Archive for the ‘Utter bullshit’ Category
Question: What do you do in that moment of blind panic when your 12-year-old son stumbles upon the secret world of vice and illegality you thought was well hidden on the family computer?
Options: (a) confess all, (b) slip your son a fiver to keep quiet, or (c) report it to the police, write to the Home Secretary, and parade you and your son in the pages of the local paper with Gazette Faces in order to prove it’s got nothing to do with your own online browsing habits.
Grimsby Telegraph, 19 January 2013 (story):
‘Dark web’ warning to parents as Cleethorpes boy stumbles on grim internet world
A 12-YEAR-old boy from Cleethorpes stumbled across an internet underworld selling guns and sex with underage girls while looking for games online.
His appalled father now wants to spread the word to other parents and has even written to the Home Secretary about it.
Robert Palmer, 53, of Arundel Place, Cleethorpes, was horrified when his son Morgan, who suffers from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), told him what he had unearthed.
The computer whiz had found an ominous tutorial, explaining how to download a different web server, which he did, that unveiled the whole section of the internet not available to normal users.
Services advertised on the dark web include guns, contract killers, drugs, credit card skimmers, sex, child and animal pornography and identities for sale, which can be bought using an online currency called Bitcoins.
Sounds like a whole Narnia of sin. Not one to be selfish, the concerned moral crusader was keen to share news of this ‘whole section of the internet not available to normal users’ with other parents.
Mr Palmer said: “There is nothing you can’t get on there and some of it is pretty grim, so I think that other parents should know about it.
“Young people could get hold of drugs without even meeting a drug dealer, which is worrying. Morgan is sensible and luckily he told me.
Mr Palmer, who writes computer programmes himself, contacted Humberside Police but was told nothing could be done – although they have offered advice to parents and assured them that calls will be taken seriously.
Frustrated, he has written to Home Secretary Theresa May about the dark web, urging her to take action to protect the public from such blatant illegality.
Morgan, a gifted pupil at Cleethorpes Academy, said: “This is the mother-load of criminal websites – some of the things on there are appalling. I knew what it was straight away so I went to get my dad.”
It’s a bit out of order for little Morgan to drag his mother into this sordid episode.
This is a very sad episode in the life of Middlesbrough’s Evening Gazette.
It’s all very well that local newspapers publish classified adverts so the locals can wheel and deal in household appliances and the like, but when such adverts become the story it’s a different matter, and surely the lowest form of regional media coverage.
Middlesbrough Evening Gazette, 26 November 2010 (story):
Billingham hubby says goodbye to Angelina
A DIE-HARD Angelina Jolie fan is parting company with his beloved Lara Croft life-sized cut-out after his wife took a disliking to her.
Michael Coleman has decided to go his separate ways from the imitation Tomb Raider heroine after nine happy years together.
Michael said: “Angelina used to get quite a bit of attention from my mates. They used to think she was mint but Julie didn’t like her.”
But the couple are now planning a move to the Stevenage area, where Julie’s brother lives, and Michael has decided it’s time to say goodbye to Angelina.Michael, of Evesham Way, Billingham, said: “Apart from my wife, Angelina is the perfect woman. I want her to go to a good home.” The unemployed kitchen and bathroom fitter, who recently qualified after completing a college course, has put the figure, his “pride and joy”, up for sale.
Is it a requirement of being a qualified kitchen and bathroom fitter that you wear a jumper which advertises your tiling skills?
Clearly, the Evening Gazette doesn’t quite command the consumer pulling power everybody thought it did:
Middlesbrough Evening Gazette, 4 January 2011 (story):
Teessiders snub Billingham ‘Angelina Jolie’ sale
ONE of the world’s most beautiful Hollywood stars has been snubbed by Teessiders.
Despite attracting a flurry of attention on the Gazette’s website after featuring in our paper, few prospective buyers put their money where their mouth was to bid for the beauty. Disappointed by the reaction, Michael, 35, and his wife Julie, of Evesham Way, have now decided she can stay put.
