Monday, 30 April 2012

Interlude: 1

Scurferens is taking a break for a couple of months. In the meantime, please enjoy these interesting facts about your least favourite blog.

The very first episode of Scurferens was written in a police cell after its creator was arrested under the 2007 Violences Against the Human Act on a charge of 'causing bodial injury to a man or woman in view of three or more witnesses, one of whom is still receiving therapy for a childhood trauma relating to events of a similar nature and is consequently unable to watch boxing, cage fighting or other full contact sport (including, but not limited to, rugby, sumo wrestling or gougeball) without becoming very quiet, causing others present to enquire as to whether anything is wrong, so that the witness will reply: "no, I'm fine, thanks"'.

Monday, 2 April 2012

10p Rote Cons Agenda

And regret, Aries. You're going to be feeling a lot of that too. And let me tell you, you're an idiot.

If you need an emotional reflex to dissuade you from repeating past mistakes, then you're even more pathetic than I thought. Just stop making mistakes. What are you doing with your life? Get a grip, Aries.

You might want to take a lesson from the esteemed physicist Professor Lordson Monday. There was a man. Did you ever hear about the time he returned home from screwing some hot chick to find a bunch of stupid kids in his house, wrecking all his shit? What do you think you'd do in that situation, Aries? You'd probably cry and post something emo on the internet. But what do you think the Professor did, after kicking those stupid kids out of his home? I'll tell you what he did: he took positive action. (Positivity. There's a word to keep in your shit head. Remember it.)

Anyway, so Prof Monday, he thought to himself, I'll teach those stupid kids. And that's exactly what he set out to do - literally teach them, in a language he knew they'd understand. He sat down at his computer and produced an experimental Flash game with a powerful message about not just letting yourself into other people's houses.

After two months, he'd barely left the house, he'd been suspended from work and the hot chick wasn't returning his calls, but he didn't care. His masterpiece was finished.

Unfortunately, the kids didn't understand. The game got an average rating of one star on Newgrounds.com and less than favourable reviews:

"wtf is this sh*t?"

"Cr*p graphics, cr*p music, cr*p game. Sorry man, this just sukced."

"lol I misaed the jump over moat into the guys house and got eaten buy th shark"

His plan had failed. But did he waste time wallowing in regret? No, he didn't, Aries. He sat down and figured out his next move.

At the edge of town was an old-style windmill - no longer functioning, just a local feature, something for the tourists to gawp at, but soon to burst unbidden through the leathery membrane of history, as the centrepiece of Professor Monday's most astounding act of derring-do.

Working nights, Monday brought his engineering skills to bear in secretly transforming the windmill into an amazing flying machine. By the time he'd finished, three months later, he'd lost his job completely and the townsfolk were starting to get suspicious. But the Prof had bigger fish to fry.

The windmill was loaded with supplies and many of the neighbourhood's pets lured inside. Having performed his final checks on the machinery and killed all the animals by injection, Professor Monday cast off into the clear blue sky and set course for adventure.

The wreckage was found two years later, at the bottom of a ravine just a few miles out of town, along with the mangled skeletons of Prof Monday and fifteen assorted household animals. Strewn across the ground were hundreds of pornographic magazines, about thirty novelty massage devices of various descriptions, a case of vegetable oil, two packets of jammy dodgers and eight tins of Heinz Spiderman pasta shapes. Professor Lordson Monday had clearly died as he'd lived: in the most awesome way possible.

He'd had no time for pointless soul-searching - he just did stuff, and to hell with the consequences. And do you know what, his lovely little Flash game received a critical reappraisal in the wake of his untimely death, and now has a score of 2.5 on Newgrounds.com. So it just goes to show, doesn't it?

I beg you, Aries, if you take one thought away with you today, please let it be this:

Do I - that is, Aries - really want to live a life speckled with the jismic crustplates of regret, fear and hatred - like the barnacle - or would I rather live, as Professor Lordson Monday did, in the manner of the baboon - bravely, fearlessly, untroubled by conscience or reason?

