Archive for March, 2010

Hospital food ‘mank’ – expert

March 31, 2010

The standard of food throughout Britain’s hospitals has been declared “mank” in a report compiled by a leading food expert yesterday.

Professor Peter Ian, who was recently an in-patient at Papworth Hospital in Cambridgeshire, said that food standards were “almost completely disgusting” and that “barely anything was edible” during his two-week admission.

According to the report, Papworth’s staple breakfast of porridge looked “like a dog had sicked up on my plate”, and “tasted like it, too”. Toast also fared badly, with the report describing how the bread had “never shown any trace of being placed near a toaster, let alone in one” and that the butter “spreaded less readily than a chunk of frozen cheese” causing the toast to “fragment like a piece of wet cardboard”.

Lunches fared no better, as the report slammed the “lack of viable alternatives to pre-packaged sandwiches”, together with the “abundance of tomatoes” in the majority of sandwiches served. Fruit also came under fire, as the report blasted how several items “looked like they’d been dropped more times than a whore’s knickers” and “tasted even worse”.

“I’ll tell you something,” the report continued, “you wouldn’t believe the shit they served up for dinner – honestly, it was completely mank” declared the report yesterday. “I’d have sooner starved, I really would. Good god, the evening meals were even more disgusting – I only ate them as my gut was starting to digest itself. The roast beef was like the loose bit of sole flapping about on my slipper and – you guessed it – tasted little better. I really wish I hadn’t needed a damn operation in the first place – next time, I’ll just take my chances,” concluded the report.

Professor Ian’s report has itself come under fire in another damning report, which blasted Ian’s report for containing “more tired-sounding similes than a Garry Bushell column” and that the attempted gags “stunk worse than the arse-crack of a bag of cheese and onion crisps”. The Milton Report, published just two hours after the results of Prof. Ian’s investigation claimed that the professor “bore a grudge as big as Rod Stewart’s ego”, and that his views were “as outdated and moth-eaten as the singer’s wallet”. The report concluded by asking: “Why, if the professor hated the food so much, did he not go out and buy a Macky D’s or something?”

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Radio switchover to leave millions indifferent

March 30, 2010

Experts have today warned that millions of analogue radio owners across the UK will experience feelings of indifference in five years’ time, due to the upcoming switchover to digital radio, which is set to take place in 2015.

It seems that the majority of the general public are either unaware of the plan or not in the remotest bit bothered, as the switchover was originally announced several years ago. It is feared that the wave of indifference caused by analogue radios no longer working could severely damage the UK’s economic recovery.

A spokesman for Solent Sound, home of Solent’s greatest music variety, believes the move will signal the death knell for many of the country’s regional commercial radio stations: “I think it will be a gradual death, as the public will slowly begin to realise they are unable to receive AM and FM stations in the car on their way to work. Most of them will shrug and either put on a CD or switch off the radio and start a bit of idle chit-chat with their fellow passengers. A small number of them will initially miss having some background noise to pass the journey, but eventually will occupy that void by having actual proper thoughts or by humming tunes to themselves.”

Peter Ian, a presenter on Power FM, Wolverhampton’s best music mix, agrees with this viewpoint, but stresses the need for local radio stations to adopt a proactive approach to stem the flow of listeners: “At the end of the day, local radio is there to serve the needs of its advertisers, so stations will need to bear this in mind, come 2015. What we’re planning to do is to maybe run a competition whereby listeners have to spot a particular Power FM car sticker and phone in with the vehicle’s registration. The winner would then receive a low-end digital radio.”

