It used to be a car thief carried a brick, a crowbar or a coat hanger to work. Nowadays car thieves never go to work without electronic gizmos and gadgets. The onus is now on any self-respecting car thief to be part hacker! A Swiss-made security device called a Megamos Crypto system…using it is said, a relatively simple encryption…has sold over 100 million radio frequency identification chips designed to verify the identity of the ignition key. Twenty-six car manufacturers have bought them, including Audi Fiat, Honda, Volvo, Volkswagen, Bentley, Ferrari, Porsche and Maserati. Unfortunately, it is claimed a security ‘loophole’ exists in the Megamos chip, allowing thieves to electronically ‘hotwire’ immobilisers within 30-minutes by discovering the vehicle’s security code within the key fob’s transponder. Car thieves, or ‘scammers’ as they prefer to be known, electronically eavesdrop on the key fob signal, and then by using a commercially available computer programme, analyse it and then emulate it. The immobiliser then decodes the signal and starts the engine.
London appears to be the current hotbed for electronically hotwiring vehicles, where 4 out of 10 car scammers feature electronic hacking methods. Before offering it for sale, one would have thought the Swiss company that developed the Megamos Crypto system would have paid 10 hackers to attempt ‘crack’ its encryption system, with whoever succeeded within say 20/30 minutes, getting a cash bonus! Then again, perhaps the developers already knew of the security loophole? What is the point of spending 50-grand on a car only to secure it with a steering wheel brace? The Swiss should stick to what they do best; Watches, chocolates, cuckoo clocks and hiding other people’s money!
My friend Brenda has a sick, giant poodle called Bronwyn. She suffers from Inflammatory Bowel Disease. In order to eliminate all types of foods she may have an allergy towards, Brenda must attempt to feed ‘Bron’ food she has never tried before. Next up? Fresh venison, at £6:00 a pound, or £65:00 a week! In order to get the price down, Brenda must buy in bulk. Knowing that I occasionally enjoyed a venison steak, she offered me one. Naturally I refused. “Sorry Brenda,” I said. “As much as I like venison, I’m not about to start eating dog food!”
Despite over 500,000 British deer being culled each year, out of a total population of 1,5 million deer, why is it British supermarkets import 1,300 tonnes of farmed, ‘substandard’ tasting New Zealand deer each year? Is it the price? If it is ‘price’, how can it be possible to import from thousands of miles away at a lower cost than providing British shoppers British deer? Is a cartel at work fixing the price? It is well-known that meat of any free-range animal will generally have a stronger and more satisfying flavour. Apparently, here in the UK there are over 74,000 collisions each year between free-running deer and vehicles, causing hundreds of injuries and 20 deaths. It has even been suggested deer culling should be increased to 50% of the UK deer population! Don’t blame the deer for accidental collisions! It is us who keep shrinking their natural habitats.
Whereas I can offer nothing but ‘positive’ feedback for the muscular, female genitalia, I do not like the name…vagina! I always confuse it with ‘Regina’ and ‘Virginia’. As I’m sure you all know, the term vagina is from the Latin word vaginae, meaning ‘sheath’ or ‘scabbard’. Yes well, enough said about that! They’ll be no jokes here about ‘velieris salami’ if you please! The actual reproductive organ might sit comfortably on my tongue, but ‘vagina’ definitely does not! This might go some way to explain why I’m so often embarrassed when saying it!? And no, before you ask, I don’t have too much time on my hands! Slang alternatives might be in common use, but most of them tend to denigrate the generously proportioned, complex, concave structure. I’ve scratched my
brian…brain long and hard, but have yet to come up with a suitable replacement name for vagina. Lest you forget, renaming ceremonies are not without precedent! If you can think of anything suitable, do drop me a line! One final thought. Might this post be considered a vagina…analogue?
Concerns have been raised over blood samples provided by several past winners of the London Marathon. Had they taken performance-enhancing drugs? Organisers of the world-famous event have suggested, the only way to ensure all runners compete on a ‘level playing field’, is to hand out cocaine-concealing bananas. Now you might think this is an extraordinary solution to a problem, however, so many cocaine-concealing banana crates have been misdelivered to UK supermarkets, instead of to the intended ‘end-user’, rather than leave the ‘high-performance’ potassium content fruit to rot in a police warehouse, many believe it would be better to re-cycle it. Should the mainly, Colombian Matching Powder be distributed to all future marathon runners, it is likely the eventual winning time will be under one hour!