Crunch time is coming, Aries. You just better be ready is all I'm saying.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Butterflies And Ribs

Aries
21 Mar - 20 Apr
K, you're going to be feeling a lot of negative emotions today, Aries. Lot of anger, lot of hate. Naughty Aries. These are the forbidden emotions. Hate is for bigots. Rapists. Murderers. Many of them feel love too, and joy, but that's not important now. We're talking about hate. There is never any justification for hate. Come on, just because you're an enlightened liberal, doesn't mean you should be afraid of blanket assumptions. Fear breeds hate, remember?

If hate weren't a bad thing, then why would people be all, like, "yeah... if you hate someone, then you're just no better than they are, man"? Think about it, yeah? If you hate, like, some bloke who got into your house one night when you were away and slaughtered your entire family in their beds, then you're just the same as him. You might as well have been there with him, hacking your own flesh and blood to pieces. Why would you do that? That's ridiculous.

If you succumb to hate, then you lose your humanity. There's no room for hate in the spectrum of human experience because hate is ugly and humanity is beautiful, man, like a snowflake on a tiny black kitten. Like a troll in a ball gown made of spun glass. Like an amazing windmill that's taken off into the air, piloted by an eccentric professor with a menagerie of dead animals.

Helpful or harmful, your actions are unimportant, Aries. What matters is what's in your heart. Why don't you have complete control over your subconscious? The rest of us do, don't we, guys? What's wrong with you? Why can't you be more like us? You should probably just take all that hate that's inside you and direct it right back at yourself, because you're a piece of shit.

Better run, Aries. We're coming for you. We can't have people like you messing up our happy world, where negativity is denied expression, and misery is punished with huge, penis-shaped fists of love. Better remove yourself, Aries, steal yourself away, far from us, where you can't infect us, or I swear to God, when we catch up with you, we'll tear you limb from limb.

Go now! Your feelings are repugnant to us.

Monday, 19 March 2012

Sean Robots

Hi. I hope you don't mind, but I thought I'd try something different this week. I've been doing a lot of soul-searching over this, whether to share what I'm about to share with you, and it occurred to me that some of you have been reading this blog for a long time, I feel we've grown together, and in all honesty, I feel very close to you. So I think the time is right for me to step out into the spotlight and reveal something of myself to you, the reader, whom I cherish so dearly.

When the Artist makes a decision to drastically change direction, it's not done lightly. Over time, the audience rightly comes to expect certain things of him or her, and to suddenly break from these expectations could be seen as an abandonment, a betrayal of the sacred bond between the Artist and their audience. But if the audience truly loves the Artist, as I believe you love me, then surely it should be prepared to let them go free?

The Artist craves freedom. Artists are special people, with a unique and important role to play in society, and they mustn't be bound by the constraints to which the ordinary are subjected. The Artist's soul is as delicate and precious as the wing of the moth. Have you ever seen what happens when you try to hold a moth by its wing? Don't break the Artists' wings. They need them to transcend the petty concerns of ordinary people, to fly away and seek wisdom and beauty.

Take the example of Sam Peckinpah. Peckinpah initially conceived the ending to Bring Me The Head Of Alfredo Garcia as a punchline of sorts, in which it was to be revealed that El Jefe's compound was just 15 miles south of the titular Garcia's burial place. Realising that so much of the journey that had cost himself and so many others so dearly had been unnecessary, Warren Oates' protagonist Bennie was to burst into laughter in front of El Jefe's gates, finding at last the redemption he had been seeking. In fact, the redeeming power of laughter was originally intended to be the central message of Bring Me The Head Of Alfredo Garcia.

However, friends, associates and backers expressed doubts, reasoning that such a film would only further alienate Peckinpah's already dwindling audience. His vision crushed, his beautiful moth wings twisted, Peckinpah dutifully returned to the themes of misanthropy and nihilistic despair for which he had become known. Ten years later, he was dead.

- - - - -


What I want to share with you today is a poem. Poetry is a dangerous endeavour, and the Poet a courageous figure. In writing a poem and giving it to the world, the Poet is essentially making him or herself naked, to be pored over by the audience's eyes. Tiny, piggy, greedy eyes. Ugly, leering faces. The Poet undresses so that the world might be able to make sense of itself. There is no overstating the bravery of this sacrifice.

