The news that Cherie Blair's time as a leading member of the England WAGs (Wives And Girlfriends) has passed away after nine-and-a-half years has come as an enormous shock to expensive hairdressers and style consultants across Britain and an enormous relief to Labour Party supporters and Downing Street officials.
Cherie Blair's WAGhood was born in May 1997 when, with her husband elevated to the Premiership, humble Cherie Blair - the straightforward young woman who once told a reporter she could have grown up to be a simple Liverpudlian shopgirl - joined the ranks of "Wives And Girlfriends" of the international scene's most famous players.
Though often criticised for finding herself in the light of media stardom only due to her proximity to her silky-skilled husband, there can be little doubt that as a WAG Cherie brought something unique to the celebrity firmament, even if that unique something was merely a tendency to shoot her mouth off at extremely unfortunate moments. Certainly, things began well for Cherie's WAGhood - with her husband's electrifying pace of reform and exquisite bill-passing skills receiving praise abroad as well as at home, Mrs Blair soon found herself jetting first class around the globe, staying in the most luxurious locations and being pictured in the most glamorous nightspots in the most expensive of designer creations.
While Tony spent his days juggling balls with top-flight international players such as Silvio "I Own The Referee" Berlusconi and George "Bomb Your Legs Off" Bush, Cherie spent them indulging her hobby of being a lawyer, giggling with her style consultants and £275 a go hairdressers, or indulging in house-buying trips with Australian conmen. Her evenings were spent on Tony's arm, wining and dining with the country's leading celebrities, actors, artists, popstars and also Sir Cliff Richard.
It may be trite to assert that such a blessed life could not be long-lived but it was nonetheless true of Cherie's WAGhood. With her husband's pace and flair being sapped by the years, frequent conflicts with midfield maestro Gordon Brown, and tabloid rumours of an affair with George Bush, Cherie was soon facing the prospect of her WAGhood, like his career, being relegated to the bench. Attempts to carve out her own career in charity work were frustrated by the fact a major beneficiary so often seemed to be Cherie herself, while attempts to carve out a career as a respected judge were frustrated by her tendency to indulge in Mayan rebirthing ceremonies to readjust her energy flow. The final blow was to come when Tony suffered a dreadful injury following a tackle from behind by several members of his own team, led by Gordon Brown. Facing isolation and loss of her WAG privileges, Cherie's WAGhood spontaneously combusted.
The funeral ceremony was held in Manchester on Tuesday. As the WAGhood's small urn was placed in its niche before an honour guard of Hopi ear candle sellers and an audience who had been forced to pay £300 a head for the privilege of attending, Cherie herself was overcome by her emotions. That these emotions were chiefly malice and rage became evident as she had to be dragged from the graveside, screaming "F***ing Brown. I'll rip the lying Scottish get's f***ing throat out".
Cherie Blair's WAGhood is survived by a massive mortgage, a series of highly profitable "charity" lectures and Samantha Cameron.
26 September 2006
The news that Cherie Blair's time as a leading member of the England WAGs (Wives And Girlfriends) has passed away after nine-and-a-half years has come as an enormous shock to expensive hairdressers and style consultants across Britain and an enormous relief to Labour Party supporters and Downing Street officials.
22 September 2006
It is difficult to relay the impact that the sudden and unexpected death of journalist, broadcaster, motoring expert and professional loud-mouthed know-it-all Jeremy Clarkson will have upon the world.
Jeremy Charles Robert Clarkson was born in 1960 to a long line of Yorkshiremen and exhibited the virtues of his home county, namely forthrightness and plain-speaking (or "being loud" and "being rude" as they are known outside Yorkshire). He learnt the craft that was to bring him fame as a child when - allowed into the pub to collect the crisps and coca-cola he would be imbibing in the family car while his parents chatted with friends in the snug - he spotted his first pub know-it-all, holding forth at length on why Richard Nixon would beat Leonid Brezhnev in a fight and how all Italians smelled suspiciously of garlic. As he watched the frankly terrified expressions on the faces of the know-it-all's audience, Clarkson knew he had found his ideal job.
