Papa’s got a brand new bag

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’ve had a varied week. Yesterday (Sun) I ended up at the Banstead Village fete. I’ll be honest with you, before being sent to Banstead, I’d never heard of it but at least I now I know it’s in Surrey. I was there as part of my Summer job, (or is it now an Autumn Job?) I was supervising 10 young people I’d never seen before and in all likelihood will never see again.

To get to the fete I had to take a 30 min taxi ride, at the organisations expense. I’m not sure how much the fare was but I reckon the taxi company made more money from that journey, than I did from the day’s work. I can’t help thinking in terms of cost, it would have made more sense for them to send me home and get someone nearer to Banstead to do my shift. In many ways I’m more cost-effective when I’m home in bed than doing my job. I’m the equivalent of farmers who get paid, not to produce stock.

Also this past week I was described as “having no backbone”, ironically not directly by the person themself  but relayed to me by a third-party. So with this in mind, when was the last time you heard a negative thing said about you and what was it? Feel free to let me know via the comments button.

On Thursday I was at the Paralympic athletics. Prong 2 did say I should have competed, as I have no backbone. I’d told him abt the above comments, it wasn’t pure coincidence. The atmosphere was good at the stadium, especially when the British athletes won their events. I couldn’t help thinking that if I had 70 000 people cheering me on, whilst I was doing my job, it would spur me on to greater effort. To be fair I already give as close to 100% in every job I do. (You never know who is reading this blog)

On Friday, whilst watching the film ‘In Bruges’, the house opposite caught on fire. Thankfully no one was hurt and there didn’t seem to be much damage to the property, it probably helps that we live really near a fire station. One thing I will say about a fire is that it brings people together. Half the street came out to have a nose, not us though, we had In Bruges to finish.

Next week’s blog will take place on Tues as 3 Prong Attack are doing a comedy gig on Mon 17th at the Hope and Anchor, Highbury and Islington. 8pm £4 in.

And Finally… On last week’s blog post I mentioned how I was going to buy a new bag and as a man true to his word, I bought a new bag. One that could be best described as a brown ‘man bag’ or a lady’s brown hand bag. This bag is not without its teething problems as the bag is slightly less roomy as the previous one, so things don’t fit in as easily. And in addition to this, this bag has two poppers, whereas the previous bag had just the one. Meaning over the course of this bag’s life, I’m going to be spending twice as long opening and closing this bag over the last one? That’s time I could be spending more productively, or not.

Til next week, stay safe!

@anunknowncomic

Him with two temporary jobs

Hola. Hope you are well.

I sat down this morning to sketch out what I would write for this very blog post. I went to get my exercise book which I write down my comedy ideas. It wasn’t in my bag, which was weird as that’s where it normally is. Then I remembered that after work y’day we went for a meal and due in part to the buckle on my bag being broken some of the contents of my bag fell out under the table. I scooped up what I thought was everything, evidently  not, so this morning I rang the restaurant. Anyone who’s read this blog for any length of time will at this point realise that they didn’t have my exercise book, in fact they struggled with the concept of an exercise book. I don’t know why I bothered ringing up, I should have known it wasn’t going to be there. It’s quite annoying, firstly because it’s my fault, I should have checked that I’d picked up everything from under the table and secondly, because the notebook isn’t really any use to anyone other than me, so if someone found it, why wouldn’t they hand it in? Unless someone at the restaurant is keeping it for themselves, so if you see an Italian waiter doing material in my style, I instruct you to make a citizen’s arrest.

If losing my comedy notes wasn’t bad enough, I’m about to enter the worst period of my work life. Today is one of the two days I have off in September (the other being tomorrow), this is due to me working two jobs. I’m concluding my summer job, as well as  resuming my role as a TA (teaching assistant) in a school. This means I will be working in the school in the week and my other job at the weekends. If my life was a film, one, it would be a long film but secondly, Sept would be the pivotal point, where from this point forward my fortunes would change for the better. But as my life is not scripted by Hollywood writers, I imagine not much will change in October or November.

I say that but I do have an idea, to get out of my current situation and this involves …football kit men. I could expand on this but I think the tease is better than the actual story. If anything does come from this I will let you know.

And Finally… I thought I’d leave you on an up note (sort of) by posting three, 3 Prong Attack videos we did recently. They are v.short so won’t really eat into your time.

Here’s our tips on how to make it in radio (59 secs)

Here’s our thoughts on the return of Dallas (1m 10)

How to connect with 3 Prong Attack (24 secs)

I’m off to get a new bag and a new exercise book.

Til next week, stay safe!

