Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Brolling about

I have been taking the opportunity to have a few days rest and relaxation. Well, that was the theory. It is top secret so don't tell anyone (let alone blog about it) but I was chosen to help host a pilot scheme for Cameron's daft vanity project (to replace other volunteering vanity projects of the past) summer gamp idea to encourage young umbrella volunteers.

Held on the Isle of Wight, it went surprisingly well as you can see from the pictures of young kids wielding infant brollies, some of them for the first time. But children aren't half hard work. Even though the weather was suitably damp and there was plenty of umbrella action to keep the young tykes happy, they kept whinging about the rain.
And one young Herbert nearly got a slap, 3 yr old or not, for insolence. "That's a smart brolly, son" I said. "It's not a brolly, it's a brella," he replied. Did he not realise who he was talking to? If you are gong to correct the DADDY of brollies, at least use a proper word.

Which all goes to show how branding is so important in terms of what we call ourselves. For example, am I a buffoon or an arse?

We are having a staff meeting later. We employ so many staff that we can't fit them into our building any more. Luckily half of them are always off on holiday to some exotic place or other, though I do take exception when they come back sporting beards. And that's just the women.

And we have managed to take a hostage from our arch rivals NCVO. The researcher Jacqueline Baffin is currently being tortured by Hector Rule and Fab Jobsworth until she reveals secrets of what Hubert's mob, and Earl Scalding in particular, are up to.

Oh, and I see my spoofer Stephen Bubb has been taking the piss by posting a picture of his dog (Sparkles...I ask you. What sort of name is that for a dog?) with an umbrella. He's stepping a bit close to the mark. Before we know where we are he'll be making fatuous statements so dripping with "irony" that people will get us mixed up and start threatening to not renew their membership with BUBB.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Social mobility and Labour nonsense. And a break from blogging.

I have been speaking an unexpected amount of sense lately which is disconcerting. I was upset that Colin Carpetburn was made social mobility tsar, however. If anyone knows about social mobility (pub crawls, swanning from lunch to drinks party etc) it is me.

And I am proper pissed off that my protege God Megagrand seems to be discounting the role of the brolly sector in Labour's response to Bogg Society. He wants to remember that it was being Brolly Sector minister that put him on the path to where he is today (desperately trying to hang onto his brother's coat-tails in the leadership race). I am deeply upset that years of arse-licking by me has paid absolutely no dividends. Never trust a politician.

But due to my inability to say anything else controversial I will be leaving the blog alone for a week and heading off to a secret location to try and regain my unique mojo.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Dame Luci killed Princess Diana

I have just read one of the worse pieces of journalism ever by the Express, whose blatant disregard of truth and balance in pursuit of shocking and making an impact frankly makes me look an amateur. They report that Dame Luci Vinyl, chair of the Umbrella Commission, has earned some money for doing her job. And that she killed Princess Diana.

I would recommend, in the interests of transparency, that the Editor of The Express, and its owner Mr Desmond, publish their earnings and expenses, if it wasn't for the fact that a) as a private company it is not really comaprable to someone receiving taxpayers' money and b) it would be a tad hypocritical given the fuss I made about revealing my own expenses last year. Oooops.

Free at last

Phew. At last I am out. While in Taunton I popped into the Umbrella Commission's office there to have a piss and ended up accidentally locked in their vast archives on brolly activity throughout history. 4 days I was in there without a bite to eat. And it was cold and damp in the cellar. Luckily there was plenty of old paper lying around that I was able to use to make a fire.

I did find some vaguely interesting stuff about my ancestors and their involvement with umbrellas through the ages and some fascinating stuff about umbrella sharing initiatives instigated by local groups - a sort of early incarnation of Bogg Society.

But there is only so much interest that you can sustain hearing about what some do-gooder with the same surname did in the olden days and thankfully the indomitable (ie. fierce) Juice Hoisins eventually heard my screams and let me out. For which I will reward her someday by publishing a blurry photograph of her sitting sheepishly at a desk.

And what do I find when I get out? More Bogg Society nonsense. Some of the latest mad cap schemes include:

To meet a shortfall after cuts in the RAF, citizens will be empowered to wear goggles and flying helmets and dick around in planes talking in a posh voice. It will be called the Biggles Society.

And to cover cutbacks in rail transportation, citizens will be empowered to run their own train networks and rob the profits so that the rail operating companies don't have to. This will be known as the Biggs Society.

Finally, I see the government's Bogg Society Network will be going on tour forcing organisations to buy into this supposedly bottom up volunteer led pile of arse.

Saturday, 14 August 2010

A right old pickle

My old mucker, Derek Gherkins, is all over this Coalition government like a fat bloke in a deckchair.