After spending many a night hunched under his bedcovers with the Big Boy's Book of Facts and The Hitler Youth Guide To Everything (not to mention several mysteriously soiled copies of Health and Efficiency) young Jeremy was ready to find the perfect tool to display his burgeoning skills. After realising that the perfect tool was himself, he went on to search for the arena in which to express his art and was soon to find himself among the tedious, mileage-and-torque-obsessed men of motoring journalism. With his ability to deliver outrageous and ill-thought-through opinions by means of heavily-prepared and overwrought metaphors, Clarkson soon found himself promoted to television where he became a hugely successful presenter of the BBC's Top Gear programme and a hugely less successful presenter of the chatshow "Clarkson".
Friends believe Mr Clarkson was deeply affected by his friend and co-presenter Richard Hammond's recent, appalling, high-speed accident and - unable to cope with being second best in any area - was driven to outdo Mr Hammond's near-death experience by going "just that little bit further". This, at least, is the only reasonable explanation anyone can come up with for his decision - aided only by a BBC camera crew, a large collection of over-extended similes and extensive gurning to camera - to break into Her Majesty's Naval Base Clyde, Faslane and smuggle himself aboard nuclear submarine HMS Vanguard. Once inside the sub, Mr Clarkson strapped himself to a Trident nuclear missile and - having acquired the launch codes from a senior Naval official after reducing him to a quivering wreck with a three-hour tirade on the obnoxiousness of the French - launched himself at the nearest Greenpeace headquarters with a cry of "Eat atomic death, treehugggers" and a few pithy remarks about the lack of leather or walnut trim on the latest Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles. As a result of his actions, it is understood several of Mr Clarkson's remaining atoms now hold the British water, air and land speed records.
Jeremy Clarkson is survived by a long-suffering family and a note reading "In your face, Hammond".
20 September 2006
Sports fans are in shock following the death of The Beautiful Game. The Game has been followed for decades by millions of soccer fans across the globe, all eager to gather in front of their newspapers, radios and television screens for details of the latest transfers of players from club to club and of money from sports agent to football manager.
The Beautiful Game was born in the 1860's when, only months after the Rules of Association Football were first laid down by the FA, the manager of the N.N. (No Names) Club, Kilburn was offered his weight in Millingtons Unfiltered Gaspers to agree to the transfer of dashing, young centre-forward Aloysius "The Flying Cad" Formby from Blackheath Proprietary School.
Over the following decades The Beautiful Game was to make little progress, confining itself to building the odd manager a cheap patio or installing an avocado bath suite in a chief coach's home. This was due partly to the rectitude of those involved in football and mainly to the fact that all the money in British soccer at the time was insufficient to maintain a single sports agent. All was to change in the early 1990's, when hundreds of millions of pounds were diverted to the game from Rupert Murdoch's War on Culture to set up the Premier League.
Soon The Beautiful Game was advancing apace and developing exciting new moves, including the bung, the backhander, the sweetener, the tap-up and the illegal approach. Followers of The Game frequently marvelled at displays of extraordinary skill as the most outrageous bribes were explained away with straight faces, their enjoyment heightened all the more by the comic ineptitude of the governing authorities. Indeed all agreed that The Game was at its very peak when, only this week, it was brought low by a series of inquiries, investigations and a tragic outbreak of football.
The Beautiful Game is survived by diving, professional fouling, lousy refereeing, numerous assault allegations, hundreds of kiss-and-tell-stories and David Beckham.
Political colleagues and fellow members of the non-living community last night paid tribute to Sir Menzies “Ming” Campbell, whose brief reign as leader of the Liberal Zombies continued this week at the annual party conference in Brighton, following his success in persuading part members to drop their promise of a 50p tax rate for high-earning living people and replace it with a range of green taxes ... on green bile, green blood and green putrefying flesh. With Sir Menzies's continuance in office, the dream of Britain’s first Zombocracy remains
Sir Menzies had thought that at the overripe old age 65 he had missed his chance to lead a major political party. Indeed, he was right and was comfortably elected a member of the living dead in March 2006, becoming Liberal Democrat leader after beating off the insufferable one who drives around in a taxi and the happily-married one who likes rent boys. In taking up his new position, Sir Menzies ensured an orderly transition of power from one undead leader to another was assured, Charles Kennedy having led the Liberal Democrats for many years despite being embalmed for many years.