The f**k he does! Hey man, talk to the hand because the face ain’t listening! I’m still in my prime, and I’m going to stay in the ‘prime zone’! I’ve seen too many relatives and friends age prematurely and kick the bucket. Okay, I’ve got a bit of dry skin, but that’s the extent of my degeneration! I have no intention of suffering slack skin and under-performing organs! No way am I going to put myself in the hands of strangers, however well-intentioned they may be. If I must throw vitamins down my throat and insert ‘XXL’ mineral suppositories my rear end, then so be it! Remember now, as long as one remains in good physical and mental health, age is just a number, and mine ain’t up! It is said, ‘Good health is money in the bank’. Naturally it is with some regret I must acknowledge so many of the banks went bust! Nevertheless, here I am, and here I’ll stay!!
North Korea has threatened to blow up South Korea’s loudspeakers after they began spouting ‘psychological warfare’ over the border between the two countries that are technically still at war. A peace treaty was never signed and a cease-fire agreement expired years ago. Seoul restarted the propaganda broadcasts for the first time in 11-years after accusing North Korea of planting landmines in the Demilitarized Zone instead of the promised azaleas and white ‘peace’ poppies. It really would be a shame to destroy South Korea’s Q Acoustics 2050i speakers. I only wish I could afford them!
Rather than spouting proper or improper ganda, why don’t the South Koreans play John Lennon’s ‘Give Peace A Chance’ through their loudspeakers I can’t afford, and then Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s ‘Relax‘? After all, if anything’s designed to give peace a chance, it is masturbation on a grand scale! Should pro-war factions put down their ‘mutton daggers’ long enough to pick up their rifles, then the Q Acoustics 2050i speakers should play Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s ‘Two Tribes’ (Go To War), followed by the pop-jazz instrumental ‘Yakety Sax’, the de facto theme music to the late, great, Benny Hill’s comedy TV show. Either way, get it on, or get it over with! The rest of the human race shouldn’t have to wait with bated breath for another 60-years for real peace or war to break out, should it?
On the second day of high-level talks between North and South Korea, known as the ‘For fuck sake take down your loudspeaker talks’, North Korea launched 50 of its submarines, the 60-year old Whiskey-class non-nuclear boats, and the 50-year-old Romeo-class non nuclear boats. Let us hope no torpedoes or missiles are fired from these old, Soviet-era rust buckets, otherwise hundreds of North Korean submariners will be looking to the South Korean Navy to save them from watery graves!
The 1880’s were marked by the ‘Scramble for Africa’ particularly in Ethiopia, and today it is happening all over again! Encouraged by Western alliances, the region of South Sudan sought independence from the rest of Sudan in 2011 and has been fighting a 20-month-long civil war. Everyone who is anyone is sticking their noses in Africa’s trough, the richest continent on earth. The world’s youngest nation, the Republic of South Sudan is rich in natural resources; Iron ore, copper, chromium ore, zinc, tungsten, silver, gold, diamonds and has the third-largest oil reserves in sub-Saharan Africa. I wonder what will happen when all of Earth’s natural resources have been plundered? I won’t be around in 150-years but perhaps my descendants will be!
As with parsley used as decoration on a plate which no one eats, there really is no place in society for skimmed milk. I challenge any café worker to froth it up to be used in a cappuccino or latte! If you’re lactose intolerant, well you may as well drink a glass of water! Recently my neighbour made me a coffee and apologised for only having skimmed milk. I said I’ll take it black, which is just the same as adding skimmed milk! If skimmed milk had never been invented, but someone appeared on Dragon’s Den, claiming he or she had invented the stuff, the dragons will undoubtedly have said, “Why bother?” Containing only 0.5% fat of whole milk, the vitamins ‘A’ and ‘D’ that are lost from milk when the fat is removed, are artificially added to skimmed milk. The calcium, potassium and casein protein can always be obtained from several other sources. As far as using the revolting stuff a dietary aid is concerned, semi-skimmed milk contains 1.7% fat, so not that much more than the fat content in skimmed milk. The miniscule difference in fat content is hardly likely to make significant inroads into the removal of your belly fat, now is it? Skimmed milk, why bother!
Lately seagulls across Britain have been subjected to negative press due to the birds anti-social behaviour! These a-political creatures have been recorded dive-bombing children for their ice-cream, attacking pets on beaches, pecking at naturists wobbly bits and crapping on the heads of Zimmer-frame users, acts which are definitely worthy of the issue of community ASBOs. So how are coastal towns preparing to deal with the seagull menace? Believe it or not, Graham Roberts, borough councillor for Whitehaven, Cumbria, is looking into the cost-effectiveness of deploying drones to see-off the great menace! “If seagulls refuse to act responsibly, we may have no choice but to engage them in aerial combat. We may even arm the drones with machineguns!” Err, excuse me, but wouldn’t it be simpler, and cheaper to train cuckoos to see off the menace? What’s that old adage? Ah yes…‘Set a thief to catch a thief!’
