The Chicken Years

Internet advertising is an odd beast. Facebook seems to have pinned me as a man who likes his golf, his Trump and his new age retreats, to judge from the ads it shows me. From my age, perhaps. Or my maleness. Or the colours and texture of my aura.

But over the last few weeks, a certain ad has been following me around the internet, at least on my mobile phone. Any website containing advertising that I open will, in seconds, be showing me the following advertisement:

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These are chickens. Wearing reflective vests. One is pink. The other is yellow. You know, for those chickens who are picky about their colour schemes.

One question here is why chickens need reflective vests — maybe they’re laying tarmac, or directing crowds to fire exits? Fuck knows. The other question here is why the site lantbutiken.se is apparently so keen to have me as a customer. They sell farming equipment and I am currently not a farmer, nor an owner of chickens.

The ads they show me do push the whole chicken angle pretty hard. Observe:

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This chicken is wearing a camouflage vest. No, I don’t know why either.

It’s possible, I suppose, that I accidentally clicked on an ad for chicken stuff one time. So now lantbutiken.se is convinced I’m a chicken accessory collector just waiting to come out of the coop. Or maybe their calculations show that a 40+ man with an Irish surname simply must be interested in chickens, and that’s all there is to it.

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Here is a water feeder for chickens. And some kind of … chicken-proof apron?

So, lantbutiken, I’m afraid you’re clucking up the wrong tree here. Save your money and advertise to someone who doesn’t live in a second-floor flat, in a city. Although if I ever need to kit out an all-chicken army or building crew, I do know exactly where to go.

/ paddy

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The Leaving Of Twitterpool

So here I am, then. Sneaking back in to do a blog post. With my tail between legs.

After that debacle in the US in November, I pretty much left Facebook and Twitter and stopped reading the news. The world is sinking into bubbling shit and knowing exactly the volume, depth and consistency of that shit makes me feel only depressed and hopeless. Also, the less I see of that fat orange mouthy fucker with the hair, the better.

But I realised a thing — blogging is now old-school. It’s practically vintage. The kids are all up in their Snapchats and their Instantgrams, but blogging is hard-core, with text measured in pounds and feet and not characters. Something requiring effort. Like a thing your old grandad would sit in an armchair and reminisce about.

Being (almost entirely) social media free is also great. You sleep better. You are less worried. You don’t know who just died. And when you meet friends in the pub, you actually have something to tell them that they haven’t already read in minutely commented detail. Just like it was in the past.

passionBut the social media itch remains. So you know what I did instead? I started, to my eternal shame, to use Linkedin as a social media site. I know. Yes, I know. I scroll through that sleazy little feed, nodding at people’s new jobs and titles and what motivational videos they recommend. And I feel so dirty. Plus, people even there are going on about fucking Trump. There is no escape.

Due to my shameful presence on Linkedin, and my having clocked six years at the same company, I’m a tiny bit keen to get myself a new job. So I’ve been looking at lots of job ads. And apart from being over-wordy and packed with awful English, there is a thing I’ve noticed. Passion.

When did having “passion” for a thing become required to get a job with said thing? Why is it no longer seen as okay to just turn up for the money? In the old days, were people looking for carpenters with a passion for chisels? Or plumbers who were team players? Or cooks who burned for, um, not burning things? I don’t think I’ve seen a game developer job ad where passion doesn’t appear in the first two sentences.

meeting

My good lady has the theory that the whole passion thing emerged from the middle class. Once people of all social classes had to go to work, it became nice to pretend that fancier people did it mostly because it excited them. The thing about paying the bills was secondary. Only riff-raff worked just for the money. But we work because it sets out hearts and minds on fire, and not because of the paycheck and free buns.

Maybe that’s the reason. Or maybe it’s just the way you advertise jobs these days (although I’m fairly sure that ads for more mundane or unskilled jobs aren’t all about the passion). I don’t have passion for my work. I enjoy it. I happily do it. But they’re getting my hours, and not my soul. Should I happen to have one.

And that’s it. End of post. Now, you may notice I’ve turned off the comments. That’s because I don’t want any. Comments have done enough damage in the world already and nobody ever came away from a comment exchange feeling any better.

So if you have something to add, send me a mail. Or a telegram. Or a nice big cake. Or just take me to the pub and berate/hug me in person.

/ paddy

Totally Not Gay

Advertisers (may the good Lord have mercy on them) are skilled at creating need where no need exists, and will spin the most incredible lies to make it happen. I’m particularly interested in how they pretend to “break taboos” to make new markets for their shiny bullshit trinkets. Like, oh let’s say, cosmetics aimed at men.

Razors and shaving gels are basically cosmetics and are sold in a very specific way. Which is the following. Show a rugged NOT GAY man in his clean and shiny AND NOT GAY bathroom. He’ll be shaving and – NOT GAY! – moisturizing and occasionally slapping himself in the face in a very NOT GAY manner. Probably while thinking of fighter planes or racing cars or horses – NO, NOT HORSES! GAY! – sorry, sailing ships, all while wearing a self-satisfied grin. Maybe some teeth will be broken. You know, from all that manly fighting.