During the funeral ceremony (or "conference" as the Liberal Zombies prefer to call it) Mr Kennedy himself was to rise up briefly from his embalming vat (believed to be a barrel of 12-year-old single malt) and take his place under the banners "Trust in Zombies" and "Make Britain Gorier" to deliver an address full of praise and pledges of loyalty to his corpse-like leader. Mr Kennedy also used his funeral oration to declare his intention to remain in politics and the Liberal Zombies - causing much scratching of suppurating heads among his audience.
The Living Death of Sir Menzies Campbell is survived by Charles Kennedy.
17 September 2006
The population of the Vatican was today mourning the 21st Century, after it was declared dead by Pope Benedict XVI in a brief address from St Peter's Square.
It appears from his His Holiness's speech that, despite being born in a vigorous bout of distrust of modernity brought on by inoculation with the Millennium Bug, the still young century had been showing increasing signs of ill health over the past six years. In particular there was evidence that it had inherited several afflictions from its parents, the 19th and 20th centuries, including freedom of thought, belief in Darwinian Evolution, women's liberation, the unfortunate practice of prosecuting priests who wish to display their affections to young choir boys and a distressing lack of crusades in the Holy Land. The Century having failed to improve despite the finest leechcraft of the Vatican's doctors, the Holy Father eventually found himself with no alternative but to administer the last rites to the century ... whilst also administering a red hot poker to the Century's fundament.
Speaking to an assembled crowd of serfs, freemen, pardoners, clerkes, reeves, apothecaries and villeins, Pope Benedict announced that henceforth the 21st century will be replaced by the ever-reliable 14th century, adding that from now on the Sun will travel around the Earth, the Black Death will be endemic across Europe and the best way of improving Christian-Muslim relations will be at the end of a long and pointy lance. His Holiness's address was greeted by rapturous applause from the crowd, though the effect was somewhat lessened when several of the lepers' arms fell off. Fortunately the festive air was soon restored by the burning of an assortment of witches.
The 21st Century was buried on Saturday morning in a moving ceremony, marred only when Pope Benedict told the assembled relatives that the 21st Century was "evil and inhuman", although officials later explained His Holiness had not meant to cause any offence.
15 September 2006
Fans across the globe are mourning the death of NATO, the supergroup that had rocked much of the globe since its foundation in 1949. Brought together from some of the leading powers of the Western World, and Canada, the band was soon building a powerful reputation as it played gigs across much of Western Europe, picking up new members on its travels.
All seemed to be going well until France - angered at what it saw as America and the UK hogging the limelight - split from the group in the sixties, intent on pursuing solo projects including "Gaullist Arrogance" and "Building Nuclear Bombs". Despite this the other NATO members soldiered on. Acknowledged as the mightiest group in the globe and rivalled only by "The Warsaw Pact", notorious for a series of drunken performances during which many of their own members got beaten up, NATO's own act became increasingly bloated and unwieldy, with trillions of dollars spent on stage equipment that would never be used. Rumours began to circulate of money problems, arguments and even dark ceremonies involving millions of dollars being sacrificed to right-wing terrorists.
Despite this, when "The Warsaw Pact" eventually folded in the early 90's, many of its members decided to combine their forces with NATO. Soon even France was welcomed back into the fold, it's unique stylings a welcome addition to the line-up. It was not long before NATO was performing in new and exciting venues, preaching a new message of peace and reconstruction - accompanied by lots of heavy metal bombing - in the former Yugoslavia and Afghanistan.
Facing an ever-heavier tour schedule, band relations became increasingly fractious, with America - backed by Britain - spending more and more of its time on ill-conceived concept project "Bombing the Heck out of Iran" and the even more ludicrous "Invading Iraq". Differences became ever stronger and when, in 2006, America and Britain called for members to get together for a rooftop concert in Afghanistan, only two Latvians turned up.