The unemployed kitchen and bathroom fitter said: “I thought she would have been in popular demand but we did not really get that many offers.
“She folds in half and she is on top of the wardrobe. I don’t know if we will have her on display again, if we get a games room maybe.”
The mum of seven, whose children range in age from 13 to 25, said: “When we got burgled it put the wind up me seeing her there.”
But she said: “I’m quite happy to keep hold of her. In a few years she could be worth a bit more and we can pass her down through the family.”
Julie said her grandaughter Kelsie Willans, three, even has a look of the star. She said: “The cut-out might even go to Kelsie. She will probably look like her because she is gorgeous. She has the same lips.”
Yeah, your grandaughter probably will look like Angelina Jolie, obviously.
And no doubt one day you’re going to try and flog her in the local newspaper too, are you, are you? Shameful stuff.
Sometimes, even the imagination of a booze-soaked fantasist can become the news.
The Shields Gazette, 17 January 2011 (story):
Can you help solve pub mystery?A GAZETTE reader has asked South Tynesiders to help solve a pub ‘mystery’.
The woman hopes someone will remember a watering hole that she believes was built on South Shields seafront in the late 1980s.
But she hasn’t been able to find anyone else who remembers the short-lived bar and is praying someone can shed some light on the pub to “confirm I’m not going mad”.
She said: “After the burning down of Frankie’s Cafe, situated on the seafront in 1988, a new pub was built shortly afterwards, not directly on the same site but close by.
“This, I seem to remember, did not last very long. It may also have burned to the ground, but I do recall being there on one Saturday evening.
“I would love to know what the name of this pub was and maybe see a photograph of it just to confirm that I’m not going mad.”
If you can help solve the mystery of the pub’s identity, call 427 4852.
YER DRUNK, YER MAKING IT UP, AND YER GOING MAD, luv.
Thanks to Dan Coggins.
The Blackpool Gazette never shies away from the big questions:
Despite searching the paper’s website, I’m yet to find the story which might have given rise to this poll. If you’re aware of what possible motivation the staff of the Blackpool Gazette could have for popping the question, please do tell.
I voted yes, obviously.
Cats: some people drop them into wheelie bins, while some people enter them into national competitions. But which is the bigger form of abuse?
Local newspapers love nothing more than printing feel-good stories about domestic pets and their owners, as if we’re remotely interested or something.
Middlesbrough Evening Gazette, 22 June 2010 (story):
Redcar cat reaches finals of national competition
IS this Redcar moggy Britain’s most adventurous cat? Joanne Stephens of Redcar is celebrating after her pet, Jerry, leaped into the national finals of the Go-Cat Bobo Awards.
The awards – named after the feline star of Go-Cat’s latest TV ads – are given to the most adventurous cats in Britain.
Now judges have chosen Jerry as one of 12 finalists from nearly 800 entries. And if he wins first prize, he could bag Joanne an African safari to see some really big cats, plus a year’s supply of Go-Cat.
Cheeky Jerry’s habit of following Joanne into the shower is just one escapade which really appealed to the judges. But not content with getting wet, Jerry then runs up and downstairs to shake himself dry.
No way! ‘CHARACTER’ alert…
He also enjoys climbing curtains, pinching pizza and trying to climb out of the bathroom window.
Get out of here! BONKERZ.
He has a habit, too, of hiding Joanne’s belongings in the house – to the point where some items are yet to be recovered.
Merciless thieving little shit. Lock him up.
One of the worst things about the awful British consensus that ‘pets = good’ is, of course, the smug and self-satisfied gobshite tendencies of the people who own them. Just shut up, shut up, shut up. Please shut up. Shut. Up.
Joanne said: “Jerry’s adventures are more often than not, very noisy. If he starts one of his manic escapades in the evening, there isn’t any peace in our house.
“He loves attention when he’s awake and while we’re trying to sleep, he loves playing alarm clocks by running up the stairs with a squeaky rubber toy in his mouth.
“If only you could see him 24/7 you would be so tired!”
Jerry is also in the running to win the Indoor Cat category.