For 18 months now, I have given you laughter. And as the great Peckinpah himself would concede today, had he not been destroyed by people like you, laughter is a tremendous gift, one for which I'm sure you are grateful. But I feel now that the time is right for me to evolve as an Artist, to be taken seriously, to produce Important Work. And so I hope you too are ready to expand your horizons, to evolve with me and fully appreciate the breadth of my vision, the exciting new fruits of my creationspace.

Behold.

Song Of The Toilet

Guttural vocalisations
cut through the particles
of an air choked by the molecules
of your fragrant rejections.

Jesus, what have you been eating?
Arse-coughed germs of passed sins
into the lungs of the gathering,
reluctant witnesses to your heavings.

Not good enough for you,
but good enough for the rest of us,
we, the open mouth
that receives your morbid cargo.

I thank you.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Multi-Coloured Rimathon

Last Night's TV
reviewed by Jennel Croles

Okay, I hold my hands up! I was initially scathing about C4's new docusoap A Pirate's Life For Me..?, but three epsiodes in, I have to confess - I'm hooked!

After narrowly escaping capture last week, the Feared Pirate Moll Frichter has been giving some serious thought to a career change. A sensible move in any case, but with Transport for London's recent offer of an amnesty to all who promise to renounce piracy, now would be the time. For Moll, however, there are deeper reasons.

"My heart was never really in piracy. I just sort of fell into it after I left uni, thought it'd do until something better came along. But then I found I was quite good at it, kept getting promoted... Before you know it, years have gone by. A story familiar to many, I should suppose. Yea, daily the big, shitty net of comfort is dragged through the stagnant waters of our society, sweeping up and pacifying young, ambitious individuals whose talents would be better deployed elsewhere. And it's too late to do anything by the time they've come to their senses. They have Ko Phangan in October to save up for."

So what is it that she really wants to do?

"I always wanted to do abstract dance. Ever since I was a little girl, nothing has ever given me as much joy as the feeling of pure movement."

How well do you work with choreographers?

"I prefer not to. Choreography is an external influence which corrupts the purity of the process. I can't really move in a prescribed way. I have this kind of freestyle thing going on. I like to just close my eyes and allow my body to do as it will. I have an internal choreographer - innocent, primal, the choreographer of the aeons. I like to just feel the shit."

I'm sorry, but this company adheres to the very specific vision of its founder, Meat Philips: He's The Greatest Dancer. We have strict aesthetic principles. I'm afraid there's no room for freedom here.

Her next move, out of necessity more than choice, was to join the band Failstate, who have been praised by NME for "the intensity of their lyrics (I've got a problem in my head / So I'm just gonna lay in bed). Fuck Andrew Motion, this is the poetry of the modern youth. Failstate are made of WIN".

Their career ended just three weeks later when NME decided to throw its full weight behind a nascent grindcore revivalist scene emerging in the Bispham area of Blackpool ("Blackpool Rocks!"), proclaiming "feckless, unreconstructed indie-rock" (such as that made by Failstate) dead. Pitchfork, sadly, never took an interest.

What choice, then, has the Feared Pirate Moll Frichter? What choice but to return to piracy, with ever greater zeal, with a fire burning in her belly, with a rage that torments her waking hours and gnaws at the edges of those that should be spent sleeping?

O art world, what hast thou wrought? Now a darkness is laid upon this land. Now the air is thick with dread, from which there is no shelter, no sanctuary. Now heads hang low, trust and fellowship unaffordable luxuries. 20 miles tall stands Moll Frichter, and all live in her shadow.

O art world, your expectations, your whims, your arbitrary norms - these things are anathema to art's practitioners, who long for a freedom otherwise denied. Moll Frichter is your creation, art world. And she's your greatest yet, well done, I love it! So powerful.

Monday, 5 March 2012

Free Me From The Tyranny Of The Beat

Today we shall be talking about choices.

Theme tune
Choices for me, choices for you,
So many kinds of choices that we can do.
Do you choose evil, or do you choose good,
Or do you, like most people, tend to make your moral decisions on an ad hoc basis, balancing your desired outcome against whatever ethical concerns you may have, where conflicts occur? (eg, "I take a strong stance against vivisection. However, I also have a serious illness. Do I take these life-saving drugs, knowing that they've been tested on animals, or do I sacrifice my own life on a point of principle? Which option has the greater benefit
(I survive the illness/I die, albeit with a clean conscience) after accounting for its cost (I am slowly ground to dust by self-loathing/I die, albeit with a clean conscience)?")

