Avatar One from the Archives – ‘You Don’t Weep’

(A cynical young man sits at a table judging, that’s you (Kevin), and two men walk past).

Chris: Look at that cynical young man there.
Ian: What’s he doing?

(Intense close-up of your (Kevin’s) face)

Chris: He’s judging fruit because even though it carries qualities that can assist with a sexy, varied diet, too much can still mess with your face podge.
Ian: Oh, THAT!
Chris: STOP JUDGING FRUIT, INFANT!
Kev: Leave me alone, let me judge in peace.
Ian: But don’t you realise that fruit doesn’t mean you any harm? It doesn’t have a hidden agenda.
Chris: It’s not out to get you.
Kev: I don’t care! Not enough people *cannot read what the bottom line says due to bad photocopying*
Ian: Look at the beauty of that lemon! It’s perfectly cylindrical, it’s smoothness, it’s balance of danger and sweetness. Doesn’t it make you want to…
Kev: CRY? No. NEVER!
Chris: Surely it must, sir. You are no golem.
Kev: No. I never cry.

(Shock horror: SEVERE GASP)

Ian: He doesn’t cry.
Chris: This imbalance will be bad, awful, awful bad.
Ian: Care to explain with the use of this delicate pulley system?
Chris: No. Follow me.

(Ian and Chris walk offscreen to a white board)

*Presumably Chris is talking* Man. Man doesn’t want to cry but he does. He has to or this happens.

(An explosion goes off)

Ian: What was that?
Chris: That’s what happens when you try to fuck with nature.
Ian: Oooooooooooooooooooooooo.
Chris: To put it like this, if man does not cry, the emotional chumblies vibrate and vibrate. If liquid is not spilt then they catch fire and the whole body explodes.
Ian: Science is mean!
Chris: It sure is, Timmy.
Ian: It’s Ian.
Chris: Okay.

(Back to Kevin) (?)

Ian: So this man needs to cry.
Chris: Exactly.
Ian: So how do we do that?
Chris: If science can cause a perfectly healthy individual to explode then science can also be harnessed for good.
Ian: Holy pickles!
Chris: What we need is…

(Quick shots: plunger, onions, copy of the film ‘Steel Magnolias’)

Then all we need to do is…

(Chris plungers the side of Kev’s head, then he rubs onions into his eyes, lastly he shows him a copy of ‘Steel Magnolias’ on the telly)

Ian: It sounds easy.
Chris: It’s already done (close up of Chris) Romeo Dunne.

(The cynical man is sat crying at his table)

Chris: Oh dear.
Ian: What’s wrong with him?
Chris: It appears as though the science was too much for him. He’s been turned into a jibbering idiot.
Ian: Is that why he’s sat crying over some knives?
Kev: (between sobs) They just… don’t get the same respect… as forks. It’s so upsetting.
Chris: We may need to think about this some more. He’s gone from one extreme to the other. I expect if you hold anything up in front of him he’ll cry even harder.

(Ian holds up a yo-yo, Kev weeps harder)

Ian You were right.
Chris: We need MORE SCIENCE!

(Quick shots: plunger, iron pipes, a copy of ‘Universal Solider’)

Chris plungers back tough back (?) into Kevin’s head, sticks the pipes down his back).

Chris: Not too much ‘Universal Solider’, Timmy, we don’t want him as cynical as he was before.
Ian: Ten four.

(Kev sits at a table)

Ian: How do you feel?
Kev: I’m not sure. I’m a little teary (pulls a face) but I’m also extremely pissed off at this Kinder Egg. The toy on it is crap.
Ian: Is that a result?
Chris: I guess it’ll have to do!

(Both Ian and Chris freeze in mid-hearty chuckle. Kev falls off his chair)

EPILOGUE

Chris: Crying is perfectly natural. Everyone does it, even pigeons and wolverines. They don’t do it in public but hidden behind those bushes and up on those high buildings they are bawling like bitches.
Ian: Here’s a tip, cry into a towel. It muffles the noise and catches the excess, thus removing the need for tissues.
Chris: Thank you, Timmy.
Ian: How often do you cry, sir?

(close-up of Chris’ face)

Chris: TWICE A DAY. THAT’S WHAT I SAY!

END!