Car sticker phone-ins have formed the backbone on regional commercial radio for over 20 years, and are seen as a vital tool by many local stations in the battle for survival post-switchover. Steve Peake, who hosts Steve Peake’s Morning Wake-Up, in association with Parker’s Ford – Northampton’s most trusted and reliable Ford dealership offering unrivalled motoring comfort at unbeatable low prices, open Monday to Friday from 9am until 6pm and 1pm on Saturdays – take a test drive today, on Northampton Sound 96.4FM, home of the best music mix variety throughout the East Midlands, believes that car-sticker-spotting may not ultimately be enough to save many stations across the UK: “The problem will come as soon as listeners start winning these DAB radios – they’ll scan about for a few minutes and find that there’s, ironically, much more music variety than they’re used to and either their head will implode or they will simply start listening to other stations.”

Mahmood incites 235th celebrity crime

March 29, 2010

Champion undercover crime-monger and part-time journalist Mazher Mahmood is today celebrating his 235th celebrity scalp, after felling former boxing champion Joe Calzaghe by cunningly disguising himself as a cardboard box.

Mahmood’s notorious character, the so-called “Hoax Box” has fooled numerous celebrity figures over the years, prompting many of them to divulge their innermost and often criminal secrets. Mahmood’s box has even managed to tempt drunken and vulnerable celebrities to partaking in illegal activities they would hitherto not have considered.

“Calzaghe was a soft target,” admitted Mahmood yesterday. “He was already half-cut by the time I’d managed to fold the flaps down so that I could get in the door of the main bar area. That, and the fact that he’s obviously quite depressed due to his recent retirement from a sport which formed the basis of his entire life for the best part of 20 years. He was a pushover – I’d barely shuffled over to the lounge area and he immediately ambushed me, pouring out his heart about how empty his life was since he quit boxing. I told him there was nothing wrong with feeling like that, and that a lot of boxes often felt empty, too. I ordered him a few more drinks from the bar and listened intently as he admitted he needed something to “fill the void” in his life which would get his “adrenaline pumping”.

“I told him I had just the thing, and proceeded to reach through a hole in the side of my box and pour out a small portion of talcum powder across my lid. I then brought my other arm out to assist in forming the powder into a neat line. He looked puzzled and asked me why, if I was a box, did I have two arms? Quick-as-a-flash, I replied that I was a special magic box and that the powder would help him to feel happier. ‘If only there were some kind of way I could get that into my body’, he pondered. He needn’t have worried, though, as I immediately passed him a rolled-up banknote to enable him to take in the special powder. Little did he know I had a pap filming the entire thing, which I then used to force him into issuing a humiliating public confession, worded by the News Of The World.”

Mahmood has forged a career through a series of hilarious pranks, which have fooled many household names from showbusiness through to the royal family. His disguises often range from the absurd to the ridiculous, but one thing’s assured – Mahmood always gets his man (or woman). “I once bought a Sheik outfit from a fancy dress shop a few years back for a fiver. It was a really tacky appropriation of traditional Arabic clothing, and nothing like anything an Arabic man would actually ever wear, but I figured most people aren’t culturally aware enough to notice. I even bought a joke beard to go with it, which used to itch like crazy. I remember it slid down when I used it on Sven Goran Eriksson, but he didn’t bat an eyelid, even when I removed it entirely after the elastic snapped.

“My favourite, though, was when I dressed up as Scooby Doo to catch out Phil Mitchell from Eastenders. I figured it was apt, seeing as he was meant to be into dogging and all. Anyway, Phil had been at the bar all day – not surprising, seeing as his character is an alkie. By the time I strolled in on all-fours panting, he was too pissed to determine whether I was real or not and proceeded to tell me about how he bashed one off whilst watching a tranny through the window of a van during a holiday in France. I managed to record the whole thing on camcorder, too, and yep, you guessed it, took it straight into the News Of The World the very next morning. Screwed him out of £20,000 with that little beauty – let’s just say it was an Eastenders Christmas special which won’t be seeing the light of day anytime soon.”

Upon learning that he hadn’t, in fact, been speaking to an American cowboy, but an undercover reporter wearing a hat and an ill-fitting moustache, Mr. Mahmood replied: “Oh fuck…”

B&Q record record profits

March 25, 2010

Home difficulty giant B&Q have recorded record annual profits following a resurgence in people eventually getting round to doing a few bits and pieces around the house.