@anunknowncomic

Kitchen Issues

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’ve been away for the last few days on my Summer job, away from London and away from all the news. In fact the first bit of news I saw was at the train station where the headline on the front cover of a tabloid, was all about Russell Brand dating Geri Halliwell. It made me wonder if the world had gone mad in my absence.

Also whilst away on my residential, I ended up eating rice krispies with a knife. I wasn’t doing this for some wacky experiment, it was just that our kitchen didn’t have any spoons. My initial plan was to drink it out of the bowl but that didn’t prove that successful but surprisingly the knife was a good substitute for a spoon. I’d recommend it should you ever find yourself in such a situation. Feel free to let me know of any kitchen utensil nightmares you’ve had and how you had to adapt? (Contact me via the comments button).

As part of their activities, the children I was in charge of visited an elderly care home as part of an inter-generational photography project. Whilst there I couldn’t help thinking there should be places like these for people who are in the late 20’s/30’s. A place of say 20 rooms and different communal areas. I imagine it would be good fun and it would be a place where people could socialise, which these days is a problem what with every one leading such busy lives. And as the people aren’t too young, there wouldn’t non stop parties. When I mentioned it to ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ she said “What would happen if people got pregnant?” Quite clearly they’d be out on their ear, this would be a baby free zone. ‘HWOPJ’ thought there may be legal issues. Next step for me is Dragon’s Den. I’m thinking about how much equity to give away.

Before going away I watched the film ‘Chariots of Fire’. For some reason I always thought this film was about Rodger Bannister and him breaking the 4 min mile. I know it has nothing to do with Roger Bannister, Roger Bannister isn’t even mentioned. I’m not sure how I got this so wrong. In addition to this, I recently found out Prince wrote the song Manic Monday for the Bangles, how had I not known this before now. Also this year I realised that my sister who’ve I’ve known all her life and Nelson Mandela who’ve I’ve been aware of for many years, share a birthday. Why has it taken me so long to be aware of this? I’m now starting to question if I know anything.

And Finally… On last week’s blog post, I mentioned how I tried to fix my fridge by replacing the fuse in the plug and how it seemed to work, which filled me with a sense of pride until it stopped working less than an hour later. On Friday, our new fridge was installed, where I learnt the plug that I thought was for the fridge, was not for the fridge but was actually the plug for the ignition to the cooker. I didn’t know this when the fridge arrived on the Thurs, so I unplugged the plug which I thought was the old fridge and plugged in the new fridge, only to be confused why the cooker wouldn’t light. I was cursing my luck, searched the internet for possible solutions, not realising the problem was me being an idiot.

Order has now been restored, although the new fridge despite being the same size as the old one doesn’t have a freezer compartment. So we are currently without a freezer, does anyone else not have a freezer? Are we the only people in England without a freezer?

Til next week, stay safe!

I predict a Pussy Riot

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’ve got 5 days off from the intensive summer job I’ve somehow found myself in. I’m not sure how much can be read into this, but the  book I’m currently reading is, ‘How To Get A Job You’ll Love’. It’s an interesting book but I don’t feel it’s the kind of book you can read at lunchtime surrounded by your work colleagues. It might send out the wrong message, (or the right one).

In other news, our fridge is on the blink. It seems to come on and off whenever it likes, which is not ideal for any long-term food planning. Having tried turning the switch on and off and fiddling with the thermostat, I thought it might be the fuse in the plug. I don’t think the problem is ever the fuse but when people are out of other suggestions, the fuse gets mentioned. It’s basically the act of a desperate man. So on Thurs night, I went in search for a fuse, which is not as easy as you may think. It doesn’t appear fuses are as popular as they used to be, maybe there’ll be a resurgence. Anyway, on my return I fitted the fuse in the plug, plugged it back in and to my surprise, it started working. I felt quite a sense of achievement, pleased that I’d managed to identify the problem, source the fuse and ultimately save the day. That feeling didn’t last too long as within the hour, the fridge had stopped working again. Meaning what I probably already knew, it was something more serious than the fuse. I could have saved myself a fair bit of effort and time if I’d gone with my initial instincts.

If I didn’t feel worthless enough, what with my handyman skills falling short, on Saturday morning, whilst watching a feature on backwards running, on BBC breakfast, I discovered that Garret Doherty ran a half marathon backwards in a time of 1hr 40. I have run one half marathon in my life, last year, where I did a fair bit of training for it and also finished with a time of 1h 40. The difference is I was doing it running forward. Before I knew about Garret’s achievements I felt good about my time, now I’m not so sure. Cheers Garret and cheers BBC Breakfast.

