HOW TO CATCH A MOTH

  1. Spy moth in dark. Tip: stand near a light.
  2. As moth circles the light, do not chase its crazy unpredictable arcs. Electrocution isn’t pleasant, whereas may moths eat coats, but never humans.
  3. Stand in one spot and clap steadily, every half second or so. Clapping too fast can attract wolves. Wolves eat people, often in fairy tales, not so often in real life.
  4. Do not lunge if the moth swoops by.
  5. Hold your nerve, and just clap. After 6 or 7 circles, you’ll be wiping moth guts from your palms.
  6. Feed moth entrails to cat.

OUCH

What happens to our brains when we miss an entire night’s sleep? Does it sue the body for damages? This is the tug ‘o’ war I find myself in right now. Delirium. Grab a can opener and work your way around my skull and have a look inside for me would you?

Is it a Ukrainian dogfight in miniature? Or are Crossrail in there tunnelling from one ear to the other? All I know it is hurts. Like hell. An imploding avalanche of numbness as these words clamber out in a dislocated mess. I hold my thumb and index finger to my nose and blow in a vain attempt to pop the pain. This only balloons the thud to the outer reaches of my head, like a turkey chick in a hen’s egg.

What caused this ouch to the power of infinity? Well, to paraphrase Tom Waits, the keyboard has been drinking, not me. On that growling note, I’m off to find a new head at Argos. I may be gone some time.

EAT ZOO

Dear Carnivores,

I hope you enjoyed your roasted bird over Christmas, but wondered whether you enquired as to its gender?

The reason I ask is I’d like to know if one sex is tastier than the other. Is a muscular male more succulent than a buxom female? Does it depend on the part of the bird you’re tucking into? Let’s leapfrog the cliche and assume for a second that the leg of lady is more tender than that of her macho counterpart. And while we’re in the seat of assumption, let’s reckon on the breast of a man out-juicing the breast of a woman (still talking turkey, of course).

And what of its poor country cousin, the chicken? Can you eat a pregnant chicken? Is a chicken always pregnant? How about a pair of pigeons on a plate, one of each sex, and a blind taste test to define a verdict?

No, I’ve got a better idea. Let’s all go carnivore. It’ll sort out the food crisis, the care crisis and the out of control population. Maybe we could elect to be eaten by our family, friends or fellow man instead of donating our bodies to medical science – just think of the fun you could have with that organ donor card in your wallet.

And why restrict our diet to people and poultry? Let’s launch a chain of restaurants called Eat Zoo. Yes, you enter, browse and choose your dish from a cage (or free range safari park, we don’t want a run-in with the animal rights brigade). And you get to cook it yourself. DIY BBQ.

Yep, that just about nails/skewers it.

See, in the month of detox and abstinence, we fall upon bounteous ideas to save mankind.

Must go now, as I need to marinate loris kebabs for the kids supper.

3AM (# 74,874)

There’s a badger at the window with a moth sitting on his head. The moth keeps ducking to evade the bat who has lost his radar since the clocks went back last night.

Nocturalism is all over the shop tonight as it readjusts its set according to the only animal that uses a bidet.

A frog leaps up 5 inches, realises his grip isn’t up to it, then slides down the glass like a melting mousse.

The slugs are in mid rave. They can’t believe the summer long banquet every gardener on earth laid out for them.

The neighbourhood fox is about to murder something for fun. He doesn’t wear a bib. That would be like walking around with his AK47 hanging out of his flies.

Next-door’s cat stands her ground with her sixteen flick-knives.

It’s all going to kick off once I turn out the light.

Good night, night life.

THE GIANTESS

Ever since story-telling man taught gullible man to believe in anything, tales of colossal beings have been spun around men. Usually with beards. And warts. And boots the size of houses.

What if King Kong had been Queen Kong and Ann Darrow had been Dan Arrow? Aside from the Daryl Hannah in Attack of the 50ft woman, really, really, really big women have been thin on the ground.

Until 5am this morning.

I found myself in the turquoise finger-nailed clutch of a female who was so tall, her hair was the clouds, and changed style as frequently. She was not a man-eater, nor was she a siren. Instead she spoke to me, in a Cumbrian accent, with the velocity of a summer scirocco – the wind that is, not the car. What did she speak of? She told me a story so sad that it had the power to bring the dead back to life.

So, if you know of anyone who you’d like to resurrect, or you are indeed undead yourself, then post me a message and I’ll find a way of telling you the rest.

DALE ORGANIC FARM

One word might save them yet.

The O word.

No, not that one.

This one: organic.

Here’s how it unfolds.

The Soil Association hear of a communal allotment and ask for a look-see.

They call in the Eden Project who use their eco-clout to lobby for the UK’s first ever Area of Special Societal Interest.

By the News at Ten on Wednesday, it has certifiable organic status and a farm shop has opened up at the gates with Hugh F-Whit on the till.

By Friday clocking off time, Dale Farm Organic Jam is in Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Lidl, Fortnum & Mason and hits the ingredients trolley on Masterchef.

The site is given a PDO (Protected Designation of Origin), twinned with the Champagne region and they all live loadedly ever after.

IF CHICKENS WERE HUMAN

My neighbour’s chickens aren’t well. In fact, they’re dead. Last night, all blood-curdling-hell broke loose. Evidence points to a fox with a streak as mean as Frederick West, but without the giveaway hair and abattoir eyes. Ordinarily, like your friendly neighbourhood psycho, a fox will not stop until he has killed all before him. But some for some strange reason, this Travis Bickle-with-a-tail felt a streak of humanitarian soul race through him after mauling the eighth bird to gougons. The ninth hen is a wreck, but she is alive.

Now the accepted wisdom is poultry has no feelings, or at least that’s what the late Bernard Matthews would’ve liked us to believe. But what if this brave egg-laying hero could tell us what had happened?  What if she could gather her thoughts and stand up in an animal farm court and pick out the fox in a line-up against the cat, the falcon, the hyena, and the other usual and unusual suspects?  Imagine her compassion if she could learn to forgive the banged-up fox and visit him, fighting his case as he awaits Death Row, maybe even falling for him as Susan Sarandon once did in a movie. In fact, imagine Susan Sarandon playing the chicken. What would she wear? Which then begs the question, who would play the fox?

Suggestions, in a wholemeal wrap, to: The Coen Brothers

WE BUILT, WE SLEPT, WE DISMANTLED

The ShelterBox Hotel lived for all of a night.

It went up in 9 hours and came down in 3.

In between we toasted the brilliant work of ShelterBox, the brilliant build of the crew and the brilliant verve of our guests who trusted us to create a hotel from scratch from scrap.

Here we are, an hour in.

Eight hours later, the doors open and guests rock up.

To those who came, who saw and who concussed after many too many drinks, we toast you.

THE LAST PLANT ON EARTH

Nature looks at the war we’re waging upon it.

And laughs.

We think it’s got the hump because we’ve raped the planet of its fossil fuels, an act akin to trees uprooting every grave of every human ever buried and torching them just to fend off the frost.

But we’re wrong, as we always are.

Nature has the upper hand – I heard this while watering mine today.

Plants plan to die first.

They are developing super-diseases to fast-track their extinction.

Of course, we’ll manufacture plastic trees and fake our species through another century or so until the elements leave us for a more considerate dominant species on a more considerate planet.

It’ll all end up with the last plant on earth, over-protected to kingdom come like the pumping heart of a cryogenic god.

Oh, to bleed sap.

THE BRAIN CANNOT FEEL PAIN

Or love.

Yet it holds the remote control for the rest of our body.

Given a choice, would you rather ache or live in accordance with the blue wire in a 3 pin plug?

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