The store, which is famous for being three times as tall as it actually needs to be, enjoyed a 50% rise in adjusted pre-tax profits in the year to January 30th, compared with the same time last year.

A spokesman for the Kingfisher group, the retail giant who own the retail giant, revealed yesterday: “This has been an incredible year, there’s no doubt about it. We’re overjoyed with the way the public have taken B&Q into their hearts once again, and the record profit levels over the past year certainly serve to underline that.

“B&Q have always striven to provide excellent customer service and, despite having more members of staff in our adverts than throughout our actual stores, have consistently delivered this. Low staff levels are actually one of our strengths, and the fact we never employ more than 1 staff member per 10,000 square feet saves us millions compared to places like Asda or Homebase.”

Higher mark-ups have also played an integral part in the store’s success over the last twelve months, although Kingfisher’s spokesman insists the upturn in profits isn’t solely down to exercises in penny-pinching: “We wouldn’t want to give people the impression of austerity, as B&Q is a wonderful, vibrant place offering home improvement solutions for all. In fact, we have actually expanded our outdoor operations to include snack food provision for those leaving the store, with the intention of installing a burger van in every B&Q car park by 2012 – an idea which is already paying dividends throughout the southwest.

“Another thing we’ve done to raise the profile of our brand is to ensure we always build B&Q stores right next to Halfords. Customers come out of that store bewildered by the exorbitant prices and the smell of tyres, so by the time they get to B&Q they’re relieved by our comparatively sensible pricing structure, which just about offers value-for-money at a stretch. Also, the smell of burgers tends to lure most of them across the car park.”

FA appoints mystery man as acting Chief

March 24, 2010

The Football Association has broken tradition following the departure of former Chief Executive Ian Watmore and appointed a man of mystery as his replacement.

Very little is known about Watmore’s successor, although rumour has it he is his early-to-mid forties, of average height and can only be seen in the periphery as a faceless silhouette.

A spokesman for the FA said yesterday: “The board are excited to announce the official appointment of a man of mystery to the role of Chief Executive of the Football Association. We fully believe his lack of any discernable fingerprint, coupled with his ability to move throughout the world’s major cities completely undetected will stand him in good stead over the next nine months.

“We were so impressed with how quickly he operates and how briefly he lingers in the memory that we offered him the job on the spot. Well, not quite. We had to deliver the contract in a plain envelope to an unspecified location in the middle of the night. I think it might have been a disused warehouse or something, but I barely have any memory of it now. When I woke up the next morning, the contract was on my bedside table signed with a solitary ‘X’. Plus the window was open, which was strange, as we live on the fifth floor and I had definitely locked it the previous evening. Also, my wife had a glow about her and was unusually chipper for that time of the morning. Maybe she felt some relief at last, as she’d been as tense as I was over the last week or so.”

The mystery man, known only as “the shadow”, is thought to share the FA board members’ voracious appetite for extra-marital sex and reportedly celebrated his appointment by seducing a string of high profile women, including the wife of a current Premier League football manager. He will continue in the role until December – when the FA is due to find out if it has won the right to stage the World Cup in 2018 or 2022 – or until he is apprehended at an airport and forced to reveal his identity to authorities.

MPs suspended for not quite sure what

March 23, 2010

Three former Cabinet ministers have been suspended by the Labour Party after it was discovered they had earned additional income from using their political influence in other areas.

An investigation carried out for Channel 4’s Dispatches series found that Stephen Byers, Geoff Hoon and Patricia Hewitt had all boosted their income by using their political expertise to secure casual work in addition to their parliamentary roles, which, if not declared, is frowned upon slightly by government officials.

The documentary showed undercover footage of Hewitt taking advantage of her ministerial position part-time at her local pub, although when challenged on this, Ms Hewitt insisted she was “only helping out” as it was a busy evening and “they were literally run ragged all night.”