And Finally… Arguably the biggest talking point of the last few days has been the jailing of three members of Pussy Riot, for two years, for performing a protest song against Vladimir Putin in a church. Big names such as, Sir Paul McCartney, Madonna,  have got behind the campaign to free the women, as has Kate Nash. News coverage of this story has been global and it got me thinking why? There are other people around the world who are wrongly serving prison sentences, due to their political views yet they get little or no press attention. The only explanation I have, is that people like to say, ‘Pussy Riot’. It’s the only time we, young or old, can  legitimately get away with using this phrase and so we’re not going to waste the opportunity.

Til next week, stay safe! (Due to work commitments next week’s blog will be on Weds)

@anunknowncomic

How do you break your leg running?

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’m not too bad although I have come back from a pretty intense 5 days, doing my new job, the first bit involved me being responsible for young people during their residential. I wouldn’t say it was hard work, “It’s not like going down pit” but the hours were long. I had to wake the children up at 7am, make sure they’d eaten some breakfast and that they’d packed lunch and after a day of activities I had to supervise the cooking of the evening meal and then make sure they were in their own rooms by 10:45 and then stay up til midnight ensuring there were no incidents or people trying to leave their rooms. My role was essentially a mix between a Teaching Assistant and a parent, without the 16 yrs of them knowing you as their parent. My role continues in a slightly different capacity in the next few days and then I repeat the process with a different group in a couple of weeks. By the time I’m back at school in Sept, I might be the only person in education who will see it as a breeze. I say that, I give myself 2 days before I feel knackered.

Starting this job last Fri, meant that I missed the last couple of days of the Olympic games. It also meant I started the Olympics in Paris and ended it in Brighton, with women’s football in between. It’s lead to a slightly skewed view of the Olympics. I did get to see some of the closing ceremony, which did seem a little random. It was nice however of Liam Gallagher’s band Beady Eye to play their new single, ‘Wonderwall’ I believe it was called.

One of the more remarkable stories of the Olympics involved USA 4x400m relay runner Manteo Mitchell, who broke his leg 200m into his race and with another 200m to run continued because he didn’t want to let his team-mates down. What was more remarkable is that he did it in 46.10secs, which is better than what I can do with two functioning legs. It does beg the question, how do you break your leg running? I do think the Olympic committee should take advantage of this and start introducing races for people with broken legs. I’d definitely watch.

Away from the Olympics and I noticed that Ant and Dec were getting a bit of stick from people on Twitter (where else) because the new series of Red or Black is to be sponsored by Wonga.com. The criticism being, Wonga.com with their astronomical interest repayments causes misery to many families. It did make me wonder how much money would have to be on offer before you allowed Wonga.com to sponsor what you do? And secondly, Red or Black is getting a second series!! It’s a show that is essentially a glorified Heads or Tails. I’m not having a go at ITV because it has its place but they have Red or Black and BBC 2 have University Challenge, spot the difference.

And Finally… In honour of Kevin Pietersen, who was dropped from the England cricket team for allegedly slagging off his team-mates, when has slagging off your colleagues backfired on you?

Til next time, stay safe!

More Peppa Pig, less women’s football

Hola. Hope you are well.

If you are sick of the Olympics and thought you’d click on this page for some respite, then apologies as I will be referring to it throughout this blog.

Firstly, I have to say I have made my debut at the Olympics, as yesterday, ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ and I went to Wembley to watch the semi-final of the Women’s football, Japan vs France. It turned out to be a good game, 3 goals and a missed penalty. The crowd was very family friendly and I learnt, from the couple in front of me, that the best way to miss large chunks of the game is to take a small child and have to keep nipping off, to appease the child, as 90 mins of football isn’t stimulating enough. More Peppa Pig, less women’s  football I’m guessing.

The good thing about getting Olympic tickets is that you get a free travel pass with your tickets. The pass allows you to travel free from zones 1-9. Zone 9? I didn’t even know there was a zone 9, where is it… Birmingham? (That’s a London travel zone joke, I may have been in London too long)

One of the good things about being dual heritage is that on Saturday when Jess Ennis, Mo Farah and the long jump fella won gold, I was British, a day later when Usain Bolt won the 100m, I was Jamaican, thanks to my mum and just to let you know if Trinidad do anything I will be claiming that as well, courtesy of my dad.

Other things I’ve liked about the Olympics, included the badminton players who deliberately decided to lose in order to get an easier match in the next round, It slightly backfired when they got chucked out of the comp. No match was probably easier than they were hoping for.

I also liked the hypocrisy of the American Swimming coach,  John Leonard,who basically said Ye Shiwen the 16 year old Chinese swimmer who won gold must have been on drugs but failed to say anything when his own 15 year old swimmer Katie Ledecky,  went on to win gold. I suppose that was down to hard work and good ol’ American spirit. Innocent til proven otherwise mustn’t have reached John Leonard.