NATO will be buried this weekend, if anyone can be bothered.
13 September 2006
Doctors at the St Diana Hospital for the Self-Deluded have confirmed that former Royal Butler Paul Burrell's Last Link To Reality passed away this week. Although reports from the hospital remain unclear it appears that The Link - which had been in poor health for many years - entered a coma early on Sunday after a brief, seventeen-hour, chat with Mr Burrell himself about the former butler's deep and abiding love for Diana, Princess of Wales and how much he meant to her.
The product of a childhood in a coal-mining village in the North of England, The Link spent much of its troubled life in Mr Burrell's company. When he first joined the Royal staff, The Link decided to go with him, taking it upon itself to listen to young Paul's tales of Royal goings-on while quietly reminding him of his position - at that time Third Under-Footstool-In-Waiting.
The relationship between the pair became more difficult in 1987, when Mr Burrell was appointed butler to the Prince and Princess of Wales. With Mr Burrell spending much of his time in the glare of the media spotlight (even if only at the very edge of that glare and usually concealed beneath the princess's shopping), The Link found itself seeing less and less of its old friend. Things worsened still following the Royal divorce when - apparently prompted by an offhand remark from Diana - Mr Burrell spent several months believing he was a rock.
Following Diana's death, The Link's attempts to see Mr Burrell became ever more infrequent. Soon it became content to sit at home, watching its old friend as he chose to maintain a quiet and dignified silence by selling his story to the world and eating kangaroo testicles on ITV 'reality' programme "I'm A Nonentity - Get Me Out of Here".
Soon The Link's health began to fail, even as Mr Burrell was finding a new role for himself as keeper of a private museum containing a surprisingly large assortment of Diana's property and as defender of the princess's reputation against all those who might wish to do her wrong, such as her own children.
The Link is survived by the only person on this Earth who ever really knew and understood Diana.
11 September 2006
Gordon Brown’s Chance of Ever Becoming Prime Minister was found dead this weekend after constables broke down the door of its Downing Street residence. The police had been alerted to a possible tragedy by a noisy and protracted domestic row between Mr Brown and his neighbour.
Police sources revealed The Chance of Gordon Brown Ever Becoming Prime Minister had been stabbed through the heart with a silver fork bearing the legend “Granita”. It is thought that the fatal blow was struck by Tony Blair during a lunch at the Granita restaurant, Islington in 1994, when Gordon agreed to let Mr Blair become Prime Minister – in return for Tony picking up the bill for the meal.
It appears that a macabre cult, known only as The Brownites, had concealed the death from the Prime Minister, an unsuspecting media and even Mr Brown himself. The necrophiliac group worshipped the corpse daily, believing a day would come when it would be resurrected as the saviour of the Labour Party, the nation and Raith Rovers FC.
For the last 13 years the media unquestioningly accepted The Brownites' claims that The Chance of Gordon Brown Ever Becoming Prime Minister was alive and well. Recent sightings of vultures circling Downing Street led to a vigorous investigation into the health of The Chance, however, and - following reports of crockery being thrown at Number Ten during a meeting between Brown and Blair - journalists scented blood ... or possibly embalming fluid.
Members of the Labour Party, realising the game was up, readily confessed the truth about the gruesome murder – prompting Charles Clarke to accuse Gordon Brown of “absolutely stupid” behaviour, an area in which the disgraced former-Home-Secretary is a much-respected authority.
The Chance of Gordon Brown Ever Becoming Prime Minister will be cremated at a Private-Finance-Initiative funeral this week. It is survived by Mr Brown's beloved Prudence and Prime Minister Tony Blair.
10 September 2006
In another of our occasional series, we at As A Dodo bring you "Brief Lives" - short obituaries by our staff writers. Our first Brief Life follows the sad death of the P Diddy monicker ...
The music world is once more mourning the death of a major rap star. P Diddy has been killed following a dispute with major gangland figure K "Tattifilarious" Dodd over the right to use the "Diddy" name.