And then – and here’s the crucial part – a hot chick will appear in time to smile and kiss him and rub a very definitely feminine hand across his clean manly jaw. This scene is vital just to dispel the final shreds of doubt about this guy POSSIBLY BEING GAY. And then maybe an explosion, just for good measure. A good orange and red and pi – NOT PINK! – explosion. Yeah. Yeah! Fuck it YEAH!

But now these ads have been vastly out-manned by the manly, masculine, macho, straight and quite definitely hard ad for this new product – nail varnish for men. Here’s the ad. It pretty much speaks for itself. Drop your jaw now, it’s easier that way.

(If the link’s broken, just do a search for Alpha Nail. Yes, you heard me. Alpha fucking Nail.)

What an utter and total cock. He’s NOT GAY though, as shown by, oh, pretty much everything in that ad. Now I’ve been dabbling with using nail varnish for years, for special occasions. I quite like it. I know other men who do too. And we don’t require a 5o-megaton high-octane flesh-neck-screaming moron to get us to do it.

I hope this product fails. Because buying a ballsy for-men product isn’t “hard” or “manly”. You know what’s ballsy? Walking into a shop and buying “ladies” nail varnish just because you want to. And putting it on, just because you want to. And ignoring what rugged insecure nitwits on TV are telling you about how and in what way you should “be a man”.

And hey, why not finish off with this, which sums up marvelously how ads aimed at men and women are different.

/ paddy (as gay as the next man)

Ikea’s Invisible Woman

Today there’s been a storm in the Swedish media (and most others too) about Ikea. Apparently they’ve been airbrushing women out of their catalog for the Saudi Arabian market. The Saudis don’t like looking at photos of women. Especially not women hanging out at home and having the audacity to WEAR PYJAMAS. The filthy tramps. Pyjamas! What will the children think? Or maybe they’re not allowed to think at all? Phew, close one.

So, anyway, Ikea doesn’t feel it should take any responsibility for the way their oil-rish customers would very much like to shit on human rights. They’re just there to sell furniture, they say. Very nice, Ikea. How useful that your corporate “ideals” are exactly the same ideals that will earn you lots of money. What a very happy accident. Let’s suck money out of a country that oppresses half of its population, while rabbiting on about “female empowerment” in other areas. Areas, by another amazing co-incidence, that will ALSO earn Ikea lots of money. Wow!

Screw you Ikea, you corporate slug with your shitty furniture and your high opinion of yourself, using your power and influence for nothing good whatsoever. Take your carefully constructed “we care” bullshit, insert it firmly into slot B and turn it a full revolution. Either direction is fine.

Click through the photos in the Swedish newspaper (first link above). There’s a photo showing some Ikea designers, and the same one in the Saudi catalog but with the single woman removed. I bet she’s happy about that and can’t wait to work for Ikea again.

But I have a solution for Ikea. Just release the catalog without women or men or any people at all, and instead put all the people on separate stickers. Then we can have a jolly old time putting in people of whatever race, sex, or flavour into any situation we desire. Imagine it! Grinning babies in ovens. A line of men’s heads on the top shelf of a Billy. A woman showing her hair. A scary man hiding under the children’s bed.

And presto – suddenly nobody is offended! Endless fun and chuckling for all! Except for the ones who have to suffer for it, in a country Ikea will do nothing whatsoever to improve. Unless, of course, there’s a profit in it for Mr. Kamprad. Then it’s all steam ahead, and corporate bullshit to maximum. Cash ahoy, mateys!

(Photos above were nicked from here, where there is also lots of other good photos.)

/ paddy

Prometheus – Space Turd

What do you get when you put the most incompetent bunch of idiots ever assembled on a spaceship, and team them up with the most moronic and lazy scriptwriters money can buy? You get Prometheus, is what you get. The latest nail in the coffin of movie science fiction and intelligent cinema. And the latest reason to keep old men away from the good things they made in their youth. At all costs.

This film is a joke. It pretends to be “deep” and “philosophical” but just throws together random and badly thought-out space-movie tropes in any order. None of it makes sense, even in the logic-sparse world of big-screen science fiction.

Every single thing the characters do is unbelievable and stupid. They expose themselves to alien environments and substances at the drop of a hat. They show no curiosity about the things happening on their own ship. They all seem incredibly unsuited to their jobs. They are scared by pointless things, and completely not bothered by, oh, actual aliens.

Two crew members die in the alien structure, and nobody knows about it. Despite having a fucking massive high-tech console with every possible kind of feed. Apparently there’s no “record” function, and the guy on duty heads off for a quick shag. Nobody misses them until the next morning, and still they can’t figure out why they’re not saying anything.

Don’t even get me started on the alien structure’s very handy holographic projector, which replays only scenes that are extremely relevant to the plot, for no fucking apparent reason. Or the “archeologists” who’ve crossed thirty light-years for this mess and decide to take the first night off and hang out a bit. In their bedroom. Or the inane warbling about alien and human DNA being the same, while ignoring the fact that human DNA is similar to that of every creature on the Earth.

