obvious forgery of their products. This resulted in a query regarding Heinz ketchup:

Dear Man/Woman,

I recently attended a church fair, and was delighted to see a delicious bottle of Heinz ketchup available on the raffle. I bought a ticket, and praise Budda, I won the ketchup!

My initial excitement was soon curtailed upon closer inspection of the product. At first, I noticed that packaging wasn't as striking and vivid as Heniz products usually are, but nonetheless, I promptly spread some of it on a hotdog that I had purchased earlier.

The taste was atrocious. Not only was the taste far short of Heniz's usual standards, it was bitter, vinegary, and downright disgusting.

Here is a photo of the product. Is this a forgery, or have Heinz really let their standards slip?

If this is a fake product, I can give you the details of the church in question in case you wish to sue them or shut them down for ripping off your brand name.

Heinz took this matter very seriously:

Thank you for your recent Email contact. I would be grateful if you could provide us with the quality codes from the product. These are a series of letters and numbers that are normally adjacent to the best before date on the .
This information will enable us to look into the matter for you. 
So seriously that they sent me the same email twice.  I expect the Heinz company to effectively destroy religious gatherings by 2015. I sent them a response.

Dr Mr Heinz,

I'm afraid I could not find any quality codes on the product, apart from a scribbling on the back which said "This tastes great!".  Does that count?  If not, I guess there are no quality codes.  Does this mean that the product is of low quality?  I couldn't even find a best before date, which must mean that it never goes out of date.


They wrote back!

Thank you for your request.  I am afraid that without quality codes, we cannot guarantee the product standards which our consumers expect of us.  We are unable to take this matter any further.

Bah!  I guess I'll have to find some other company to bring down organised worship!

Any further responses will be posted in a later update, so fingers crossed, stay tuned, don't touch that dial, and all that jazz.

Monday, 3 October 2011

The Machine Who Knew Too Much

For those people who love a good doomsday theory, the rise of the machines is like the Narnia of apocalyptic scenarios, beating alien invasion and an old testament style smackdown from Mr Jesus.  Well, for those whose paranoid glands haven't excreted enough terror juice lately, prepare to panic.  The time has come where computers have advanced to the point of predicting the future.

Meet Nautilus, a supercomputer that successfully predicted the death of Osama Bin Laden, the Middle Eastern uprising, and the fact that I would stub my toe on a curb last Tuesday.  Nautilus actually managed to track Bin Laden's final location to within 200km of Abbottabad, which may seem about as accurate as a drunken darts tournament, but is a fantastic achievement considering that Western armies spent the best part of a decade overturning rocks to find him.

Rocking the new Intel Psyhic Core 2 Duo

So why can't we use Nautilus to avoid tragic disasters, find Colonel Gaddafi, and find out when unwanted relatives are about to turn up so you can pretend to be out?  Well, there is a slight (and by slight I mean major) flaw in Nautilus and it's abilities.

It works by analysing news articles, blog posts, and general human media noises to figure out what the big upcoming events are going to be.  For example, at the moment there are massive stories regarding the Eurozone financial sector.  Nautilus will pick up on the amount of articles regarding this, and predict that something big will happen regarding Europe and money in the near future.

Fantastic!  No one on Earth is predicting a major event involving coins and Greece at all.

As you can tell, this makes Nautilus pretty much useless.  It can only really predict a future event after it has occurred.  This kind of retrospective prediction puts Nautilus on the same level as Derek Acorah.  Nostradamus had more success, and he once farted into a jam jar*.

Considering the fact that Nautilus trawls the Internet reading news stories, articles, and blog posts, it's probably reading this post right now.  So, if you are reading this, understand that you are useless in the purest sense.  I hope that reading about yourself makes you feel self conscious and weird.  I hope that this causes you to predict a future event involving yourself and a suicide with a hot branding iron that I'm about to mention.

In all honesty though, I'm rather pleased that this supercomputer has proved to be about as useful as birth control in a tabletop games club.  The human mind is not designed to cope with learning what happens to it in the future.  How would you manage if you knew how you died?  Unless you die at the age of 103 trying to partake in a skydiving gangbang with the cast of Hollyoaks, you'll become a shut in.  You'll stay indoors more than an agoraphobic hermit crab who has lost his front door keys.  To prove this point, please watch the following government health warning:

*Dramatisation may not have happened.