Another passage of the documentary showed Stephen Byers clearly use his parliamentary influence on a Dagenham building site in return for a cash sum believed to be in the region of £50. Byers dismissed the footage as “nonsense” and insisted that he had never taken on any additional paid work, except for a couple of cleaning jobs and a day spent working on a farm, both of which he “voluntarily declared”.

The Channel 4 show concluded with a sequence during which a journalist posed as the manager of a taxi firm, securing the political expertise of Geoff Hoon on Friday and Saturday evenings in an undercover sting operation filmed last autumn. Mr. Hoon was enthusiastic about the offer, saying he could possibly cover one or two weeknights “as and when” required, so long as it was “cash in hand”. He cheerfully ended the meeting by declaring he was “looking forward to starting as soon as possible.”

Chief Whip Nick Brown and General Secretary Ray Collins decided to enforce a suspension immediately after the programme was shown on Channel 4 on Monday night. “As soon as I saw the documentary, I knew we had to do something,” said Collins this morning. “I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, although I wasn’t entirely sure what the problem actually was. After the second ad break it dawned on me that this must be quite serious, so I phoned Nick and said ‘Have you seen this thing on Channel 4?’ and he was like ‘Yeah, tell me about it’. We had a bit of a chat during the rest of the show and decided that an appropriate punishment would be to issue an immediate suspension to all three of them, pending further investigation into these issues. It is important that we’re seen to be acting swiftly and decisively on this, especially given the upcoming election. Plus we think they’re all pricks.”

Scientists able to render small objects “almost invisible”

March 22, 2010

German scientists have developed a method which allows them to make small objects almost invisible to the naked eye from a reasonable distance.

This exciting development could pave the way for experts to eventually render marginally bigger objects slightly less visible, or even see-through. The process works through “hiding” the item under a magic mirror-cloth, which reflects light from its surface making the object beneath it far more difficult to see.

Professor Peter Ian, who led the project, reveals more: “At first, I was sceptical about the idea of going over to Stuttgart to work on this assignment, but I needn’t have worried – the lads (and lady) here have been great. They’ve really made me feel at home and we’ve had a lot of fun developing this technique together over the last four years. For instance, one of the guys left a sandwich on the work surface whilst he went to the coffee machine, so I put the invisibility cloth over it, rendering one of the corners partially less visible. As he came back into the room he initially thought someone had taken a bite out of it, until, of course, he got closer to his desk to find that 100% of the sandwich was still fully visible!

“There was another time, when someone substituted the j-cloth in the staff kitchen with the magic cloth – honestly, it took about 40 minutes to get the washing up done! It was hilarious, because my colleague Ralf began thinking there was something slightly wrong with his fingers. At one point he jumped back and shook both hands in front of him furiously, as he was convinced he’d lost a fingertip. If anything, this just goes to prove how well the method actually works – I mean, if it can fool a qualified scientist, imagine how much fun everyone could have once we get this thing on general release. The possibilities are limitless – at least within the framework of partial invisibility, anyway…”

But it hasn’t all been plain sailing for Prof. Ian and his team, as they also encountered several heartbreaking setbacks during the project: “Working with magic can prove extremely difficult, as it occasionally defies all known logic for no good reason whatsoever. One of the early prototypes, for instance, actually appeared to randomly move the object to different areas of the room, which none of us could work out. We were literally standing there scratching our heads – it left us completely baffled and we had no logical explanation for it. We ended up going back to the drawing board, which was a killer, as that was effectively 6 months’ work down the pan. Another incarnation of this cloth seemed to enable one or two of us to walk on air, which we couldn’t fathom – until we realised that one of our assistants, who shall remain nameless, had used the wrong type of magic. Doh! That was another year’s worth of work undone. Hopefully now we’re somewhere nearer solving the problem of things being visible and, with greater funding and a bit of luck over the next few years, we should be able to develop a means to make reasonably small objects even less opaque than ever thought possible.”