After opening up the books of his government department so people could scrutinise the dietary records of anyone who had consumed over 500 pies, he has decided to scrap the Audit Commission, the public spending watchdog as "there will be no public spending left to monitor soon".

No doubt, there will soon be a Bogg Society initiative empowering citizens to monitor public spending themselves.

Derek has also had the genius idea of combining the CEO and council leader role to save local authorities money. Perhaps the people tasked with the new joint role could carry out their own audits as well to save further cash.

Derek's final area of saving is to outsource his department's IT consultancy needs by asking people on Twitter whether he should upgrade to internet explorer 8 from internet explorer 6. Needless to say, the advice he received back was extremely sensible and helpful (check #itpickles feed on Twitter).

If any more graphical analysis is required, Derek will quite happily illustrate the efficiencies through pie charts.

Friday, 13 August 2010

Shower of shit

In many ways the perfect metaphor for our beloved government with its cuts and its excuses and its refusal to put umbrellas at the heart of reform.

The latest Bogg Society arsery came last night as Cameron empowered citizens to look to the heavens for inspiration as the government is no longer able to help. The Coalition have claimed credit for the meteor shower but were quick to say that if there was any damage caused it was a Labour legacy.

I didn't see a bloody thing at first then realised I had been looking in the wrong direction for an hour. I should have gazed up and not at the ground,

When I located them they weren't much to write home about so I have written to Rupert Murdoch. "Dear Rupe, I couldn't see the meteor showers properly. As they are Sky related I expect coverage in HD in future."

The other reason why they were hard to see was due to Cameron applying a cap on foreign bodies infringing "our" space. Therefore only 1 meteor an hour was allowed.

To cap it all (do you geddit?) I went outside in my socks to get a better view and stepped on a snail. But at least @BECKintl on Twitter has been able to turn my misfortune into a rather lovely little cartoon. Click here


I have been spending a few days in Somerset. I'm having a "research" week and spending it in Taunton Public library. The idea was to catch up with my reading - the biography of PL Travers, the Markov papers, etc under the pretence of looking stuff up for a lecture I probably won't give in September on umbrellas. However, in keeping with the modern approach to libararies they don't actually bother stocking many books now. So I have just spent the week surfing the internet and dicking about on Twitter at one of the 484 PC stations they have here.

Found out loads of fascinating stuff. None of it work related but still. Plenty happening in the world, especially as this Coalition government lurches from one policy pratfall to another, all with the vague nonsense of Bogg Society lurking in the background

For instance Dave Cameron has backed minimum alcohol pricing. "Pimms has to be at least £25 a pitcher to stop oiks drinking it".

And he wants to boost tourism, though I can tell him for nothing (and I will next time I see him in Lidl) that if you want more tourists to come to the UK you have to make alcohol even cheaper not more expensive.

In a speech that was almost satire-proof he called for people to take more British holidays as it will be safer than "travelling to all the countries I'm going piss off".

He invited foreigners to Britain to look at all the treasures "we nicked from you in the first place" and told Capello to retire Beckham so he can become a heritage attraction for this tourism drive.

"It is OK to encourage foreigners to flock to the UK as long as they look at a castle, buy a fridge magnet then fuck off again" he thundered.

In terms of Bogg Society, Cameron has empowered foreign citizens to come to UK and prop up the economy so the government doesn't have to. He has also empowered UK citizens to holiday in their local communities.

Finally, health experts have confirmed the presence of a dangerous new risk to hospitals.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

New Bogg Society initiatives

In the wake of the row and confusion over whether free milk was going to be snatched or not and which party started the snatching in the first place, a new Bogg Society initiative was launched. Citizens will now be empowered to get together and run cow clubs to provide their own milk. They will be called farmers.

And following David Cameron's announcement that credit ratings agencies (who have never ever made a mistake about a person's financial position - what could possibly go wrong?) will lead the fight against benefit fraud (MPs are exactly the right people to form policy on tackling those who defraud their benefits) there will also be a Bogg Society scheme whereby active volunteer nosey parkers will be able access people's financial records if they suspect "they are on the fiddle".

Giving (a shit) by the rich

Last week I applauded the decision of some disgustingly rich people in the United States to give half of their huge brolly collections to the poor. Oh the hardship these philanthropic exemplars will feel as they age and it starts raining and they only have 2 billion brollies to choose from instead of 4 billion. (And it is one thing saying that you will hand over these headline grabbing quantities of gamps and actually doing it. Anyone can say they will do something, garner the attendant positive glow of publicity and then quietly not do it when the fuss dies down. There is no accountability for it, no one will check when you die, and even if they do, so what?)