I can forgive a little hand-waving in movies, a little glossing-over of plot points for the greater good. But not in every single fucking scene. This movie was one long pointless chore. A chore made much worse in that I had to watch the fucking thing in 3D. And pay 50% more for my ticket for the fucking privilege.

Basically, I require the same from my science fiction movies as from other kinds — that they make sense. Why is this very basic demand so often disregarded? Do they assume we’ll come for the fucking flashy CGI and turn our brains completely off? Just because there’s spaceships and, oooh, aliens? Fuck you Hollywood, you lazy arrogant pricks.

I want to shove a spear up Ridley fucking Scott’s arse for treating me like a moron. That’s what he did with this movie. He charged me money for this dirge and sprayed diarrhea on a screen and said, “Look! It’s an alien, see?”

Don’t see this. It makes science fiction, the most intelligent and far-thinking of genres, into shit pudding. And please, somebody stop that bastard Scott from ruining Blade Runner in the same way by doing a prequel or a fucking remake or whatever the fuck he might be planning. For all that’s good and fine, please stop him. With a crowbar if necessary.

/ paddy

Japan Pearl Harbour Earthquake Fuckwits

It’s pretty hard to miss the news coming in from Japan. If a crushing earthquake wasn’t enough, the country was ploughed by tsunami and now faces nuclear fallout from its aging reactors. Thousands are dead, more are missing and millions are homeless. Watching the news for just five minutes is pretty heart-wrenching.

You would think the world would show its sympathy for Japan in the same way that most of us showed sympathy for the events of September 11 2001. Unfortunately this wasn’t entirely the case as shown by this image doing the rounds over the last day or two. I’ll link to the fucking thing, but I won’t give it any column inches. It’s basically a collection of retarded moronic red-neck comments made by idiot Americans on Facebook. Have a look, if you must, but hold your breath.

These brilliant samples of humanity are pointing out how the Japanese deserve this horrendous situation because of Pearl Harbour. They bombed us, yeah, de sure did, so fuck ’em. Well pass the shotgun ma there’s a squirrel on my knee and my dick is the sick of an acorn, ha-yuck.

These people. These fucking people. There’s not much to say really, is there? It’s just mind-melting that useless pieces of crap like this can live and breath and share the same planet as the rest of us. Even if their little comments were accurate, it would be a very nasty thing to say right now when the Japanese are suffering like this. However there is very little that can be considered true in their Pearl Harbour comment. Let’s just throw a few facts out there, shall we.

A good many people died at Pearly Harbour. Mostly soldiers though. Soldiers in a war. At Hiroshima and Nagasaki civilians were targeted (which I believe is called terrorism) and vastly more were killed. And there is plenty of evidence to suggest that the atomic attacks were not actually necessary to stop the war at all and were only done to show the world what the American atomic weapons could do, and also to crush Japan quickly so the USA wouldn’t have to share it with the Russians as they did with Germany. “Saving American lives” wasn’t really a consideration. It was about power and posturing, and as for dead civilians… fuck ’em.

Then of course Pearl Harbour wasn’t really part of the US at all, but annexed by them, which means basically stolen, in 1893. Do our fantastically thick Facebookers know this? No, of course they don’t. By all means, prove me wrong people, please do.

Finally, of course, being Americans, I would guess that the majority of these fine people would describe themselves as Christians. And not at all understand why that’s ironic. Because, as I’ve mentioned, they are as fucking thick as a shit slushy.

I’ve checked a few people on this image, and they do indeed have real Facebook accounts. This is possibly the most scary thing of all, that this is actually for real. If anybody wants to harass them and send them naughty words, you have my blessing. They deserve nothing less, the rancid malevolent little turds.

Ignore those morons, Japan. They don’t represent us. We promise.

/ paddy

The Golden Shower Solution

Goodness me, is that the time? Three weeks since my last blog entry? I think my brain is entering some kind of hibernation period. It’s the weather, I say. Perhaps a catastrophic lack of tea and biscuits. Or maybe I’m just in need of a good, hard, proper… oh yeah, my family might be reading… bugger… urm, a good hard proper… crossword…

But alright, for your titillation allow me to present a story from that shit-house of a newspaper, Sweden’s Aftonbladet. The title? “Cold-weather expert says to piss on the tongue”, which pretty much sums it up. You see, this ex-army no-nonsense dude suggests that when the wee ones do what wee ones do and get their tongues stuck to metal poles in winter, that the only solution is to produce the old fleshy hose-pipe and piss on them.

Now I’m not saying it doesn’t work but I am pretty sure that, along with me, everybody out there shudders when they read this. And now I have a permanent image of the old chap popping open his fly with a grim look about him, turning to the tongue-stretchy kid and saying – “Hold on there now Timmy, this won’t hurt a bit. Wait… wait… hang on… ah there we go, better in than out, eh lad?”

And yes, I know I should be talking about serious things like suicide bombers and whistle-blowers but fuck it. That shit’s far too depressing. So if you want some good old-fashioned and non-lethal pee humour in these dark times, you know where to come, and keep on coming… oh crap, wait…

/ paddy