I wonder if Go-Cat will be introducing a Wheelie Bin category next year? Now that could be worth some media coverage…
This week in deepest Lincolnshire… is it a squirrell? Is it a monkey? No, it’s just members of the local constabulary managing to trick a newspaper into publishing a police in-joke.
Louth Leader, 13 August 2010 (story):
Monkey spotted running wild near Louth
A POLICEMAN has spotted a monkey running wild near Louth.
PC Paul French, a Neighbour Response Officer from Louth, was on duty travelling along Mill Hill Way in South Cockerington on his way back to Louth Police Station shortly after 11.30am this morning when a monkey ran out into the road in front of the Police car.
“I thought it was a squirrel at first,” explained PC French. “It was a similar size but was dark brown in colour and had a long, straight, upright tail. It paused for a moment standing on its hind legs, looked at me, then scampered off over the hedge”.
Despite searching for the animal, PC French did not get any further sightings of it.
Police are now keen to hear from anyone who may be missing a pet monkey.
I bet they’ll have had a laugh about this back at the station.
The saga rumbles on…
Louth Leader, 25 August 2010 (story):
Second sighting for monkey
THE MYSTERY monkey that was spotted down a quiet country lane in South Cockerington has been spotted again.
This time by another police officer, PC Ian Garrick, who saw the creature in the same location on Sunday August 15.
Police are still appealing for anyone to come forward to report a missing monkey which is described as being a similar size to a squirrel, dark brown in colour and having a long straight upright tail.
This description inexplicably fails to mention that the monkey is only visible to police officers.
Show me the monkey.
The regional media is happy to take its lead from the right wing national gutter press when it comes to scare stories about benefits.
The Bolton News has exhaustively covered the story of Terry Langford, 62, non-cripple, who was recently prosecuted for falsely claiming disability benefits in relation to arthritis. The prosecution was thanks to secret footage of him happily refereeing junior football matches, despite supposedly having awful arthritis affecting his hands, hips, knees and feet (which sounds like an arthritic version of ‘Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes’).
But don’t worry, Britain, the authorities have given him a slap on the wrist now. Although that’s probably the last thing he needed, really, given his condition.
The Bolton News, 31 July 2010 (story):
Whistle blown on benefits cheat referee
A DISABLED man who claimed he was crippled with arthritis was exposed as a benefits cheat — when he was spotted refereeing football matches.
Terry Langford, aged 62, of Corranstone Close, Horwich, got the highest level of allowance and was also receiving care because he said he was unable to cook or dress himself.
But yesterday, a video was played to a court which showed him:
- Kicking a football while officiating a game
- Running up and down the pitch to keep up with players
- Ducking under a fence when making his way on to the pitch
- Bending over to collect his possessions at the end of a game.
Bending over to collect his possessions… what an utter, utter bastard.
Joanne Tang, prosecuting on behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions, said: “Video footage was taken of him when he was refereeing and he was seen walking 100 yards from one end of the pitch to the other, and jogging and keeping up with play. He was able to stop, start, swivel and turn.”
Walking 100 yards, stopping, starting, swivelling and turning… what an utter, utter bastard.
Video footage also shows Langford stopping to issue a yellow card.
Stopping to issue a yellow card… what an utter, etc.
Marvellously, the link to the story features the damning video footage in extended form, clearly showing this bent ref AMBLING around his car in a painfully slow manner. He’s happy while YOU PAY TAXES for him to POTTER ABOUT.
Thankfully, The Bolton News eventually had the decency to allow Brave Terry to publish his side of the story, replete with a wonderful picture leaving the reader in no doubt about his arthritic hands.
Quite a heartbreaking tale, actually. The man was dosing up on painkillers just to make it bearable to do something other than sit still. But oh no… The Bolton News wants its pound of flesh.
Thanks to serial benefit fraudster Matt Kilsby for the story.
Local papers short on material simply love it when there’s a semi-humorous angle to what would otherwise be a tedious everyday occurrence, e.g. one person having their sleep disturbed.