Here is a famous example of a dilemma. A bus pulls into a station (not a major one, really just a concourse in a built-up commercial area, such as a city centre or suburban entertainment complex - a bowling alley, a multiplex cinema, an acceptable Tex-Mex chain restaurant).

The bus is driven by noted pirate hunter Rear Admiral Holpous Quigg, and waiting at the stop is the Feared Pirate Moll Frichter, who - presumably enjoying a day off - carelessly climbs aboard without first taking steps to identify the driver. Quigg promptly arrests her and has his clerk see to the administrative particulars.

As he is about to pull away, Quigg - a fastidious sort - takes a moment to check his wing mirror for approaching traffic. He sees another bus, driven - if you can believe this shit - by the Feared Pirate Moll Frichter, who sees him in turn and speeds away. What the actual fuck?

Thinking his prisoner has escaped, Quigg orders all hands on deck and is about to give chase when his first mate points to their charge, still in irons and sitting passively on the back seat.

At first baffled, Quigg soon reasons that he has inadvertently arrested a future iteration of Frichter, who exists just a few minutes ahead of her present self.

What should Quigg do? The future Frichter is guilty of the same crimes as her slightly younger counterpart, but as she is not of our time, she cannot technically be held culpable in the present. It is likely that only Quigg would ever be aware of the true nature of her capture, but he will have broken the laws of both man and physics, which would no doubt lead to some fucked-up shit. If, on the other hand, he seizes his moment and arrests the Frichter of his own dimension, he will be transgressing an unwritten but nonetheless sacred maritime code forbidding the arrest of more than one copy of any given pirate within a 24-hour period. You will have heard this type of dilemma referred to as Quigg's quandary.

Some clever dicks often point to a tacit third option: simply let both Frichters go. But they are, frankly, pissing into the wind, as this age-old conundrum is, in fact, a trick.

Attentive readers may recall that the paperwork has already been completed and faxed over to the nearest port authority. Quigg therefore has no choice but to drive back to the depot with his prisoner exactly as described in the report: "1 qty. Feared Pirate Moll Frichter, appearing very slightly older than expected."

But wait now, let us consider this in more detail. Because if the Frichter from the present managed to escape... then she is, at this very moment, a free woman... which effectively negates her future arrest, which is now in the past... meaning...

Our hero's shoulders droop as he looks forlornly to the empty back seat. Ah sorry, old Quigg, I fear that you are shit out of luck! No doubt there shall be a great many questions for you to answer upon your return to St. Kitts.

Hey, I don't make the rules. Don't have a go at me.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Gang Gang Dance

GCSE Bitesize: History
with Exam Master Jay

We all know what's going to happen in June. That history exam will be just days away and you'll be freaking out because you've spent the whole of your study leave wanking on acid. But hey - it's cool, G! It's cool. Exam Master Jay understands. He's down.

With GCSE Bitesize, we'll have you up to speed in no time. So come on, gang, let's just chillax and we'll breeze through this bad mother. Hey, why don't we do it all in our underwear? You know, just to loosen up the vibe and shit. It's no big deal, right?

- - - - -


Now, the most important thing to remember about history is that there are no right or wrong answers, so don't worry. The entire history of our world as we understand it could be a complete lie for all we know. All we have to go on are the waffle of historians and whatever documents have survived the ravages of time and the purges of dominant powers.

It's often said - usually by drab, uninteresting people - that history is written by the victor. But in the twisting and shimmying of global politics, such things are rarely so clear-cut. What if there is no outright winner? What if both sides go home declaring victory, each accusing the other's pronouncements as spin or revisionism? Two histories are written, oh noes! Which do we believe? And Christ alone knows how many twigs will sprout from these two distinct branches, flowering and spitting seeds over the topsoil of time. Before you know it, there are trees all over the fucking place and you're confused and hopelessly lost, trapped in a forest of conflicting testimony!

