Colin Smith is knackered and wheezy and runs like a constipated dachshund. This, he believes, puts him at a distinct disadvantage when it comes to competing in major athletic events, and so he is campaigning for new rules which will make conditions for athletes like him much fairer.
"Is it right that when I compete in a marathon I should be penalised because I have to stop for pizza every 400 yards?" he complains. "Is it fair that, just because I have fat legs, I am forced to clamber over hurdles, without so much as a footstool to assist me?" he continues. "And surely there has to be something wrong with the world when I am banned - yes, banned - from taking part in the pole vault because I happen to be ever so slightly morbidly obese?" he concludes. "It's high time we had a level playing field - especially when it comes to fell running."
To rectify the imbalance, Mr Smith has proposed that all other competitors should be 'professionally nobbled' - either physically, chemically or emotionally - in order to bring them down to his level. His suggestion has been called 'The Crap Olympics' by some members of the popular press, but Smith is nevertheless adamant that these changes are necessary. It will, he says, make international athletics more inclusive, more competitive and finally open up the sport to all manner of lardbuckets, mouth-breathers, pie-chuggers, clodhoppers, fartabouts, drunkards, dopeheads, bumpkins, sluggards, spongers, malingerers and deadbeats.
What's more, he believes that this will make for a far more entertaining spectacle for the paying punters, and in this respect he might just have a point.
Dr Bongo on...
I gather that if, when I'm out and about, your dog should run up to me, jump up and slap its muddy paws against my shirt, then begin ardently licking my face, then it's 'just being friendly'. But when I bound up to you and do the same, this is viewed as some category of assault.
Good day. My name is Dr Adolphous Bongo and I'm writing to you today from the relative safety of the saloon bar of The Horse and Jockey, which establishment is providing temporary sanctuary while my own surgery is off limits. Not that I'm keen to while away too many precious moments in my surgery at any time - as a doctor, I find I have far more important things to do than be a doctor - but presently the prospect is particularly unappealing as my staff have instituted a 'bring your child to work' day.
I wasn't consulted, of course, otherwise I would have crushed the idea forthwith and the whole thing would have died a death, along with whoever came up with the idea in the first place. No, the first I got wind of it was when I arrived and found the little fuckers running around all over the waiting room, smearing their jam-stained fingers across the walls, hanging each other out of the windows and each behaving with all the self-restraint of a feculent, clodhopping, diarrhoea-stricken ape.
At least the feculent, clodhopping, diarrhoea-stricken apes that find themselves with nothing better to do than hang around The Horse and Jockey are wise enough to remain downwind of me, clumped together with those of their own kind, exchanging bullshit opinions about cars they'll never own and airing political views which are distorted enough to have seen them hanged in less progressive times. No children in here to career into furniture, burst your eardrums with their insane squawking or defecate in the complimentary bar snacks. No dogs either, thankfully, although one cannot help but speculate that most mutts would be somewhat more circumspect when choosing where to deposit their manure.
On the subject of unsavoury habits, one has to ask why they find it so necessary to lick their own genitals with such a disturbing degree of enthusiasm. I'm talking about dogs now, not children, although it would not be of any surprise to me to learn that some youngsters are happy to sink so low, both figuratively and, indeed, literally.
But regarding dogs, is it, I wonder, something to do with their diet? Is the standard serving of ground-up bones, assorted offal and rendered fat so very distasteful that they are forced to enliven their dining experience with a quick go on the old meat and two veg? I admit that I have occasionally had the misfortune of dining in a restaurant where my own genitalia might be preferable to what was being sent forth from the kitchen, but a sense of decorum has thus far restrained me from interfacing with myself in such a manner for the entertainment and amusement of the general public.
Your average dog appears to have no such consideration for its fellow diners, sitting there with its legs splayed, going at itself with such horrifying vigour; it seems to treat the entire exercise as a piece of performance art, a gruesome ballet, the inevitable finale of which involves dragging its hairy arse along your carpet then slobbering in your lap. It will probably be expecting a biscuit at this point. Forgive me if I'm painting myself as something of a cultural elitist, but I just don't consider that entertainment.
Children, I understand, view this sort of thing as immensely satisfying. The more disgusting, unpleasant and scatological the spectacle, the more instructive they seemed to find it. As I speak, the various mutant offspring of my staff that are currently infesting my surgery are most probably rooting through every bin, waste receptacle and bucket, sifting through the choicest examples of gangrenous lumps and bumps that have recently been lopped off my most vile and cankerous patients.
Good luck to them. They have been warned not to poke around areas that don't concern them, so I cannot be held responsible for whatever misadventure should befall them. All I will say is that I knew those mantraps would come in handy and if I don't get back and find at least half a dozen of the little bastards writhing in agony, and a further brace or two busy gnawing off their own limbs in order to escape, then I shall be paying a visit to Traps-R-Us in the morning and demanding my money back.
