Wednesday, 21 February 2007

analyse this...yourself

i've spent several days trying to finish a long and worthy post about this cartoon and how it highlights some shit or other. i give up. it made me laugh anyway:

from GYWO

Wednesday, 7 February 2007

did you leave your basket unattended at any time, sir?

there can't be many perks to working in brixton sainsbury's local. not because its a particularly rubbish job - lots of jobs are rubbish. you just ask phillip schofield. but it's very busy, everyone is extremely grumpy and it's blatantly only there to stop people going to the market, which sells much nicer, more interesting food but is fractionally more inconvenient. i don't imagine you get many free tickets to film premieres for example. or xbox360s. or respect from the local community for your frankly vital pasta selling work. but if it were me, there'd be one thing i would definitely enjoy and that's psychoanalysing your customers based on the contents of their shopping baskets.

this is obviously a game you can play without working in the shop. and it works in any shop of course, but i suspect there is a richer soup of human diversity in brixton sainsbury's than almost anywhere else i can think of. on my way home. where i regularly shop. (that's enough qualification. ed)

the joy of casually ascribing wildly inaccurate backstories to ppl based on the particular brand of tinned tuna they have purchased. the horror of seeing what groups of flat-sharing girls will actually call a meal in order to competitively out-under-eat each other. the record so far - 1 x pack of rice cakes 1 x small tub of low fat cottage cheese. for 3 of them. the nervous boyfriend trying to impress his bird with a "taste the difference" ready-meal, some salad, a "gu" pudding and a fearsomely expensive bottle of white wine. what better way to have your prejudices confirmed than by assigning them to random ppl based on the fractionally different configuration of the same old sainsburys rubbish you yourself have bought. what larks, pip.

but then, sometimes, someone comes along who makes you stop and take a good long hard look at them and yourself:

a squeezy bottle of tomato sauce and a bottle of martini cinzano bianco. WTF? what kind of meal could you have possibly prepared where those are the only 2 items you are missing?

is this some new cocktail? am i hopelessly out of touch for not regarding this as a normal combination? what's in the suspicious white bag?

to give you something to go on, this guy was heavily southern european, bordering on native american. fashionable jeans, ubiquitous but expensive "racing-style" motorbike jacket, large but also fashionable woolly hat and fake ray-ban aviators. i am fresh out of ideas. answers on generic supermarket receipt to this address, please.

as an aside, whilst finding a link for martini cinzano i found this fantastic archive of lots of leonard rossiter stuff including the cinzano adverts he did with joan collins. advertising as telling social commentary. with gags. those were the days. hurrah.

Tuesday, 6 February 2007

i am a weak-minded fool

goodness me, it's been 2 weeks already. i'm probably taking self-censorship to unnecessary levels here. however i spent much of last week recovering from various hang-overs and i believe all evidence suggests that if you're not safe to drive, you're not safe to post.

however, sobered as i am by all the salacious carnage the world has conjured up in the last few days, it is my skills as a rat catcher that has inspired me to post.

according to Desmond Morris, who knows a thing or two about cat behaviour, the little dears have a few problems dealing with the complexity of human/cat relationships. as domestic cats are descended from mostly solitary cat species, their little catty brains only really have 3 templates to base their relationships on: parent to child, child to parent and competitor to competitor.

so jah is very happy to be a kitten sometimes in order to get fed and have her tummy tickled, but there are times when the fact that she is a rock-hard mother of 9 takes over and she attempts to address the fact that, tho perfect in almost every other respect as one of her offspring, i do not catch rodents.

this is obviously a serious failing on my part. how can i be expected to survive in the real world without this elementary skill? jah frets. and wonders if maybe i'm a bit thick. so she responds in the only way she knows how.

cue screaming rodent dropped at your feet and a look of encouragement bordering on the patronising from jah.

now i have laughed in a smug, human sort of way at this behaviour. silly cat i have thought to myself. trying to teach me to catch mice. ridiculous. but until last night i had not perceived the subtlety of her scheme.

small mice don't present much of a challenge as they are far too much fun for jah not to bat around for a good forty minutes. consequently by the time they are presented to me for training purposes all that is required is that they be taken to an outside bin. this however is but the first step in my indoctrination.

next a very large rat will be brought in and dispatched with terrifying ruthlessness. again my job is purely to dispose of the corpse. jah hides her disappointment that i didn't take the opportunity to practice some neck bites or even a two handed pounce. but she knows what she is doing.

finally a medium sized rat is recruited to the cause. this, jah brings in and then "accidentally" lets go of it for a second. rat, sensing it's fate might not be as tightly sealed as it thought, makes a bee-line for cover. jah feigns indifference. "rat? what rat?". "that fucking rat, jah - the one behind the stereo. get rid of it!"

we then spend ten minutes as i flush the rat towards jah in the hope of her dealing with it. H informs me this is an exceptional spectator sport. sometimes jah can be persuaded to remove the interloper and sometimes she'll pop outside to lick flowerpots importantly and this is where her trap is set.

left with a decent-sized, uninjured rat in the house the only course of action is to don a gardening glove and go after the fucker. after some swearing, furniture recalibration and comical, high-speed twister-style manoeuvres, the rat can then be hurled through the cat flap to make it's merry way off to wherever it likes. prolly the nearest rat bar to relate this tale to some slinky lady rats in the hope of getting laid.

now this has happened a few times without me making the connection. then, last night, the same drill: medium sized rat makes a break for the back of the chest in the living room. i take a look at jah and, realizing help is unlikely to be forthcoming, trudge to the kitchen, retrieve my glove, and catch the rat by it's tail within 30 secs or so. hurl rat as far as possible down the garden in the hope of killing it without having to watch it at the same time. as i walked back up the garden, i registered the expression of pride on her catty face and i knew.

i have been trained to catch rodents by my cat.

the shame. me - top of the food chain and everything. still, good rat eh? still wriggling too.

next week H teaches me to clean the cooker using subliminal messaging.