Surrey Comet, 27 July 2010 (story):
Lost sheep wakes Worcester Park resident
While some people trying counting sheep as way of falling asleep, one Worcester Park resident was awoken by an errant ewe wandering through her street.
Michelle Williams was woken at 1am on Sunday night to the sound of bleating in her front garden in Clarkes Avenue.
Dressed in their night clothes, Mrs Williams, 45, and daughter, Jayde, 24, ventured out and tried to lure the sheep towards their home – without a great deal of success.
But Jayde came up with the ingenious idea of recording the sheep bleating on her iphone and then replaying the recording to the animal.
Hearing what it thought was another sheep, the woolly-wanderer finally followed them through the gate at the back of their house and safely into their back garden.
I’m sure there’s a word for this kind of behaviour. Shame on the Surrey Comet for (a) advocating it and (b) publishing tips on how to achieve it.
Some wonderful detail here though:
The sheep even had a slap-up breakfast of bread and shreddies before making friends with the family’s two-year-old pet French Bulldog called Rocky.
Jayde said: “They’ve been touching noses.”
We could do with some government regulations against letters to newspapers like this.
The Bolton News, 12 May 2010:
Don’t let health and safety rule your life
I BELIEVE we live in a Politically Correct and vastly over-regulated country, I offer you the following. I am a 68-year-old fit and active pensioner and when I woke up this morning at about 8am, the sun was shining, and I thought: “What shall I do today?”.
Well, first of all I have to do a “risk assessment” to see if it’s safe to get out of bed, due to “elf ‘n’ safety” rules — after all, I might stumble. Never mind, I could sue the bed manufacturers for making the bed too high!
I do get up without any mishaps and, after another “risk assessment” about the bathroom, I decide to have a wash, shave and clean my teeth.
Wait! — I haven’t been fully trained in how to use razors and toothbrushes, so I might be breaking the rules! I do manage to have a wash and shave etc, and then I go downstairs for breakfast.
Wait a minute! Is it safe to go downstairs, at my age, without supervision?
I decide that it is safe and so I prepare breakfast, Fruit & Fibre cereal followed by toast and a cup of tea.
Could the tea be too hot? What if I spill some on to my arms or legs?
Never mind, I could always sue the tea makers for suggesting that tea should be made with hot water.
Next, off for the morning papers — yet another “risk assessment”. Should I walk, or go by car — what are the risks?
If I go by car, I could go down one of the many large potholes in our area.
Watch TV in the evening and enjoy a glass or two of wine. Glass or two! Not without a full “risk assessment”.
And what about “elf ‘n’ safety” rules and Government advice about wine consumption!
And I shouldn’t use the remote control, because I haven’t been fully trained.
Ah well, bed time. Is it safe to upstairs on my own? And what about stepping into the shower? I could fall!
What a lovely day. I wish I had stayed in bed all day — but is that permissible in this PC world today? There must be some regulation governing staying in bed all day.
Whatever happened to common sense?
Welcome to Britain 2010! Have a nice day! Mind how you go!
David Willescroft, Smithills
This reference to not being trained in the use of a remote control is interesting. I wasn’t aware training was available, but then I suppose you can probably find somewhere to do a degree in remote control studies these days.
Thanks to Helen Williams and MKTBFFSTBF for submitting this letter in line with the recommended procedures.
Aside from stories about dog-dirt-riddled pavements or brave ‘Supermums’ repeatedly giving birth in order to achieve unnecessarily large families, the undoubted lifeblood of the regional newspaper is the mentally-unhinged serial letter writer. With boundless dedication to the cause and, occasionally, a fierce intellect, this special breed of ‘letter columnists’ can be found in all corners of the country and rarely shirk an opportunity to spout forth on any topic of note. Whether it’s social ills, sociable pills or antisocial people at tills, they’re all over it in the next day’s paper.
It would appear that the Sunderland Echo has a serial letter writer on its hands in the form of the self-styled Mick “The Pen” Brown. He’s not scared to put his pen to paper and is a most enlightening man, from whom we can learn much.