Police remain unclear over the precise sequence of events but it is understood Mr Combs was leaving the Grape and Firkin in Knotty Ash, Liverpool after enjoying a pint of IPA and a plate of scouse with friends, when he was attacked in a drive-by tickle-sticking. The assailants have not been positively identified but local rumour points to the involvement of Dodd's enforcers The Diddymen. The vicious gang - whose members include Mick the Marmalizer, Nigel Ponsonby Smallpiece, Wee Hamish McDiddy, Harry Cott and the notorious Dickie Mint - is wanted along with Dodd for a series of crimes during the 60's and 70's including arson at the Jam Butty Mines, a suspicious drowning at the Treacle Works and the 1965 number 1 single "Tears".
P Diddy is survived by Sean "Puffy" Combs. Mr Combs is currently being sued over the "Puffy" nickname by John Prescott.
09 September 2006
Following the release of hitherto secret files in the United States of America, As A Dodo can reveal that the Last Possible Reason For War With Iraq was terminated with extreme prejudice by the Central Intelligence Agency last summer and secretly buried by the Bush administration.
The Last Possible Reason For War With Iraq was born to George Bush and Tony Blair in 2002, the youngest of several older Reasons for War With Iraq, including Weapons of Mass Destruction, Control of the Oil Supply and Cos It Looked At My Pint Funny, all of which had tragically died in early childhood. Despite this distressing background, The Last Reason refused to be deterred and, within months of its birth, it was leading American troops into war with a smile on its lips, a song in its heart and a wild and wholly false battle cry claiming Saddam Hussein was linked to Al Qaeda bellowing from its throat. Soon it was setting about its multiple tasks of distracting from the search for Osama bin Laden, alienating Islamic opinion and avenging the President's Pa with relish.
In the following years The Reason was to distinguish itself repeatedly in action against Senate Committees, the international intelligence community and common sense, repeatedly leaping to the lips of such luminaries as Colin Powell, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and, of course, the President himself, not to mention all employees of Fox News. Soon it became the rallying call of all those who believed strongly in prosecuting war in Iraq (from the safety of a sofa in America), enabling them to join together in building some of the greatest ahievements of the early twenty-first century, including the removal of civil liberties, increased surveillance of citizenry, heightened paranoia and the abandonment of the norms created by International Law and the Geneva Conventions. Despite these successes, however, The Reason was ultimately to fall in the summer of 2005 when, faced with multiple enquiries it was ultimately outgunned by the forces of the truth. Given its many sacrifices, it is perhaps little surprise that despite its defeat, its words are still to be found on the lips of the President almost daily.
The Last Reason is survived by Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and a reinvigorated Iran.
Tory frontbench spokesman Boris Johnson's Mouth has passed away during the night, mere hours after being shot off by Mr Johnson himself.
Boris Johnson's Mouth was born in 1964, to a long line of Mouths. Educated at Eton and Oxford, and well-versed in the language of Ancient Greece, Rome and Billy Bunter, the Mouth had all the qualifications necessary to make it a senior body part at both the influential right-leaning Daily Telegraph newspaper and the influential right-leaning Spectator magazine. Its progress was swift, soon becoming Telegraph leader writer, a task made all the more difficult by having to grasp its pen between its teeth. Just one year after Mr Johnson's marriage to Marina Wheeler in 1993, it became Mouth to The Spectator editor, in which role it divided its time between conducting editorial meetings and whispering sweet nothings into Petronella Wyatt's Ear.
Beyond journalism, Boris Johnson's Mouth began to make a name for itself in comedy, appearing on satirical panel shows such as The News Quiz and Have I Got News For You, as well as in the long running Whitehall farce "The Conservative Party", in which it was to take a leading role in 2004 as Parliamentary Mouth to the Shadow Minister for Arts. Regretfully, the Mouth was already becoming increasingly eccentric and unreliable and, in October 2004, Mr Johnson is believed to have shot it off for the first time, making characteristically ill-judged reference to the Hillsborough disaster and claiming that Liverpudlians were mawkish. Despite doing dreadful penance by making a speaking tour of Liverpool, worse was to come only days later when Mr Johnson shot off his Mouth again, after it declared that claims it was having an affair with Petronella Wyatt's Ear were "an inverted pyramid of piffle" a declaration that led to the ground opening beneath it and attempting to swallow it up, while Mr Johnson's pants burst into spontaneous flame. Its reputation in tatters, the Mouth was dismissed from its role, only returning to the Conservative front benches in 2006 as part of new Tory leader David Cameron's assemblage of thrusting and radical Old Etonians.