That’s right folks, the 27th of August is indeed National Burger Day, so eat heartily, for tomorrow is National Constipation Day! I feel sorry for vegetarians, because when they can’t sleep, they can’t count sheep!
I don’t suppose many people outside the UK have heard of the long-standing, left-wing Labour Member of Parliament, Jeremy Corbyn, who at the moment is the front-runner to be elected as the new Labour Party leader. Political commentators are saying, even if he is elected Labour leader, there is no chance of the Labour Party ever winning a general election with Mr Corbyn at the helm. Well, if history has taught us anything, it is this, never say never, because stranger things have happened!
Mr Corbyn has publicly stated, should he ever become Premier, he would among other things, renationalise the railways, forcing taxpayers to pay out huge sums in compensation to the private companies who presently run the railways. In line with his left-wing ideologies the gentleman holds so dear, Mr Corbyn would probably dump our nuclear deterrent, shrink the budgets for the Armed Services even further, pump huge sums into an already failing National Health Service, allow unfettered access to the UK by economic migrants, increase foreign aid, cap rents, abolish ‘zero-hour’ contracts, increase public spending generally, and increase taxes. As if we Brits aren’t already heavily in debt, having frightened off multi-nationals from having their headquarters here, Mr Corbyn will certainly borrow money. How much? At least a trillion pounds! Britain would become bankrupt, and frankly, I don’t want to be around to say ‘I told you so!’ Mr Corbyn, like so many other left-wing national leaders of the past, have never learned, you cannot provide for everyone. People must learn to fend for themselves, and those who can’t will always do without! Absolutely it is unfair, but that’s life! Market forces drive Western economies, and old-fashioned Socialist ideologies have no place in the modern world!
St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome seen from the roof of Castel Sant’Angelo. Location: Rome Taken: September 2004 Source: Own photo Photographer: Wolfgang Stuck (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Despite the Catholic Church suffering the backlash from scandals that involved sex, drugs, rock n’ roll, fraud, money-laundering, dwarf throwing and the VatiLeaks saga, Pope Francis is quickly becoming the most popular Pontiff in history. Could it be down to the Pope’s natural charm, phoning up his followers for a chat, his invaluable tweets, or his willingness to get up close & personal with fellow Catholics, which includes his willingness to be dragged into a stranger’s ‘selfie’? After years of some well deserved negative press, the Catholic Church is currently basking in the ‘Francis Effect’ which has been credited with a 20 per cent rise in congregations in Britain, and similar boosts around the world.
The man’s name is not Monsignor Greg Burke but plain Greg Burke, 53, a native of St Louis, Missouri, the Vatican’s publicity shy PR guru…or if you prefer, senior media advisor who is credited with turning Pope Francis into a man of the people. Appearing to have the ‘common touch’ should not be sniffed at. Winston Churchill had it. Burke by name but not berk by nature is the American author/journalist who in June 2012 was snatched from Fox News to help the Vatican improve its relations with the
mafia…media. Having worked for Time magazine in Rome for 10 years, and Reuters news agency, the man is amply qualified to turn around the fortunes of the premier Christian church. Mr Burke is a lifelong Opus Dei (God’s Work) member in which backlashing (self-flagellation) is considered de rigueur. Unfortunately, non Opus Dei members like me, must pay for S & M! One of the first things Mr Burke suggested was the shutting down of the Cardinals private bowling alley and disco, however the Friday night poker sessions are still ongoing!
I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it wasn’t Greg Burke’s idea for Pope Francis to publicly unveil for the first time, the nine fragments of bone thought to belong to the first Pope, St Peter. Thousands of worshippers packed St Peter’s Square to catch a glimpse of the bronze chest containing the fragments found in the necropolis under St. Peter’s Basilica during excavations in 1939. What a publicity coup…if short-lived! Unf**king-fortunately, Romanian Gypsy fortune-teller Madam Cucai ‘lifted’ the ‘runes’, intending to incorporate St Peter’s ‘leftovers’ in her ‘act’. Promises of fertility and good fortune had never had such provenance! ‘Entrepreneurship’ should be encouraged at all levels, don’t you think?