Anyway, I suggested that more of the UK rich, especially the bankers and city wankers (I hate the bankers. Did I mention that before? Bloody parasites. Oh, except when they sponsor BUBB activities or sit on the board of the Brolly Investment Business) should do the same.

My nephew, currently at Oxford, naturally, had the cheek to slap me down in a comment on my blog the ignorant pampered elitist snobbish uber capitalist little shit. His attitude that paying tax is a burdensome duty for the rich (oh bless that they should have to contribute to reducing inequalities in society), that there should be something in it for them if they are to give back to the poor and using guilt trips on him will make him buy a yacht instead speaks volumes really.

If there weren't people earning such massive amounts of cash on the backs of others' efforts in the first place (helped by an in-built elitism perpetuated by institutions such as Oxford, naturally) we might not need such generosity and charity as society would automatically be fairer. What the super rich giving to charity does is merely reinforce where the power lies, not address inequality. And so the status quo is maintained.

Sorry, came over a bit simplistic Marxist there. Almost forgot myself and thought I was an angry young man again rather than a champagne socialist,trying to ease the plight of the poor over fine food and wine. What would my dear friend Tony Blair say?

Monday, 9 August 2010

Free iPad

You can't escape the iPad, and offers to receive too good to be true free ones, especially on Twitter where clicking a link to greedily obtain your generous gratis reward like Naomi Campbell at dinner with a Liberian warlord can lead you into trouble. Why the very fact you are reading this might well be because you were seduced by my apparent generosity. But it is all a ruse. I won't give you a virus like some but the link is merely a device to keep you informed about the latest portable device I am developing to shield you from the rain. Yes, later this year I will be launching the iGamp. My rivals claim that such a technological precipitation shelter gizmo already exists (the iMac) but the iGamp will blow this backward gadget out of the rain water with its mobility and functionality. Watch this space.

Getting on with it

Not much to report from me. I have been busy actually doing my job, engaging with members, speaking sense about cuts and Bogg Society and generally being unspoofable. As I move around London between meetings, whenever I get the chance I pop into a church: for a few moments reflection, but also because London churches are such a treasure store. You can pinch some lovely trinkets, stained glass, roofing materials and cushions as there is never anyone watching you.

I will just say I am not happy with the Bogg Society Network. Quite why we need another umbrella organisation beats me. Having more than one is bad enough.

And while I have been impressed by Cameron's straight talking and blatant disregard of factual accuracy in the rush to jerk his knee, I would offer him one tip. He needs to get himself a blog if he really wants to utilise the potential for on the hoof policy formulation. And gaffes. Then he will truly be the gaffer. While the foreign office have taken emergency measures to silence him with this, they'll find it is much harder to censor spontaneous online ill-considered reaction ramblings.

Speaking of which, I am sure normal service on that score will be resumed by myself soon.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Gnat Pee and GNATO and Gnat West

Well that was interesting. The meeting with Gnat Pee that is! I admit I had been wary, given some of what I had read and heard about him, and the way he has readily hijacked my Bogg Society piffle as his own serious idea but it turned into an energetic and lively discussion. Clearly someone who likes the sound of his own voice and has an inflated sense of his own importance. So we are on the same page there.

However, as I told him, some of the Bogg Society ideas need grounding if they are to work. And when I say grounding I mean sent to their rooms and locked up before they cause any more trouble.

Then it was off to a meeting with GNATO (Gamp Nerds Acting Twattishly Often). I have to admit that in my time at BUBB I have meet with some interesting groups and organisations but GNATO is something else. They have asked me to join.

Finally, it was off to the bank, my local branch of Gnat West. I hate the banks with their profit related business model. It is is disgraceful that they have returned to making huge profits again. They should be losing money hand over fist and being a further burden on the taxpayer, not doing well and thus putting themselves in a position to pay the State back. The nerve of it. I would specifically slag off RBS at this point but they have sponsored a lot of BUBB stuff in the past so best not to eh?

After all this and a meeting with my Great Aunt Maude I was fair whacked. But what I get up to at home is my business.

So another visit to the Proms was a real treat. Handel's Water Music was a real soggy pleasure. But isn't it time for a brolly sector symphony? Featuring Rihanna?

Back from Ireland

Had a great weekend gamping. Got brollied on umbrella based drinks (cocktails) and saw some top notch gampertainment. But I was getting paranoid that the staff were getting on too well without me. I tried to have a conference call with them but they told me to piss of and stop bothering them. Apparently all the noise from the festival was distracting them. So I am back in the office. Plenty of meetings today, more on these later.

PS Am thinking of getting a new Blackberry. But which of these should I choose? I don't want one that ends up with the signal getting constantly jammed.