Tired, weary and mentally unbalanced, Mr Johnson shot off his Mouth for the final time this week, accusing Papua New Guineans of being cannibals. Friends and journalists, hoping for one last misstatement from The Mouth, were gathered at its bedside as it uttered its final words which were "yoiks", or possibly "yarroo". It is to be buried next Saturday, alongside Gogol's Nose and Kafka's Dick.
07 September 2006
In darkened bedrooms across Europe, millions of gamers are sitting, unwashed and ashen-faced, hardly able to contemplate the grim reality of the newly-dawned day. Although this is completely normal behaviour, experts believe that at least some of them will be mourning the European Playstation 3, whose death was announced in Japan on Wednesday night by staff at the Premature Consoles Unit of the once prestigious St Sony's Hospital.
Born before its time after its mother received a terrible shock - it is understood she was almost crushed by a herd of gigantic Xbox 360's while on safari in the United States - the European Playstation 3 struggled almost from the moment of its birth. Ugly and misshapen, "the elephant console" as it became known - spent its short life being exhibited to carefully selected crowds of prurient gaming journalists and spotty teenage boys with fake passes, all eager to thrill at its monstrous form and ungainly blu-ray drive. Forced to perform tricks - balancing millions of pixels on screen at a time, waggling its motion sensitive "joypad" - for the amusement of the crowd, even as it was being prodded and gawped at by the curious, the console's already weak health was failing. Soon, medics at St Sony's were hiding it from sight altogether, while they struggled night and day to save its life. Finally, with several of its organs failing or missing altogether, the doctors had no alternative but to cease treatment and pronounce "Game Over" on their patient.
The European Playstation 3 was buried on Thursday, in a very large, shiny black coffin which was laid to rest under a gigantic widescreen TV while the choir sang an a cappella version of the Crash Bandicoot theme. It is survived by an Italian plumber with a gorilla fixation and Bill Gates.
06 September 2006
Prime Minister Tony Blair's Grip On Power slipped away last night, complaining of stabbing pains in the back, following a sudden attack by some of its closest followers.
Born in 1994, with Tony Blair's accession to the Labour leadership, the youthful Grip was seen as the saviour of its party and its country after years of tyranny. The Grip held the people of Britain in thrall through sheer force of personality and the ability to say whatever it thought its listeners wanted to hear. Within three years the Grip had taken control of the whole of the United Kingdom amid scenes of jubilation as a grateful nation celebrated the end of 18 years of attacks on public services and civil liberties by a rulers apparently drunk on their own power.
It was not long, however, before these celebrations turned to consternation as The Grip began the sequence of behaviour that would lead ultimately to its demise. By late 1997, rumours were already circulating that it had persuaded Mr Blair to announce to his inner circle that he was, in fact, the reincarnation of the divine Thatcher and should be worshipped as a God. Soon The Grip was at work demanding sacrifices from public sector workers, single mothers and people on disability benefit, as well as pushing ahead with grandiose plans to erect a temple to its memory in the form of a giant dome in Greenwich.
In the following years, The Grip's behaviour became ever more erratic, alternating between showering its followers among the legions of the public services with billions of pounds, the next moment insisting they be sacrificed to market forces in the arena. Increasingly fixated on creating a legacy comparable to that of its forbears, The Grip began engaging in an ever larger number of wars, eager to bring the Pax Britannica to all parts of the globe whether they wanted it or not, ultimately leaving the country's forces so thinly spread that men marching in the closest possible formation could only speak to each other via mobile phone.