Avatar Beans: questions and mysteries – ‘Kevbeard’

It’s a new year and it’s time for a fresh ‘chude too. There has been a lot of fan mail recently asking questions about us, inquisitive and rather personal questions, so rather than respond to each and every person I have decided to answer the letters on here because it also gives me a scrumptious post towards my bean count. THAT and you know there were letters with duplicate questions so I’m not going to be a hack and start photocopying letters like some cheap so and so and then sign the bottom as if they’re all original, genuine articles. There are standards to be upheld, you know.

People (and by “people” I mean the two people who somehow managed to obtain my personal address) keep asking me, “what’s the deal with Kevin and his facial hair?”

“Where is it?”

“Does it live in a shoe by the back door?”

Calm down, I said, then pummelled a glass of Bichon Frisé and two slices of toast. Let me set the record straight before all you conspiracy nuts chase me down.

It’s all very simple and wholesome when you know the truth. Yes, it does exist. Kevin has the most wonderful, most bountiful, more buxom beard out of all three of us. He has been growing it since the late 90’s and to this day refuses to pass on his cultivation techniques. Many a time have I plied him with brandy and sought the secrets of his grooming (steady now) abilities and no matter how many bottles I tip down his throat he will not relinquish the goods. Though I may be a little sour of note, I do appreciate the moxie shown by this young man to keep steadfast his confidentialities.

Kevin chooses not to wear his beard in public because it would attract unwanted attention. In the early days when beards were still scorned by the general population he would occasionally bring it out on a lovely summer’s morn. If it were quiet the sun would glow and it would pulse like a rabbit in a hutch filled with alfalfa. His little face would fill with delight to feel the rays, the cool breeze blowing through his bristles, he looked like a young Grizzly Adams. The modern world has taken a shine (no pun intended) to a man’s face candy so there is no chance for any such displays anymore. When the heat got too much, Kev put his beard on a barge to Malta and there it lives in a stunning villa on the West coast. He visits thrice a year, sometimes more if his schedule will allow it.

To catch a glimpse of Kev and his beard would be a rare treat indeed. I get several lucrative offers from the paparazzo every year to disclose the location of the villa so they can but for one moment capture the beauty of the beard and each time I turn them down. Holster your wallets, I say, I cannot be bought. There are more important things than money. We could all learn a lot from Kevbeard (not a pirate however could also be a pirate name).

Avatar ABOFB 33: Disappointing Things

After only 9 months since the last episode, and because Ian made me feel bad for that fact, here comes episode 33!
I’ve dredged out from the lockdown archives this gem, where we discuss:

  • Gigs
  • Gruff Rhys
  • Ignoring the question
  • Food

Avatar A list of thanks

It’s been another year, a year with a lot to be thankful for. As I look around my empty living room whilst writing this post, I imagine all the people that have helped me in the year 2023 as well as those that I have offered my help to. Some of them are smiling, some of them are waving, some of them are wondering why I’ve materialised in their kitchen and they’re trying to waft me away like I’m a bad smell or a pernickety bird who accidentally got in through the window. What a lovely image.

Before we reach the end of December I wanted to offer up a list of thanks to those that have done the most for me. In no particular order, here’s that list (because if I didn’t give you it then none of this would make sense):

  1. Kev – it goes without saying that Kev has contributed so much to the website by not actually adding very much. Confused? Very. There comes a time in the month when you feel as though two posts is your absolute limit and no matter what you do no other ideas will come to the surface. Maybe you can scrape another one but that’s all you’ve got left. Sadness. Melancholia. You strive to reach that four posts per month and sometimes you can’t. Then you look at how many rancid peas Kev has and all of a sudden you’re writing a paragraph about bookends that look like puffins and searching for pictures of sea salt. It’s the most uplifting thing. Thanks, Kev.
  2. Calendar – every day calendar is there for me. Every day calendar delivers the goods. When I wake up in the morning calendar provides me with a little look into the past and it’s almost always excellent (apart from the ones I can’t remember and without context make very little sense).
  3. The man in the charity shop – he’s always cheerful and chatty and knows the kinds of film and music I like. I think he predicts if I’m going to want a particular blu-ray and puts it out in the shop because he’ll ask me if I picked up so and so either when he’s serving me or the next time he sees me. He also handed me a massive anime boxset because I was wearing a Cowboy Bebop t-shirt. Class.
  4. Preston Vanderslice – a name so ridiculous it cannot possibly exist, right? Wrong! It does exist and belongs to this guy who’s in a few Hallmark Christmas films. As soon as I saw it I couldn’t stop laughing. It’s almost a Matt Berry ‘Toast of London’ name. His acting is fine, I’m sure he’s a lovely guy but with a name so posh it should have a street in Covent Gardens it’s going to be a winner every time. Vanderslice raises a huge smile.
  5. Crème Brûlée – up until this year I don’t think I’d ever eaten one. When Vikki and I were away in Norway the boat was serving these in a particular restaurant every day. It was a crema Catalana, orange and lemon-scented Catalan-style Crème Brûlée. It may have contributed towards some of the weight gain from that holiday yet it was totally worth it. I cannot put this into my mouth quick enough.