And no-one even thinks to mention those tiny, seemingly insignificant accidents of fate which conspire to direct the course of events. The earache that rendered an experienced and highly regarded lieutenant oblivious to his comrades' efforts to alert him to the appearance of a sniper in a nearby window. Or the losses at the card table which inspired in one soldier a rage so fearsome it brought down eight of his opponents in a single battle.

If there's any justice (and I'm not saying there is, so don't you dare hold me accountable for what might happen if you should act on the following advice), you'll get an A* just for writing: "history is bullshit; a convenient narrative distilled from the Gordian complexities of reality to support academics' hypotheses and their governing ideologies. There is no such thing as truth. Fuck the Queen."

- - - - -


Now you just go and groove on through those exams. You'll groove on straight to Passville. And if any of you tells anyone about this, I will fucking damage you. Okay?

Monday, 13 February 2012

Thelonious Monk

INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE
Thanks awfully for purchasing Thelonious Monk WishFucker Deluxe. Your only regret will be that you didn't do it sooner!

Your hopes and aspirations once propelled you. They drove you like a drill bit through the walls of shit and used needles that sprang up from the jagged outcrops of life's bitter wastes. They were your motor, your fuel, your satellite navigation system.

But as the rainbow's end, they remain ever in the distance. Now they taunt you, nag you, scratch-tickle your exposed areas like the rough, callused fingers of a large, bearded woodsman called Knut. Your fantasies have turned against you. You have cancer of the dreams. "Turn around when possible."

Imagine: your ambition as a hollow-point bullet coming towards you in slow-motion. At first it thrills you, stirs you, impels you to act. As it hits you in the gut it begins to expand, shattering your ribcage and ripping through your vital organs, exploding as it passes through, destroying your pancreas and large intestine, snapping your spine like a dry twig and leaving an exit-wound the size of a miniature haggis. Once a tantalising vision on the horizon, now it is behind you. You are twisted, half-paralysed. You spend the rest of your life crawling on your belly, cursing your own desires. What kind of sick individual would want this for themselves?

Allow us to tell you a story. Remove yourselves from the present and find a comfortable place to sit in the early 19th century. An ageing patriarch of a powerful family - we'll call him Cornsplice - wanted keenly for his son to produce a male heir. Well, he got his wish, a strapping young man named Papilloma, so let's say no more about that. However, Papilloma was unable to produce a male heir of his own, much to his grandfather's distress (these were less enlightened times, remember; let's be thankful that all these people are now dead). So Cornsplice elected to take matters into his own hands by seducing his granddaughter-in-law with a view to fathering Papilloma's heir himself - so warped had he become in his longing - realising only too late the folly of his actions.

The resulting child became Papilloma's father, and Cornsplice's own son - Pizok - was subsumed. This is what becomes of the man who allows himself to dream. Yea, hope is the father of despair.

So why wait a moment longer? A life lived in anticipation is a life lived in torment. Thelonious Monk WishFucker Deluxe can help you to abandon your strivings and submit to fate. Simply switch it on, expel any excess fluids, then lie back and pray:

Lord,
Why did you create us?
We are not meant to be.
Consciousness is our undoing.
A species aware of its own mortality,
Tortured by events not presently unfolding.
You are a cruel and sadistic god,
Delighting in the suffering of your children,
You twisted motherfucker.
Amen.

Now get ready to experience a sense of peace long denied the modern human. Once the light's gone green, you've let go of your dreams!

Monday, 6 February 2012

Chris Morris

Chris Morris' Precious Moments

"Professor, I must congratulate you. With a small but dedicated team of technicians, and over the course of just eight short years, you researched and produced a reliable Aids vaccine. In just a generation, this hitherto unstoppable virus will be but a memory. This is an historic moment. Your name shall reverberate through the ages, one of an elite few who changed the world for the better through science. Today you have transcended mere mortality and become something closer to... a god. By the way, did you know you've shit yourself?"

- - - - - -


"Ambassador. With your tireless commitment, your easy charisma and your good looks, you have achieved what many would never have dreamt possible. You have brokered peace between all the major players of the Middle East. Where once was tension, distrust and outright war, there is now bonhomie, understanding and genuine human warmth. Through global politics' treacherous seas, you have steered the course of history to safety. There is no award for your great work, no commendation that would be any less than a gross insult. The world salutes you. Oh, and sorry, I couldn't help noticing... is that piss all down the front of your pants?"

