Wednesday 28 January 2009

pee for relief

It has been pointed out to the BOF that he has omitted another group from the modest Guantanamo proposal: the hedge fund managers. What is to be done about these parasites?

There is a solution, and it is cheap, elegant, and efficient. Additionally, it has green credentials.

Consider this image:

Imagine, in place of the Cadillacs, hedge-fund managers with their heads planted firmly in the ground.

Yes, you've got it: a HEDGE of HEDGE-FUND MANAGERS. In the UK, there are grants available for planting new hedges, so, in one fell swoop, the parasites are eradicated, the financial behemoth is saved, wealth is redistributed from city to countryside, and a massive new artwork is created.

Given their preoccupation with leaving others in the ordure, the BOF has no doubt that the only encouragement needed to make the hedge grow is the re-routing of sewage outlets. Individuals can participate in the nurturing of this new feature in the landscape by stopping their cars and getting out for a pee-break.

Growth returns to the roots of its meaning.

"are you now, or have you ever been, a member of a bank's board?"

The BOF is back, ready to bore on about how to make the world a better place. And where better to begin than with bankers?

They have taken over from Al-Queda as the most hated group of people in the western world, with their re-definition of selfish greed, their pachyderminous insensitivity, and their arrow-slit view of current events. They were lambasted by Superman in his inauguration speech, yet continue to ask for more - the Oliver Twists of today. 

Remember, though, that Superman has also shown himself to be determined that Guantanamo Bay should close down, and soon.  

Hold your horses! Here, in one deft switch, is the answer, the real beginning of the New Day. The BOF would like to suggest that all current and past directors of all banks should be rounded up and sent to the Camp in Cuba. This will result in getting rid of not only the hated ones, but also of their culture: there would be nobody left who has come to regard obscene payments as the norm (except for footballers, and there is no possible ven-diagram that can show an intersection of these groups.)

Should this prove to be impracticable, whether because of the carbon footprint involved in their transportation, the difficulty in finding a window in their calendar, or the unwillingness of guards to be in the same physical space as these loathsome individuals, there is an alternative solution. A large number of orange overalls will soon become available. These can be handed out to the bankers with instructions to take them off only when they bathe. Within hours, any credibility they had left would be laughed out of existence, their authority would be gone, and with it their power to steal our money.

Thus CHEAP, ELEGANT, and EFFICIENT will become the new slogan for the new world. 

Pull up the zippers!

Friday 9 January 2009

one will do, thank you

So they've got their knickers in a twist over broadband speeds. They being the people who allowed the small-print "up to" as a "reasonable" qualifier.

And who's complaining? Why are they complaining? We've entered the future as it was always supposed to be.  In parts...

But where's the overhead monorail?

Every comic, every artist's-impression, every photo-montage, every futurist set - they all had an overhead monorail in them.  (Some of the gloomier ones even managed monorail disasters.)

We have The Docklands Light Railway.

C'mon, Sir Richard! This is right up your line!

Wednesday 7 January 2009

soul 2 soul

The BOF is a happy man this morning. A message arrived on his facebook page a day or two ago, containing approval and enquiry about his photographs. 

He replied. As ever in these things, the rude and ill-educated Englishman could only use his own language, while his correspondent, hailing from Portugal, managed an exuberant form of a language not her own. 

As the correspondence developed, it transpired that the images Srta. G had selected were identical to his own personal favourites. 

The exchange continued with growing harmonic resonances.

The final phrase in the Senhorita's message read as follows:

"Maybe one day your soul can rest embraced by mine."

How can the day not promise joy when it begins with such a sentiment?

Tuesday 6 January 2009

The de-civilization of millionaires' row

Half-an-hour after midday, the slot occupied yesterday by the TWO STALWARTS was taken by a gentleman who would be central casting's perfect Mossad boss. Nobody was there to bother him.

The BOF feared that all steam had been exhausted - but he was wrong. Returning late in the afternoon, he found a crowd already gathering, albeit many of them the same faces as the day before. It looked initially as if Londoners returning home were ignoring the growing throng, hurrying away from an embarrassment on their streets.

But that, again, was proved wrong. They stopped, they talked, some even made their way back to the barricade entrance, joined in with the protest. How happy they would be, knowing that their faces were now installed on the police database, is another matter.

The crowd continued to grow, and with it the noise. Sad to relate that, even with the greater numbers, it is unlikely that their voices would be heard in the safely-cloistered embassy.

They came from Haringey,

they came from the sixties,

and they came from Orthodox Judaism.

Neturei Karta International do not believe that Jews can enter Israel until the coming of the Messiah. They are a tiny sect, but their consorting with the enemies of Israel brings them undue attention.

And here's the problem: this just protest against slaughter and destruction is riddled with hate. Yesterday, the BOF initially heard the chant as "Calm down, Is-rael!" His aging ears were mistaken. What seemed an intriguingly rational slogan was actually one of loathing: "Down, Down, Is-rael!"

It should have been a wonderful conjunction, those black-and-white scarves and those sombre homburgs,

but the Jewish hand holding the British Muslim Initiative placard is a hand as mired in disgraceful compromise as any US President's.

"My enemy's enemy is my friend" seems clever on first hearing, but watching the slavering of the resulting mongrel beast brings the realisation that it is far from that. 