Thank you one and all. Now go away because I say so.

Avatar Where has Kev been?

You know the deal, I disappear for a while, then I come back full of beans then disappear again. Its a story as old as time. Well this time you may be forgive for thinking that I’d just been too busy doing a masters degree or looking after kids or some other made up nonsense, well no. Not this time.

For the last 5 and a bit months I have in fact been trapped down the character hatch. I know, I know, you’ve both told me to leave it shut, but sometimes the curiosity gets too much for me.

Now those of you with a keen memory may remember the last time I went down there, got stuck and was abandoned by Ian who was too busy demanding ham I had no means to provide. You’d think I’d have learned my lesson, but no. I opened the hatch (with a pack of ham in my bag just in case) and sank down into the Old Beans.

I spent a few hours wandering through the ornamental gardens, had a picnic by the Zorse monument and whiled away another hour or two doing a sketch of the bell tower in charcoal. The tower’s looking in quite bad shape these days, and you can just make out the corpse of a recently deceased zorse leaning against a wall.

Anyhow, I was just about to come back home when I heard that sound… you know the one… The sound of moody guitars, breaking glass and arty poetry that could only mean… Pete Doherty. He spotted me immediately, he had the mad faraway glint in his eye of a man who’d been forced to exclusively eat zorse meat for 13 years, and he was pissed. In both senses. I think he’d worked out how to distill zorse piss into a kind of hooch. Anyway after chasing me round the great hall, the gardens, across the old Loinsford campus and back to the clock tower he eventually caught me and pressganged me into forming a new band with him and doing a tour of the forbidden lands, (the Cockall Archives, the Saint Kingdom and the Savannah of in-jokes).

The band was just us two, and all I could play was the recorder and the demo button on the keyboard. It was awful. Pete wrote some witty satirical lyrics about Ian’s love of ham and the fall of Chris Industries, and off we went. We played 700 gigs, mostly to empty rooms. Occasionally the zorses would come by, and then quickly leave, but mostly to empty rooms.

For whatever reason, when we returned, Doherty was sated. His anger subsided, the punching stopped and he just wandered off into the mist surrounding in the Loosh Vestibule. I was free. I made my escape and resealed the hatch. I’ve learned my lesson (for now), and I’m back. Hopefully.

Avatar Nish lives on

I decided I was too “hairy on the go” and needed to cut down on a bit here and there. The most obvious place was the top of my head so I decided to go for a haircut.

Modern life dictates that if you do not have a preferred barber or hairdresser then you have to choose the one that’s most convenient for you. I have tried a number of places over the last few years and can’t quite settle on one. They’re all fine, nothing out of the ordinary, nothing too special to go back to though (apart from the one where they gave me lots of coffee and made a huge fuss over my haircut however it cost twice as much as usual). There are two barbers near my work so I opted to walk past both of them, gauge how many customers were in each and select the one that was the quietest.

I meandered into the barbers with a queue of one and a half in front of me (the half was already in the chair and almost done by my eye but then spent another ten minutes having very little to nothing done to his bonce) and took a seat next to a glass cabinet of hair supplies and accessories.

It was a warm day so I stared nonchalantly out the door and around the room. It was then that my attention was immediately brought to the collection of items a little above my eyeline:

There it was. Nish Man hairspray.

In my mind what happened is that our mythical status grew and grew so much that we spread to the outer parts of Europe and Asia. There a large group of Turkeys (Turkians, Turkish? Turkpeoples) decided that in order to spread the word of how talented and funny we were, they turned us into an aerosol. I know it’s not the greatest explanation but what were you expecting, really? It’s me here, everyone.

It’s a legacy of some kind I suppose and one that will make your hair a good hair. I had a look and there are other products available for all your grooming needs including wax, hair wax, hair on wax hair, volume powder, styling powder, hair on wax powder, eye gel, eyebrow powder wax and strong fixative yellow.

Now available in all good barbershops.