Lesson one: how to blame economic inequality on the long-term unemployed
Sunderland Echo, 21 April 2010:
PERHAPS the biggest problem in this country is the long-term unemployed. I have visited various cities in the last few days and the shopping centres are full of them.
You can spot them a mile off hanging around on benches watching the world go by, normally smoking if that city doesn’t have a ban in force and normally with a cheap carrier full of cans of alchohol. Just what are they doing in a city centre with no money?
People say that you should not tar all of these people with the same brush but did you know that they all have one thing in common? They can get in touch with the council, get their name on a list and get a house free.
Yes that’s right, free – and in the meantime somebody who works cannot afford to buy a house or rent a property as good as the one the benefit scrounger gets. So something is wrong somewhere.
The point is I can accept it if someone cannot find a job in a year – but four years, five years, ten years? It’s a joke.
I would like to see these people identified with a yellow stripe on their back then they should hang their head in shame as they walk through the streets as the workers count what the people have cost the taxpayer.
Mick “The Pen” Brown,
A better idea would surely be to get these people with yellow stripes on their backs to lie face-down in street gutters and serve as road markings to denote restricted parking. At least then they’ll be serving a purpose. “The Pen” has been slow here.
Lesson two: how to link inelegant diction to brands of footwear
Sunderland Echo, 26 April 2010:
Wrath of women
ONCE again I felt the wrath of the women who congregate on the steps of the Southwick bingo hall.
I was walking along minding my own business when I tripped and fell against a rather coarse and vulgar woman who was smoking and wearing a pair of Scholls.
In the melee that followed she dropped her carrier and various tins of cheap own-brand products fell upon the pavement. She then uttered some expletives that couldn’t possibly be printed in a newspaper and we went our separate ways.
The point is that bad language must not be tolerated in any form on the city’s streets and I propose that both men and women should be banned from swearing in public and heavily fined.
I dont know whether or not these people were bingo players or that they were waiting to catch the bus to the university, but you do not see many women wearing Scholls these days.
Mick “The Pen” Brown
Lesson three: how to sneer at the bingo-playing underclass
Sunderland Echo, 29 April 2010:
Why the trainers?
IS bingo now considered a sport?
I ask the question because every time I pass the steps of a bingo hall the players stand there in the traditional outfit of Aldi carrier in one hand, Woodbine or roll-up in the other and on the feet a pair of trainers.
I cannot understand this as I have never considered bingo as a sport. The thought of winning some cheap Tupperware has never appealed to me. It seems as though there are very few big winners you can tell when you see the gloomy expression when they leave the halls on their way to get the shopping at Aldi.
I think training shoes should only be worn in the street by serious sportsmen and women. It doesn’t exactly look feminine when yo see the over-sixties walking the streets in trainers.
Mick “The Pen” Brown
Lesson four: how to hate everyone/everything/yourself
Sunderland Echo, 3 May 2010:
On the buses
HAVE any Echo readers witnessed some of the behaviour by bus passengers?
The schoolchildren are unruly, bad mannered and cheeky.
Will they ever give their seat on a crowded bus to a OAP? Never, no chance. It’s the way they have been brought up.
As for the OAPs, they are just as bad or worse. They get on the bus with carriers full of tins of own-brand products which they place on their lap and also on the lap of the person sitting next to them, as they normally get on with too many bags.
Another reason for not using public transport is the dire conversation.
Why do the older passengers keep discussing the cost of food going up by a few pence? It’s the same old boring patter on every journey.
I would reintroduce the bus conductor, the clippie. She was normally a big stout woman with a ruddy face and wiry hair who had two satchels full of change and wouldn’t put up with any cheek from any children. She would sort them out. She may also refuse to allow some unsavoury types aboard.
I recently had the misfortune to walk through the interchange at Park Lane and this was without doubt an unpleasant experience.
A few of the folk hanging around resembled the third-class guests on the Titanic, the great unwashed. I would make them walk. Getting on a bus is a privilege.
If any Government minister thinks he is going to railroad me into helping the environment by travelling by bus he can forget it.
Mick “The Pen” Brown
Now close your textbooks, and we’ll see you at the next class.