Avatar Episode 13: Ivy

Episodes is back with another cracking example. Yes, I know its been fucking ages, but what are you going to do about it?

This time out we ponder the evergreen topic of Ivy, specifically:

  • Sensual statues
  • A good view
  • Riding a pig
  • Deep personal psychoanalysis from Dr. Marshall

Avatar Five

It’s here! Many years late and all the more welcome for it, we now present The Official Book of London 2014, “#Chris30”. It is of course from the fateful time Kev and Ian came to see me in London for my birthday, and Kev wasn’t very well, but we still played dinosaur golf anyway.

It’s a rollercoaster of long-forgotten birthday emotion, featuring:

  • The invention of Smidge Manly
  • The David Craig Face Clock
  • Book #selfies
  • Tit tetris (titris)
  • Chris’s chunky ass
  • Sadsack’s sick sack

You can read it right now on the Books page or, if you don’t want to go via the Books page, you can read it by clicking exactly here.

Avatar Newsboost – It Was Actually Raining Men

Shock and confusion in the North West of England earlier on today when the most unusual of weather conditions hit a small town on the coast. Locals of Workington were treated to a freak downpour of men for half an hour around midday.

It initially brought to mind the 1982 hit by Australian music duo The Weather Girls, now fully realised and in 3D, except rather than the fun and bouncy pop song it actually resembled something from the mind of the late Iain Banks or possibly Clive Barker.

The first wave of men arrived around 12:11pm; they hit the ground pretty hard and died instantly. The high street was full of meaty chunks of what used to be men and young children with their parents watched as a long stream of blood drained past the local shops and down into the sewers. This was one instance where it was in your best interests not to get absolutely soaking wet. A few managed to cling to the sides of buildings and one was lucky enough to land on a church roof, waving frantically at nobody and scratching his crotch.

The second wave came a few short minutes afterwards. They were a bit more prepared and used the first wave as a cushion. There were still several injuries, sprains and lacerations but most of the men managed to hobble away mostly intact, muttering about hammers and how they miss the old car tax discs.

There was a pause of about five minutes before the third wave hit somewhere around 12:22. This sudden influx of middle-aged men was enough to send the townsfolk screaming back into their homes. Both receding and balding, overweight, unwashed and showing far too much flesh, they tried to buy a bag of apples using a fifty pound note only to be told by the fruit and veg stall owner that he didn’t have that much change on him. They all simultaneously tutted and wandered off, arguing over whose personalised licence plate was the best.

The last wave took everyone by surprise. It was believed that the third wave was the final one so when the pensioners arrived at 12:45pm people didn’t quite know what to think. If you’ve ever stared down a sky of wrinkly, sagging flesh, all spectacles and cod liver oil, the faint stench of dank filtering up your nostrils, then you’re a braver man than me. Half of them didn’t make it because the first wave had been cleared away by the Council so there was nothing left to soften the fall. The other half forgot what they were doing halfway through, turned around and flew back up into the sky.

“I have never seen anything like it before,” said Mavis Goggins, landlord of local tavern ‘The Shinty Knees’. “I have lived here for thirty five years and this is the first time we’ve ever had tourists.”

Scientists are yet to explain the bizarre meteorological phenomena. When asked for a comment about it they simply replied, “weasels.”

Science cannot make sense of everything, at least not yet.

Avatar The Last of You and Your Orb

Yes, you read correctly. I cannot keep handing out these dainty morsels for free. I have enough material for severalz volumez and will be on some kind of world tour of books soon enough. I’ll call it ‘The Very Soon Tour of Books Around the World’ and everyone will buy a ticket.

Until then let’s return to the gentle, simple world of orbs. I expect by now your orb will be ruminating around solid food. What on earth should you start with though? There’s only so many times you can discharge an electrical current into a glass of water and throw it at your orb. Eating together should be just as much a bonding experience as reading a book, watching television or stretching some weasels. If you believe your orb is ready, why not try them on a couple of watch batteries? You should not, repeat, not go straight to the C2 or the D2s because both of you are not ready for that. Slide a couple of lithium 2032s their way, let them sniff them and see what their general impression is. If they’re still a little cautious mix a few in with some mashed up strawberries and bananas so they get a taste of the good stuff.

By now I expect you’re used to locking all Velux windows and doors to ensure that your orb does not float out of your house. Should they be wanting to have some space you may wish to move them out of your bedroom and into a room of their own. Even if it is only a storage box in the cupboard under the stairs, their independence is as important as maintaining closeness. Encourage them to decorate their room as they see fit. Help put up posters of their favourite scientists: Nikola Tesla, Thomas Edison, Isaac Newton and other such cool dudes. Perhaps a hammock would be more appealing then a bed? That way they can still hover and be in comfort at the same time.