- - - - - -


"Prime minister, you have neutralised the greatest threat mankind has ever known. Thanks to your diplomacy, ingenuity and your rugged, sweaty willingness to dirty your own hands through hard physical graft, the whole world is now effectively carbon neutral. They said it couldn't be done, much less through politics, but you showed the way. All other world leaders, now and generations from now, shall look to you as a model for what can be achieved by politicians, a word which you have surely rescued from stigma, as you have rescued the human race from self-destruction. And prime minister, I hope you don't mind me asking, but have you got jizz all over your sleeve?"

"Why yes, it seems that I have."

"Wow. Looks great!"

"Well, thank you! Now, why don't you all sing along at home?"

(Slowly, with feeling)
Oh, precious moments fill my heart with gladness,
When all I want is to be left in sadness.
Take away your smiles, and bury all your joy.
Your laughter is not welcome here, I'm weeping for the boy

I used to be. So innocent and pure,
And blissfully unaware of what life had in store:
A world full of horror, futility and madness...
Those damned infernal precious moments fill my heart with gladness.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Hudson Mohawke

Speaker's Corner with Hudson Mohawke
If there's one thing I love, it's communication. But did you know that people communicate in different ways all over the world? These are some fun linguism facts that you can read!

Mind Your Language!
Some cultures certainly know how to do an insulting! (These are not for the easily offended!)
Spain
Your mother has never been born!

Iran
When you bend over, an obscure early rhythm & blues recording goes out of copyright!

Chile
Every time I fuck your sister, it is as if I am in the occult section of an old, dilapidated library. I look over to my left and I see an old man sitting there, naked, with his feet on the chair and his knees wide apart. His shrivelled balls hang uselessly, dessicated, like deflated leather balloons, it is quite disgusting. He has no cock. He fixes me with his eyes, sharp eyes, redolent of an ancient evil, older than the earth itself, and I feel a terror like all the terror in the universe is concentrated within my being. It is as if I am a nexus for all the terror that ever existed. However, I do not feel this way when I fuck your uncle!

Lost In Translation!
Though hilarious in their own languages, some foreign jokes just won't translate into English! Here are some of my favourites...
Japan
The young lady wishes for a new dress. Perhaps this young gentleman will buy her one!

Germany
My father was supposed to build a fence, but instead he gave birth to an elk with human feet.

Poland
A woman walks into the bar. Her elbow reminds you of an elbow that used to belong to a friend of yours, Piotr. It was taken from Piotr several years ago when he was mugged during a weekend city break in Copenhagen. Even now, he lies awake at night thinking about his elbow. Is it safe? Is it happy? He has changed since the incident. He was once very charismatic, confident and outgoing, good at his job (he is a forensic accountant), but now he rarely goes out and he is being sidelined at work. So you turn to the woman and say, "those are nice shoes, I'd like to eat them!" Slowly, she looks you up and down, then finally she says, "why the long face?" It is at this point that you look into a nearby mirror, and you see that you have become a bishop.

Did You Know..?
Curiously, every word in John Lennon's hit Imagine exists in the tongue of the Crimean Tatars, though the meanings could not be more different!

Lennon's record label Apple cleverly decided to take advantage of this quirk by shooting an alternative version of the promotional video especially for the Crimean market, to convey the lyrics as they would be understood.

The video features Lennon driving his white piano like a tank around northwestern Asia, conquering it territory by territory for Crimea. As the song reaches its climax, Yoko Ono appears in the form of a harpy and perches on Lennon's outstretched arm as the Red Banner burns behind them. It has only ever been seen by twelve people. Since 1993, ten of them have been murdered.

I fear I may be next, and so I intend to go underground for the foreseeable future. See you soon, language lovers!

Hudson will return when greater stability comes to the North Caucasus

Monday, 23 January 2012

Django Bates

He takes a stool at the counter of the diner. His overalls are covered in oil and sin. Can't stand it. As he puts down his coffee mug he sees oily fingerprints streaked across white ceramic. Looks down - greasy brown daubs like mud craters litter the surface of the counter. Scanning the diner he sees people eating and talking, unaware that this powerful cinematic symbol of his failings covers their clothes, their faces, their food, the furniture the walls the windows oh my God I can't do this anymore. I can't keep it down: "THE TIME HAS COME FOR THIS TO BE OVER NOW!"