UK voted worst place in developed world by expats

March 12, 2010

A survey of several Britons who live abroad has found that the UK is the worst overall place to live in the developed world, with 100% of those questioned saying they “wouldn’t go back if you paid me”.

The results, taken from expatriates living in six different countries, found that Australia was the by far the best place for disillusioned British families to live, with a quality of life of over 1000.

Expat Peter Ian, who moved with his wife to Australia over 16 years ago, isn’t surprised by the results: “We’ve never looked back, if we’re honest. You only have to look at the state of Britain to see how bad things have become over there. You can’t even walk down the street without getting stabbed these days – and if it isn’t that, then there’s the level of immigration to contend with. Put it this way, it’s not the Britain I remember. In the end we had no choice but to emigrate.

“Australia, on the other hand, is fantastic. It’s sunny every single day here and there’s no need to work, as everyone just surfs all the time. It’s like living in a dream. Over here, you don’t have to pay extortionate taxes or worry about crime, as the government just gives away free money – all you have to do is draw out as much as you need to spend each time you go to the cashpoint and it never runs out. It’s the fairest economic system in the world – plus we can send our kids to private school completely free of charge, because over here, ALL schools are private – not like the shitty, crime-ridden dumps they probably have in England nowadays. All students get free laptops and unlimited internet access, and can attend lessons as and when they choose, which I think you’ll agree is slightly better than the moth-eaten textbooks shared between three pupils you probably still get in the pikey scum-holes over in the UK.”

Tony Mick, a tax exile living in Spain, agrees: “I’d have definitely said Australia would make the best place to live, so those results don’t surprise me one bit. Although, having said that, we do love it here in Spain. The weather’s beautiful and the seas are like a bath, even in January. It’s like living in a postcard. The best thing was, when we moved here in 1988, the pound was worth about a hundred pesetas, which meant that the moment we set up home in Spain we were instant millionaires! We’ve spent over twenty years lounging by the pool, sipping cocktails and working on our sunburn – it’s the best life you could possibly imagine. I just wish they’d speak better English, though. A lot of these Spanish people find things very difficult to understand, although most of them do eventually get the point if you repeat everything louder and slower. Mind you, that doesn’t put us off living here, and we’d certainly never go back to the UK now, as it’s full of scrounging foreigners taking advantage of the sys…oh…”

Nottinghamshire police ‘not like The Bill’ – report

March 11, 2010

Nottinghamshire Police are “nothing like ITV’s The Bill” when it comes to the fight against crime and antisocial behaviour, according to a report released by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC).

The report found that Nottinghamshire Police did not conform “in any way” to the HMIC standard policing template of the fictional character PC Reg Hollis. “We found the results of this investigation quite disheartening,” says HMIC spokesman Peter Ian. “We realise that the Reg Hollis template sets the bar very high, but we’d at least expect most forces to achieve PC Tony Stamp or Sgt June Ackland status. Stamp is the current national average, although our aim is for that to increase to Inspector Monroe-level over the next year. After these latest sets of results, however, this aim is looking far less achievable to the point where we’re actually pleased when a force achieves Bob Cryer status.”

Nottinghamshire Police fared worst in the study, finishing bottom after falling three places from alcoholic 45-year-old uniformed officer Jim Carver to the lowest awardable status – that of inappropriately-named young rookie officer Timothy Able, who appeared in the show from 1989-1990. Greater Manchester and Lincolnshire also fared badly, scoring just Honey Harman and Emma Keane respectively.

It wasn’t all bad news, however, as several forces scored quite highly, with Cleveland topping the rankings after a remarkable transformation from Brian Kite to Dave Quinnan since last year’s study. Surrey also fared particularly well, scoring an impressive DCI Jack Meadows, as did Merseyside, Northumbria and Hertfordshire.