Hate is never clever, it is crass, it is pointless, it is, above all, uncivilised. For anything to progress here, civilisation must take the upper hand.

Right now, there's no sign of that.

yellow peril

Comedy in the park: The pond edge sign is always there, the ice warning has been added recently. The ideogram is another matter. Any bof would recognise it as the predominant graphic to be found in a banana warehouse. It's the colour that gives it away.

The London Lowering Standard today told us it was MINUS TEN! Strange, then, that the Round Pond was only half-frozen...

Monday 5 January 2009

Come on, you London!

As this morning became this afternoon, the BOF returned to Palace Green, or as close as he could get. 

The Israeli Embassy cowers in a private road, festooned with traffic
 calming and permanent police blockades, where photography is banned, a situation close to ideal for a bullying coward.  

Even the Americans exist in a public square, though it's a relief to note that they're pissing off to Wandsworth and giving central London back to its inhabitants. 

This time, there was activity. One of the morning's stalwarts was still there, but she was frozen to the marrow and soon left. 

The major presence was the Met. Their vans, parked in threes, dominated the side streets and even Kensington Gore itself.

It was cold by today's standards, the protesting turnout was small (maybe 100 or so) and so most of the bobbies stayed in their nice warm battle-wagons. Some, however, couldn't resist the chance of a ruck. One over-enthusiastic officer had donned his balaclava immediately he hit the street, looking for all the world like one of the terrorists he's supposed to protect us from. A gentleman of the barriers leaned forward as he shouted his slogans. This was all that balaclava-man needed. A tiny scuffle ensued.

This did not go down well with his superior.  A bollocking was delivered.

The BOF believes it was noticed.

And here's the problem: it only takes one or two twats to cross the line at a moment of tautness for vileness to happen. Reacting to provocation is a fool's game, yet this is what they were here to protest about. 

The ironies abounded. Children have been obliterated in Gaza and, perhaps, Israel. And there were children here, bearing witness no doubt, but also being dragged into the fray.

As the evening drew in, the odd passing driver tooted his horn, a few pedestrians stopped to enquire what it was about ("Where is the Israeli Embassy, anyway?") and the chanting continued, through the obligatory bull-horn.

As the temperature dropped the Met went into cold-weather-kit, looking like the opposition at a fancy-dress party.

But all the while there was empty space. The boys in blue had clearly expected to see a larger crowd, looked almost disappointed - the Police Cameraman in his SWAT hat had done his job in a matter of minutes.

And the BOF was ashamed of London. You walked by, hurried on your way, turned your heads, and left the field for those stalwarts of the Mail, the Professional Demonstrators. All the talk that could be heard was about "next time" and "getting the others". True, there were some genuinely home-spun placards

but the majority were pre-printed, pre-used slogan guns, complete with URLs. 

Perhaps, as the week moves on, a few more might attend the 5.30 appointment with the death-dealers, and not leave this as the memorial for London's reaction to a bleaker place's misery.

Disappearing demo

The demo is an irrefutably good thing. Sometimes misguided, sometimes pointless, sometimes unnecessarily aggressive, it nevertheless stands as the visible peak of the iceberg of freedom. 

This weekend's attendance at the gates of the road housing the Israeli embassy seemed to show that freedom being exercised in true London fashion. Sad to relate therefore that the BOF has discovered demos to have been relegated to a weekend activity. 

True, today is the first day back at work after the absurdly extended Christmas break, but at 10.30 this morning, this was the scene:

Just two demonstrators. The BOF was told that "the Committee" would be there some time in the afternoon.

The Committee? Are we now so accustomed, so subservient, to bureaucratic systems that we only bother to protest when a committee tells us it's time? Do we now only care at weekends? Is every unemployed person in London indifferent to the murderous events less than half a world away? Is London no longer concerned about blinkered bullies blasting ballistics over borders and making the lives of both sides' civilians a terrifying misery?  Is it just last week's thing?

Shame on you, London. Get back out there.

Thursday 1 January 2009

New sheds

Yes, New Year's Day: so preferable to the debilitating eve.  The BOF witnessed one of his oldest contemporary friends undergoing change. Not massive, but significant, this was change for the good. 

We would have to describe his attitude towards this screen and the gubbins behind as, frankly, out of kilter until now. 

He was a techno-gom. Yet this evening he was seen to be absorbing the benefits of file sharing. Admittedly, when graffiti-boy started talking torrents, gomness strayed back into the eyes - BUT NO! - he would fight this! Suddenly, he knew: that stuff was really there. Not just the squirters, but the Seasons in the Sun, were sitting on their servers, just waiting for his call.

Maybe even now he is noisily discovering the grating reality of tunes and clips held for so long as unvisited icons. 

What better way to start the year than clearing rubbish from the loft of memory?

Listing from port

And a Happy New Year to all of you, too. Although bofs famously enjoy lists, there have been too many of them published in recent days, so we will call time on them here. The New Year, apparently, is meant to start with a clean sheet. Another list would just soil its virgin blankness. The BOF has read enough about who has been or might be the next big thing - parlour games to prove you've been paying attention is how he sees them, and that's their weakness: if you have been paying attention, you know this stuff anyway; if you haven't, IT'S ALL MEANINGLESS, merely an excuse for clever-dicks to whip their thing out.

Put it away!