The people look up: "holy shit, that is one angry mod shop guy!"

Django Bates: Angry Mod Shop Guy.


But what's this? A police officer bursts through the door, discharges his pistol three times - once a bang, twice a bang, three times a bang. Bang bang bang. Django Bates falls back against the counter, dead.

That was me, three months ago - Django Bates, car modification technician. And yes, I'm dead. But how did I get here? What brought me to this place, this dead place?

"When I was a kid, that was all I wanted to be, a car modification technician. Now I'm a car modification technician and I can't fuckin' stand it. Where did I go wrong?"

"You just need to dig deep and rediscover the child within, Django."

I used to sit with my dad in the garage and watch him fixing up vehicles. He was the best in the area. All the guys from the neighbourhood would come in to request his services.

"Hey, Bates. I want this fuckin' van tricked out so I can fuck bitches in back, alright? Do it or I'll shoot you in the ass."

"Eh yo, Bates - I wanna big old fuckin' cannon on the roof that fires dildos at people. Think you can do that? You better, or I'll shoot you in the ass."

"I want this car stripped down to the fuckin' chassis and rebuilt with a fuckin' buffalo carcass, you got me? Don't make me shoot you in the ass."

I wasn't interested in school, girls or sports. Most days I cut classes to go hang out on my own at the car park and try to pimp people's motors without anyone seeing. Couple times I got caught and hauled in front of the principal.

"This boy's obsession with cars will be his undoing, you mark my words. Is there no room in his heart for love?"

After I finally got out of school I went to work in a local mod shop for a guy called Al. Al had become the best in the area after my dad was shot in the ass when I was 14.

"Eh, kid. You're pretty good with these cars. But you work too damn hard, son. Don't you gonna find time to live once in a while?"

"Hey, fuck you."

Still, I managed to meet a girl, Yolanda. We got a house, had a kid, and I took over the mod shop after Al was shot in the ass. And that was where I spent all my time. Didn't even see my kid, Martin, or Felicity, something like that, I dunno. Well, Yolanda got tired of me not being around so she quit town with the kid. I'm not too sure when. Think it was a few months before I noticed. I found a faded, yellowed letter on the kitchen table: "Dear Django, I love you, but I can't be with you until you stop messing around with cars and start realising what's really important. I'm sorry."

Well, that was it. I sold the house and moved into the mod shop, and that was all I did, modify cars, day and night. And I hated it. I hated every fuckin' minute of it. But I couldn't stop, oh no. No, I did it because I had to. Because I just didn't know what else to do.

"Man, that mod shop guy, he knows his shit, but motherfucker don't sleep no more. Don't even go in there, he's crazy."

"Stop! In the name of the law, I command you to stop!"

Bang.

Bang.

Bang.

And this is where you came in, and I started to tell you my story, which I've just told you. And I've finished now. So hey - you better learn the lessons I didn't. Be safe.

Don't let your life end in farce.
Spend too much of it messing around with cars,
You too could get shot in coffee bars.
(It might even happen up your arse.)

That was a public service announcement from the British Council for Responsible Car Modification

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Me Me Me Me Me

We've got a real treat here to kick off the new year - the creator of Scurferens has agreed to this very special interview.

Scurferens. If anyone had ever heard of it, it would probably be known as 'the blog that nobody reads'. Why bother?
Yes, well, when I first started writing Scurferens back in '10, I wanted to do something a bit different. There were plenty of blogs out there that were supposed to be funny, but weren't. So I thought it might be an interesting idea to do a blog that looked like it was supposed to be funny, but wasn't, but actually wasn't supposed to be that funny anyway.

It wasn't an interesting idea.
I know that.

But hats off, you set out to write an unfunny blog, and you succeeded. Then, some time in 2011, you managed to make it even less funny. What was going on there?
Well, basically, no-one was reading, no-one cared. I'd grown tired of trying to figure out what people wanted, so I decided to start telling them. You see, the thing is, I'm not an entertainer. It's not my job to entertain people. I'm a serious artist.

