Monday 28 February 2011

It was next to the corner shop, just opposite the prison.

Today, I walked past a small faded-grandeur Victorian hotel in an out-of-season south coast seaside town, and I genuinely thought to myself 'That would make a really good setting for a sitcom.' Well done me. Now I just need to get it written before some bastard steals the idea.

Saturday 26 February 2011

And everywhere that Cio-Cio went, the ship was sure to go.

'For goodness' sake, Madame Butterfly!' cried Madame Butterfly's mother 'That's the third time you've left the Titanic on the bus this month! Well I'm sorry, but from now on, I'm going to have to tie it to your wrist.'

Tuesday 22 February 2011

Whatever my faults...

...and they are many; I am absolutely not the sort of person who would ever wish a heart attack on anyone. 

Therefore I have nothing to say about this 'advert' for Cheltenham race course. Nothing at all. 

Nothing. At all. 

Sunday 13 February 2011

Foo Foo update; and the military career of Colonel Sir Nils Olav.

Oh, and do you know who else has a white miniature poodle named Foo Foo? I'll tell you who:

That's who. Which raises two equally exciting possibilities: that the Crown Prince of Thailand is a Muppet fan, and named his Air Chief Marshal after Miss Piggy's poodle; or, that he's never heard of the Muppets, but just happens to share a taste in poodle names with Miss Piggy. I can't decide which I want to be true more. 

Now, let's forget all this silliness, and study instead the distinguished career of a proper soldier - Colonel-in-Chief Sir Nils Olav of the Norwegian King's Guard. Olav joined the army in 1972 as a humble Lance Corporal, but gradually rose through the ranks until 2005, when he was appointed Colonel-in-Chief. In 2008, he was knighted by King Harald V. He has won several medals, and statues in his honour have been erected in both Oslo and Edinburgh, where he lives. 

Here he is inspecting his troops. 

And here he is receiving his knighthood:

I wonder who would win a battle between the Norwegian King's Guard and the Royal Thai Air Force? Or between their commanders?

Wednesday 9 February 2011

Hail to the Foo Foo.

Air Chief Marshal is a military rank in the air forces of several countries, including Great Britain. It is a four star rank, equivalent in seniority to a General in the Army, or an Admiral in the Navy. Thailand, apparently, has two currently serving Air Chief Marshals: Air Chief Marshal Itthaporn Subhawong, the 21st commander-in-chief of the Royal Thai Air Force, who looks like this:

...and Air Chief Marshal Foo Foo, who looks like this:

The second of the country's Air Chief Marshals - well, I say that; I don't actually know which of them has superiority over the other - is a miniature poodle belonging to the Crown Prince of Thailand. This is according to one of the Wikileaks cables, in this case from former US ambassador Ralph Boyce, who went on to describe his own leaving do: 

“Foo Foo was present at the event, dressed in formal evening attire complete with paw mitts, and at one point during the band’s second number, he jumped up on to the head table and began lapping from the guests’ water glasses, including my own. The Air Chief Marshal’s antics drew the full attention of the 600-plus audience members, and remains the talk of the town to this day.”

Foo Foo has, in fact, previously been in the news: in 2009, when a video leaked of a lavish birthday party the Prince threw for him, during which he required his wife, Her Royal Highness Princess Consort Srirasmi, to be topless throughout.

It is a crime in Thailand to make any criticism of the actions of the Royal Family. You can see why it would have to be.

Saturday 5 February 2011

Or possibly 'Linnaeus'?

It probably means I've been doing too many cryptic crosswords lately that when I saw this sign on an aeroplane...

...I automatically tried to solve it.

(I think it's 'Bandwidth'; but why 'class'...?)

Tuesday 1 February 2011

Trouser bugles.

I wonder if there will ever come a time when I am so blase about staying in hotels that I am no longer delighted by: i) the existence of the trouserpress; ii) the first and last panels in the series of pictures illustrating the use of the trouserpress:


...or iii) the fact that the German for trouserpress is apparently 'Hosenb├╝gler'?

I think not.