By the closing days of Mr Blair's Premiership, The Grip was showing ever more signs of mental instability, making plans for a grand progress around the country in which the people of Britain could show their deep love for the leader or be imprisoned under the latest provisions of the Terrorism Act for failing to do so, as well as privately revealing its intention to make a horse - or failing that, Cherie Blair - Lord Chancellor. In the end, even members of The Grip's loyal Praetorian Guard began to feel unsettled, leading finally to their decision to assassinate their leader even as it returned from the corridors of The Times having announced its immortality.
Tony Blair's Grip On Power will receive its final burial next summer, or sooner if Gordon Brown can manage to hold the pillow down long enough without being caught. It is survived by rising unemployment, a struggling National Health Service, a heightened terrorist threat and Education Secretary, Alan Johnson.
04 September 2006
Welcome to the first in an occasional series, in which we at As A Dodo throw our columns open to the family, friends and acquaintances of the recently deceased. For the first in the series, we approached someone who worked for many years with the famous Australian naturalist Steve Irwin, his old sparring partner Mr Bruce Crocodile.
'Jeez mate, Steve Irwin, what can you say? I know a lot of people across the whole ruddy world are gonna miss old Stevie. A lot of people. Not quite so many animals mind you. Take me for instance, there I was one arvo lying around in a creek up near Kookamularatawatimadingo waiting for a couple of tourists to decide to have a skinny dip (I hate to get sidetracked, but I love it when that happens: "I say, Davina, have you seen this funny log? - It looks just like a crocodile", "Yes it does, doesn't it Anthony? Anthony? I say Anthony, where are you?", "Awwwlllfggfggsgdfgs get it off me, oh Christ get it off my rawlf arrgle, crunch" - it's great, mate, and tasty too). Anyway, there I was in the creek minding my own bizzo, next thing you know there's some sunbleached ocker with a noose around my gob, pointing me at a ruddy camera and telling everyone about my mating habits. I ask you, how would he have liked it if I'd done that to him? Not that I reckon he got round to doing much mating himself - not with shorts that tight.
Fair do's, I admit I had a bit of a grudge against old Steve from that day on. Especially when he upped and stuck me in his ruddy zoo. He looked after us pretty well though. Sure there was always the risk he'd try and stick a finger up your freckle to make you smile for the camera, but the accomodation was pretty decent and the tucker was ace. Once he even offered me his baby. Fair play to him: he might have spent the last ten years giving me the raw prawn but serving up your firstborn as a mid-morning belt-loosener makes up for most things in my book. The bugger of it was the press was there, so he had to take the little ankle biter away before I even got a taste.
Anyway, Steve Irwin. Decent bloke. And anyone who denies it doesn't know Christmas from Bourke Street. At least he got off his fat date and did something with his life - even if that something was buggering around with animals who just wanted a quiet life and the odd pommie tourist to snack on. Go on, raise a tinny to him. And if you're ever down here in Oz, come over to the zoo and look me up, I won't bite ... honest.'
03 September 2006
Smart-1, the European Space Agency's lunar probe, ended its life this morning by crashing into the Lake of Excellence on the Moon, having rejected the Bay of Averageness and Pond of Pillinger as its last resting place. Friends at ESA claim the probe had always wanted to die in this fashion, smashed into a million pieces on the barren surface of another world, which was lucky given so many of ESA's projects end that way.
The washing-machine shaped probe was launched on September 27th, 2003 and took nearly three years to reach the Moon, leading many to speculate it was designed by the combined efforts of members of The Apprentice and Dragon's Den and launched by Richard Branson.
Propelled by a solar-powered ion thruster instead of a chemical combustion engine, Smart-1 made its way to the moon after a complex series of spiral orbits, enabling the tiny but constant thrust from its engine to accelerate it to enormous speed and also allowing it to avoid the London Congestion Charge. Once in orbit round the Moon the probe took thousands of photographs, mapping the Lunar surface and conducting an exhaustive survery of its mineral composition for the benefit of science, mankind and Exxon, BP and Shell.