For me, art is a conversation. But it's a conversation in which I talk and you shut up. People think conversation is supposed to be entertaining, but conversation's only as entertaining as the people involved, and most people are purely functional. And so conversation is really more of an ordeal, a humiliating dance we have to do in order to overpower others and gain access to their resources or whatever.

In the conversation of Scurferens, you are gaining access to my resources, and my resources are the educations of all of you by me. Education isn't entertainment, it's more like medicine. And medicine isn't supposed to taste good. Show me a medicine that tastes good.

I quite like a nice honey & lemon cough syrup.
Yes, but cough syrup isn't a real medicine, is it? It's just a drink. It doesn't really work. If you want to get rid of a cough, the most effective way to do it is to eliminate the source, by removing the lungs. That's what they teach you in the SAS. And that's what I'm trying to do - I'm removing the lungs of society. And I'm holding them up to society's face. And I'm saying: "look. Look what you've made me do." That's powerful.

The towns and villages of Ancient Greece, they had a figure, called the Maniakós. Now, he usually lived in a cave up on a hill at the edge of town, and once a week the citizens would walk up to the top of the hill, and throw stones into the cave. And the Maniakós would run out, barking and swearing and making all manner of strange gestures, and the villagers would run away back down the hill, fast as they could, laughing their heads off. Occasionally, he'd catch and eat one of them. So as much as they enjoyed this ritual, there was real fear there. And they needed that fear. It made them feel alive. And that's who I want to be. I want to be the Maniakós for a new generation. I want to inspire fear. With fear you can... [he pauses, supposedly to collect his thoughts, although I suspect he's trying to be dramatic] control people.

I need it, that will to power, to keep me alive. Like those people needed the Maniakós, like the Maniakós needed them. If he hadn't that function to perform he'd have been kicked to death. The Maniakós was like the queen bee. Or the Highlander. There could be only one. Once the role was assigned, all others perished.

It doesn't matter that I'll never acquire this power. It never matters, not to the blogger. In the blogger's mind, he or she is addressing the entire population of the internet. But the reality is more like a recitation of adolescent poetry in an abandoned workshop or outhouse, empty but for the detritus of a stranger's life. What's the deal with this cat mask? Look at these amusing photos of people in stupid clothes. Except they're not stupid anymore because a generation of hipsters has modelled its look on them. Hey, there's a 1981 issue of Fiesta at the bottom of this box! I'm going to scan the cover later and write something pithy to accompany it.

The blogger is a tragic figure.

Great stuff. So, what can we expect from Scurferens in 2012?
Probably just more of the same old shit. Or if you're lucky, I might run out of ideas some time in April and just let the weeds grow. I expect I'd try to style it out at first - "Scurferens is going fortnightly from now on because I'm busy or something, I don't know." I'd do it like that, I think, be all flippant about it. But really, I'd be wracked with self-hatred and terror. Though no-one else would even notice it's gone. This is what blogging does to you. It's pathetic. I mean, it's just a fucking hobby, isn't it?

Am I really any better than a 48-year-old man called Malcolm, who has an elaborate train set in his attic? Who, every evening - every single fucking evening - gets dressed up as a 1950s engine driver and spends two whole hours making his stupid little plastic trains go round and round and round and round and round. His kids hate him. They won't bring friends round. Rita, his wife, she can't bear to be touched by him. While he's upstairs with his trains, she's on the internet, desperately trying to get laid. But she can't, you know why? Because no-one wants her. No-one wants her because she doesn't have hair, or a face. It's just smooth, all round, top to bottom. She has a tube coming out of her neck that allows her to breath, and another one for food. Only Malcolm would have her. But she's still a woman, you know? She still has needs. And she deserves more than this... fucking... man-child. Do you know he's never made her come?

How awful.
This woman is trapped. Trapped in that smooth pebble of a head and in her miserable, sexless life, if you can call it a life, with Malcolm. Malcolm has Oedipal issues. I don't really want to talk about Malcolm anymore, can we change the subject?

Thanks for speaking to us.
It's been a pleasure.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Scurferens

"Why do people lie, Dad?"

"People lie because they don't care, Son. They lie because they don't care..."

That thing I said about Scurferens returning today. Well, I've been sick. Back next week.