Anyhow, I personally cannot see the attraction: they are filthy, witless creatures and I cannot understand why anyone would want to own one. Do keep up - I'm talking about dogs now, not children, although similar reservations apply. Not wishing to permit a mystery to prevail, I have personally made a study of dog owners and their motives.
Of course, it's very easy to conclude that anyone who chooses to own a dog is fundamentally insecure and requires a brainless, servile mutt at their side at all times so that they have something they can feel superior to. The only fly in the ointment for this theory is that in far too many cases the brainless, servile mutt is patently the more intellectually accomplished half of the partnership. How many times have I seen dogs throwing sticks for their owners? Exactly, twice - not many, I admit, but it's quite a spectacle, I can assure you.
Actually, I happen to be in sympathy with the dogs on this point. I'm not particularly interested in sticks myself, and doubt that I could be persuaded to fetch one, no matter what encouragement I was given. You threw it, you fetch it - that's very much my position on the issue.
So anyway, here's a suggestion for any dog owners, which I would urge you to give your full consideration: perhaps if you started throwing children for your dogs to retrieve, it might prove to be a little more sporting. Give me a call - I know where there are a number of them who are just the right size for hurling, and you would be doing me a great favour. Good luck.
Ever wondered how TV executives come up with exciting new gameshow formats? Course you have. Well, here at last is the answer - The Bleeding Obvious Prime Time Gameshow Generator.
So, you're getting yourself a cement mixer next Tuesday and you want to know the best way to look after it?
A cement mixer is a great addition to any home and will thrive in most environments. They are equally comfortable in a conservatory or bedroom, make a great talking point when displayed prominently in your living room and will cheer up the cupboard under the stairs no end. But they can also be a bit of a handful, especially if you're unlucky enough to get a stroppy one. What would be useful is some sort of handy guide on how to make the most of this magical new addition to your family. Here we go then...
As we just mentioned in that bit you were just reading, a cement mixer will be quite content wherever you put it... almost. There are one or two exceptions. For example, never keep a cement mixer in your bathroom because it will inevitably make a mess in the sink and use up all your clean towels. Just as important is to keep your cement mixer out of the kitchen as it will intimidate your toaster and strike up an unhealthy relationship with the fridge.
We're often asked what you should feed to your cement mixer. Well, chips, obviously. But apart from chips they enjoy an eclectic diet of washing up liquid, old spanners, rubble and rusks, VHS tapes (not Betamax), cheese and bubble wrap. In fact, you can throw pretty much anything down their necks but you'd be wise to avoid soiled clothing. They love it, of course, but it's likely to make your washing machine insanely jealous.
Cement mixers, as you probably already know, are pack animals and in the wild will hunt in groups of forty or fifty. Naturally they can be fairly boisterous and require a great deal of exercise. The National Centre for Cement Mixer Welfare recommends at least four six-mile walks a week for the average 3-10-year-old. Clearly this is unreasonable, so I wouldn't bother if I were you.
One thing that cement mixers simply adore is ballet. You wouldn't have thought it was possible for a dirty great cement mixer to leap nimbly from point to point, trip daintily across your living room carpet or perform spellbinding pirouettes, and indeed they can't. Obviously, that would be nuts. But they do love watching ballet, which is a pity since most of the more upmarket theatres refuse to admit them, so it might be a good idea to invest in a few DVDs.
In fact, you may find that there are many places where your cement mixer is not welcome and you should get used to being turned away from restaurants, shops and entertainment venues. In this day and age it is shameful that so many boarding houses display 'No Cement Mixers' notices in their windows, and some leisure centres still ban cement mixers from their swimming pools because of the risk of contagion. This is an extremely ignorant attitude as it is extremely rare for cement mixers to carry disease, especially as ever since 1958 it has been compulsory to vaccinate your cement mixer against drum rot, rim fever and crusted mortar syndrome.
One reason why cement mixers are so often refused admittance to many places is because of the amount of noise they make. This is perhaps understandable. They can be extremely noisy, especially when they are revolving at full whack. What makes it worse it they tend to do this at night - every bleeding night, in fact. It's enough to drive you nuts. Honestly, many is the evening that I wanted to put a pickaxe through its bloody switchbox. That's why I had to get rid of mine in the end - it was doing my head in. If you want my opinion I'd seriously think twice before committing yourself to getting a cement mixer. They're a pain in the arse. Anyway, it's your call.
Taken from The University of the Bleeding Obvious Annual 2018.
The University of the Bleeding Obvious Annual 2018
Taken from The University of the Bleeding Obvious Annual 2018.
The University of the Bleeding Obvious Annual 2018
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of the Bleeding Obvious
All material Copyright © Paul Farnsworth 2000-2017, and may not be reproduced without the express permission of the author. All characters, companies and organisations are fictitious, and any similarity to persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.