It constantly amazes me the extent to which members of the general public ‘follow’ their favourite celebrities, be it film star, singer or sportsperson. Why some obsessed fans even have surgery in order to emulate their heroes or heroines. It further amazes me how certain ‘personalities‘ can eek out their fifteen minutes of fame indefinitely! I guess that’s down to the internet? Take for example Kim Kardashian! She is one of the most talked about and photographed personality on the internet. Even if the young mother is ‘decent’ in all respects, what exactly is she famous for doing? Even if someone has a pretty face and an enviable backside, is that any reason to ‘follow’ her? Has she won an Oscar? Has she appeared in a play? Has she cracked cold fusion? And then there’s internet sensation, 20-year-old gym bunnie Jen Selter who possesses the world’s most famous ass!
What of infamy? (Notoriety gained from a negative incident or reputation). An actor or singer can get often get away with taking drugs or drinking to excess, but dare he or she get caught shoplifting (Winona Ryder) and the incident can wreck one’s career! If a politician gets caught drink driving or drug taking, well it will almost certainly destroy his/her career, but why should it? Don’t most of us already have a low opinion of self-serving elected officials? Why only twenty years ago if a politician was ‘outed’ his career was considered over too. Now politicians are openly gay. Who decides whose behaviour is acceptable and whose is not? I remain confused!
Not that long ago there were ‘stigmas’ attached to be an unmarried mother, a divorcee, a homosexual, a bankrupt, having a bad credit history, signing on for the dole, being long-term unemployed, being arrested for public drunkenness, particularly if you were a female, and revealing State secrets. Quite rightly, some of those stigmas should have been expunged. I guess what I’m trying to get at is ‘acceptable behaviour’. These days almost anything goes! The question is, should it?
It was a beautiful day today, but what marred it for me was I narrowly avoided being run over by a van. My fault. I wasn’t looking where I was going! I thought of all the people who would miss me had I died. There weren’t many! I wondered if anyone would discover greatness in my self-published novels and wonder why on earth no literary agent ever expressed an interest in representing me. I think I must have been born an irreligious atheist/God denier, because wherever I’ve been, whatever I’ve done, not for one solitary moment have I believed in life after death. No heaven, no alternate dimension where one meets and greets dead relatives, dead friends and dead pets. The end is the end, nonexistence, oblivion! Yet, when the heart stops, deprived of oxygen carried by blood, it takes a further 6-minutes for the brain to die. I do wonder what must go through one’s mind, if anything? If, as I believe, there is nothing else further, then what happens to a lifetime’s accumulation of memories and dare I say, wisdom? It must die with us, and if so, what was the point of a life in the first place? Could that be the big joke played upon us? Is ‘existence’ truly pointless? Is the true purpose of life to prepare oneself for death? Now you might turn around and say to me, ‘enjoy life while you’ve got it’. As a writer full of angst, unfortunately I don’t have that capacity! Of I wish I’d been a musician rather than a writer! Anyway, I think I deserve a brandy and a joint! Shit, I’m using too many exclamation marks!!!
Sorry, sorry…naturally I meant…vegans! But hey, before you get on my case, let me assure you, I’m with you! Whether vegans are prepared to eat meat under certain circumstances, really is a question is not worthy of intellectual debate, normally, however…I met self-declared Swedish vegan, Helga Mannstrom at the bar of the Portman Hotel, in Portman Square, London. First she told me she was a flautist with the Berlin Philharmonic, and then, after I offered to buy her a meal, she said that might be a problem for me, seeing that she was a practicing vegan. Anyway, I’m not one who is so easy defeated. I found a restaurant specialising in vegetarian/vegan cuisine…if you could call it cuisine…and Helga ate heartily…2 peanut butter sandwiches! Anyhow, we were on our second bottle of Zinfandel when the subject turned to sex, or more specifically, the vegan approach, if there was one, to offering blow jobs!
Approximately 2-hours later I sat up in Helga’s bed having experienced the most amazing blowjob of my young, shady life. Realising I had just ‘exploded’ the myth, I turned to Helga and said, “Where the hell did you learn to do that?” Helga replied, “David, I’m over here!” Shit, I was still seeing cross-eyed! I immediately repeated the question. “Playing the flute gives me strong lips and fingertips,” she replied. “I’m in London for another three days. Why don’t we do something?” Now you’re not going to believe what I said next. Frankly I don’t believe it either! “Sorry Helga, much as I appreciated the orgasm, I can’t abide hypocrites! Clearly you only give veganism…lip service!”
*In my own defence, I am still quite immature!