Your little orb is growing up so fast. What started off as a minor observation whilst over at a friend’s house has been stretched into, at least, four posts on this loose sack of shambles we call a website. You have everything you need now; live your lives as best you can.

You’re totally orbular!

Avatar Tenniversary

It’s been ten years since one of the most important cultural events of our, or anyone else’s, lifetimes. The Papples’ debut album, Wasting my Life, was released in May 2009 to a largely indifferent public.

To celebrate this milestone, Ian and myself made a pilgrimage to a number of sites on the south coast where the photos for the album sleeve were taken. We then recreated as many as we could find to mark this seminal tenniversary event. Join us, now, as we take you through all of the photos we recreated, slowly, one by one, whether you want to see them or not, like a distant relative showing you some old holiday photos.

Read More: Tenniversary »

Avatar My Chair Story

So here is a story I have been meaning to tell for a while. It is a story about my chair, a chair story if you will. The entire story is about a chair so if you’re looking for a tale about something else then I would advise you to jog on, like a couple of sea lions, because it ain’t happening sunshine.

Once I was a person without a chair and without some level of warning I became a one people with a chair. How chairs come into your life I cannot say. Sometimes you get given them, sometimes you find them in shops and they’re the right kind of sitting device, that perfectly compliment your own particular exterior, that you have to buy them or regret it for the rest of your life. So there I was, a young man with a chair, sitting like a sitting person should. It dawned on me though that despite the right level of comfort and chair-intensity that there was something missing.

Typical, right? “Oh the problem with your generation is that you are never satisfied. Look at everything you have and it is still not enough.” Whilst that is true, no matter what I did there was something gnawing at the back of my ears that I could not put my finger on. What was it that I needed? A god damn foot stool, that is what I needed. This chair needed the perfect companion though, I could not settle for any old Johnny two foot-putter.

Fast forward eight hundred years later. After developing the ability to not only halt my ageing process but also travel to the far reaches of space in my custom-built Grimmy 101 Space Hulk Meat Vestibule, I stopped getting older and flew to the end of the galaxy. It took a while, hence the 800 years. When I got there though I was vastly disappointed. Despite plenty of signs boasting about this and that there were absolutely no furniture shops, not even a charity shop with thirty copies of ‘Fifty Shades of Gray’ stacked up in the corner. My chair looked even more glum that my poor viso/volto did. I was about to flip the spinsh retractor into reverse when I noticed a rubbish tip at the end of the street. I had nothing to lose so I walked over, fearing the worst yet secretly hoping for the best.

There it was. It was staring me in the eyes (which pair of eyes I cannot recall), a footstool I could not recall every seeing in my extended life. Sure, it had taken 834 years to find it and it was worth waiting for. This the story of me and my chair, my chair story, and it’s also a little bit about a footstool. It’s my chair footstool science-fiction search story. I hope you enjoyed it.

Avatar More of You and Your Orb

Now that the shock of having an orb instead of a child has disappeared, you can settle into a routine that fits the both of you. Remember that you have to get used to your orb as much as he or she has to get used to you. You are not an easy person to live with and people do talk about you behind your back.

In order for your orb to understand how to behave around children and other orbs you may to take them out to a soft play facility. Here, kids and orbs of all ages run or hover around in well-crafted industrial buildings that nobody knew what to do with, panicked and then threw some padding on the floors. You can watch from the safety of the coffee shop, with your half-fat vanilla latte, whilst your little one floats in and out of tubes, ball pools and slides. You will also get to listen as other, more smug parents (more smugger or smuggents as they’re referred to) chunter on about how their child managed to get into Cambridge University based on the contents of their last nappy.

Maintain your distance whilst also keeping a close eye on them. This is one of those contradictions that you often see in parenting guides because really, deep down, nobody knows what they’re doing. You want your orb to make friends without you, ironically, hovering about behind them. And you certainly don’t want to one of those dads that follows their orb into the soft play facility and proceeds to comment on every single thing they do, and then convince them not to go down the big slide because it may be “a little too scary” for them. You’ll get a slap round the man nuggets for conduct like that.

Sometimes a float through the park is enough to keep them occupied. With the sun on your back and the fresh air coursing around your orb’s complex series of gas, emissions and chutney, they will appreciate the time you have spent together. Make sure to take plenty of photographs and decorate your orb’s room with memories you have made together.

If they burn a likeness of you into a piece of paper, put it up on the fridge for everyone to see. If they build a statue of you using pasta and PVA glue don’t go with your initial reaction and throw it in the bin; be sure to make a lot of noise about how great it is, put a picture on Facebook and then put it in the garage in the box with the rest of the tripe, or throw it out of the window of a moving car on the way to work the next morning. It’s much funnier that way.