As well as studying the Moon, Smart-1 also spent the last 16 months of its short life testing innovative technologies of microscopic size, giving hope that it will one day be possible to crash Prince, Paul Daniels or Tom Cruise on the Moon.
The probe smashed into the surface of the Moon at 05:42 GMT, September 3rd, at 5,000 mph, throwing up a dust cloud visible from the Earth and scattering its broken remains over a 10 m crater which has already been named the Lake of Discarded Rubbish, and caused Lunar officials to issue ESA with an Anti-Social Behaviour Order for fly-tipping.
Smart-1 is survived by Nasa's Orion shuttle project, which hopes to put a man on the Moon by 2020 thus fulfilling President George W Bush's $230bn pledge to construct a base on the Moon - a vital part of his administration's War on Cheese.
01 September 2006
(Fictional) George Walker Bush, (fictional) 43rd President of the United States has been assassinated in a (fictional) British television programme to be broadcast next month. The news of the death of one of the greatest (fictional) Presidents has led to scenes of piteous lamentation across a grief-stricken globe.
(Fictional) George W Bush was born in 1946 into an old, established New England family. Despite the advantages afforded to him by his upbringing, (fictional) young George preferred not to rely on his patrician background, keen instead to get on in life by hard work and the application of his keen intelligence. It was these qualities that led him to Yale, from where he would graduate cum laude in 1968. Despite his academic brilliance, (fictional) George was ever eager to serve his country and, despite his misgivings about the conflict in Vietnam, immediately enlisted in the armed forces, ready and willing to serve on the front line.
Returning from war after several tours of duty and having refused all military honours - including the Purple Heart - despite his heroic service, (fictional) George quickly set himself to work on home territory. Wanting to avoid the feckless life of booze and drugs so common among the scions of America's ruling families and raring to make his own way in the world, (fictional) George chose not to accept repeated offers from his father's friends in the oil industry, instead choosing to put his deep scientific knowledge to good use by setting up a self-funded environmental technology company. It was, of course, the invention by that same company of the "(fictional) George W 'Hydropower I' motor" that led to the abandonment of hydrocarbon-burning engines in the automobile industry.
Despite the heavy pressures on his time caused by his scientific and environmental work, (fictional) George was still insistent he had more to do. In 1994 he stood for and was elected Governor of Texas. Few Texans will forget his many successes in that role, including vast reductions in pollution, enormous improvements in educational standards for rich and poor alike, a massive fall in the State's prison population and the near-eradication of poverty. All this while displaying such probity that he insisted on refusing the blandishments of lobbyists and such local favourites as Enron's Kenneth "Kenny Boy" Lay.
Given his astounding achievements it was certain from the moment he was reluctantly persuaded to stand that (fictional) George would become President of the United States in the year 2000. His record-breaking 50-state victory was made all the more remarkable by his decision to persuade brother Jeb Bush to stand down as Governor of Florida for the duration of the election, in order to avoid even the suggestion of any possible impropriety. Truly he was the man to bring a new light to the new millennium.
The achievements of (fictional) President George W Bush while in office are, needless to say, too numerous to mention. His farsighted choice to bring all his efforts to bear on the resolution of the Middle East conflict, combined with his decision to resist all those who called for an attack on Iraq following the terrible events of 9/11 and concentrate instead on the reconstruction of Afghanistan, undoubtedly contributed to the stability and peace the whole region enjoys today - especially following the capture of Osama bin Laden in 2003 by a US Special Forces group led by (fictional) George himself.
Thanks to (fictional) George's tireless championing of the Kyoto Agreement, his commitment to the sciences, leadership on the eradication of poverty throughout the globe and his belief in using America's might only with the greatest of care and planning, it came as no surprise when, earlier this year, the (fictional) President was awarded the Nobel prizes for Physics, Chemistry, Medicine, Economics and Peace. Indeed, many had expected him to complete the clean sweep next year, winning the prize for Literature with his moving novel based on the life of a poor black man struggling to rebuild his life after the destruction of home and family by Hurricane Katrina.
(Fictional) George W Bush will be buried on 9 October. A world will mourn.