Actor Graham Cole, who played PC Tony Stamp in the long-running show until 2009, said yesterday that the results were “disappointing overall”. The unassuming voice of ITV4’s Police Stop! added: “It doesn’t do much for public confidence in modern policing, does it? When I started in the show, back in 1984, you didn’t have ‘reasonable force’ – ANY force was ‘reasonable’ if it got the job done. I remember one time around 1986 when me and Carver had this lad in custody and he just wasn’t talking. Jim calmly walked across the interview room, paused the tape and held him down while I gave him a good shoe to the side of his head – that’s where I got the nickname ‘Stamp’ from. That, and the fact that it was my character’s actual surname, obviously.

“Fictional policing was far better back in the 80s. You could get away with so much more. For instance, there was one time we did a raid on this drug dealer’s house. Real piece of dirt, he was. Me and a couple of the other actors gave him a right good hiding before taking him down the other end of the studios where the nick was located and confiscating his hold-all. Burnside was with me when we were going through his stuff and we couldn’t believe it – there must have been over £100,000 in there, all in twenties. Frank turned to me and went ‘No-one’s gonna miss a couple of them bundles, are they?’ as we pocketed five grand each. At the end of the shoot the producers let me and Chris Ellison take them home. My heart was pounding as I got back to my flat and flung the wad onto my dining table to count the money. Imagine my disappointment as I realised that the only twenties in the entire pile were on the top and bottom. There was only £40 in the whole bundle – no wonder the studio let us keep it! We’d been stitched up good and proper, like a right couple of mugs. Then I got a call from Sun Hill telling me not to attempt spending the £40, as the £20 notes they had used for the piles were only photocopies. Unbelievable! What an insult. Luckily, I was able to take out my anger on a suspect the next day…”

Chancellor won’t Budge from March 24th, say experts

March 10, 2010

Chancellor Alistair Darling will today announce the date he intends to deliver Labour’s final pre-election Budget, with many predicting it to take place in two weeks’ time on March 24th.

It is widely expected that Mr. Darling will conform to media speculation surrounding the potential date of the Budget by revealing to MPs later today that it will indeed take place on March 24th, as predicted.

Hackneyed media hack piece-of-shit scum Peter Ian is adamant the Chancellor will buckle under the intense pressure concerning the date of the Budget: “He may well toy with the idea of going maybe a week earlier or a week later, but in the end he’ll plump for March 24th, because he has no imagination whatsoever. We all know he’ll call it for that date, so I don’t know why there’s all this ceremony about it. He’s going to look such a prick this afternoon when he announces the Budget for the 24th – we’ve all known about it for months! And Brown will look like an even bigger doofus when he leaden-footedly toes the media line and calls the General Election for the 6th of May. Well, duh! Yesterday’s news, mate.

“Mind you, it gives us something to write about, doesn’t it? You can easily spin out a 400-500 word article centred around this one measly fact, which everyone already knows anyway. But you’ll still get people reading it, going ‘Ooh, I didn’t know there’d be a Budget just before the election…I wonder if he really will hold it on March 24th…’ – despite the fact the article mentions the date in every fucking paragraph. In fact, we may even keep those people in mind by including a frankly insulting ‘contribution’ from some psychic at the end of the article, just to try and plug that date even further. Mind you, you’d have to be some pretty scummy, down-market kind of tabloid outfit to try something that pathetic.”

Acclaimed psychic Maggie Averidge offers her unique view on the Chancellor’s upcoming decision. Speaking in italics, the 54-year-old said yesterday: “I can see Mr. Darling faces a big crossroads – possibly something to do with his career. Or possibly not. He may end up making a life-changing decision at some point – possibly towards the end of the month, although the message is not as clear as I’m used to receiving. Perhaps there’s something important happening in May – I’m seeing hustle and bustle, voting slips, disappointment … hmmm … not sure what that could mean – I’m only a facilitator of spirit communication, after all. It’s up to you to join the dots and form your own conclusions …”