I also like the fact the venue that is known the whole year round as the O2 Arena, is suddenly being called the North Greenwich Arena. I can only assume O2 are not an official sponsor. It’s what the Olympics are all about.

And Finally… away from the Olympics. A few weeks ago on this blog, I mentioned how we brought back a paella dish from Valencia last summer and have yet to use it. Well this week, almost as if to make a point, ‘HWOPJ’ made paella. The only prob was that she somehow forgot to use the paella dish, so we are still to use it. it’s all fun, fun, fun at our flat.

Til next week, stay safe! (Due to me being away doing a new job, next week’s post will be on Weds)

Is the Queen in Equity?

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’m back from my hols, Bruges and Paris, all went well and we didn’t bring back any kitchen utensils (see last week’s blog post).

In Paris we went to the places you’re supposed to, the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and a cemetery, where randomly Jim Morrison, Oscar Wilde, Marcel Marceau and Edith Piaf are laid to rest. Although when I mentioned in passing, going to the tunnel where Princess Diana had the car crash, ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ said that would be ‘sick’. Too soon perhaps.

With the Olympics being in London and me now living in London, it was no surprise that I was in Paris, when the opening ceremony was taking place. Opening ceremonies are generally bonkers but even more so with French commentary (if you’re not a French Speaker). If that wasn’t odd enough mid way through, the Queen turns up in a skit with James Bond. If I were the Queen, I would have had to remind the organisers that I am the Head of State. After all she’s not some shmuck, trying to resurrect her fading career, she’s the Queen. At the very least, I hope she got paid Equity rates for her acting role.

The 4 hour ceremony was wrapped up with Sir Paul McCartney singing, ‘Hey Jude’. After what happened recently it would have been funny if someone had cut his mic.

Now I’m back in England, the big Olympic story is about the number of empty seats at some of the events. When I do comedy, here in London, they are generally held in the upstairs of pubs and although the capacity my not be massive, it does mean that the venue packs out easily and creates a good atmosphere. So if Lord Coe is reading this, my suggestion is to move some of the events to the upstairs of pubs. Or he could re-issue the tickets and allow the people to enter a complicated ballot system, where they’re sure to not get tickets for the event they wanted to see.

And Finally... the Olympics wouldn’t be the Olympics without the thoughts of the 3 Prong Attack radio show. Below are a few short vids.

Here’s our Olympic Competition (1 min 46)

This is our insight into the games  (1 min 12)

These are our Olympic predictions (1 min 11)

Enjoy!!

Til next week, stay safe!

Sunday Blogging Sunday

Hola. Hope you are well.

Sharp eyed readers may have noticed that this blog has been published on a Sunday. In this blogs history, I’ve mainly blogged on a Monday (as is my intention), occasionally I’ve had to blog on a Tuesday and very rarely I’ve had to put it back to a Wednesday but in all my time doing this blog, I’ve never blogged early and wrote it on a Sunday, until today. Not one to overstate things, but THIS IS HISTORY!!!. Technically, I could have written the blog up, saved it as a draft and then published it tomorrow, but due to the fact I’m going away early tomorrow morning and because our internet connection is temperamental, I thought I would avoid stress on this occasion.

In addition to blogging on a Sunday, I also reached another milestone on Friday, when I completed a full academic year as a TA (teaching assistant) in the one school. The last day of school, was somewhat weird in that everyone was happy, the children were happy, the staff were happy, people were smiling, it was nice to be part of it. I’m sure the reverse will be true on the first day back in Sept.

Talking of Sept I should be back at the same school, which is good news. I’ve also managed to secure some work during August, again working with children. Part of my role involves working on my weekends in Sept. So between the two jobs I will be working 7 days a week during Sept. I’m not sure how this has happened. I’ve always attempted to have an easy life and now I’m working 7 day weeks. It just goes to show having an easy life, isn’t as easy as it first appears. And just for good measure Prong 2 has booked the 3 Prong Attack (my double act) in for a gig in Sept.

I can’t really complain, I might try from time to time, and like I said at the top of this blog, I am going on a mini holiday tomorrow. ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ and I also went away this time last year to Valencia, the home of Paella. On our last day there, we went to a market, where ‘HWOPJ’ wanted to buy a paella dish, I wasn’t so sure of the merits of adding to our luggage with something we could buy in London. Anyway, after the conversation went back and forth, we ended up bringing the dish back with us. Can you guess how many times we have used this paella dish in the subsequent year?? Answers on a postcard to Julian and ‘HWOPJ’ have yet to use the Paella dish, comp!

And Finally… we watched ‘The Graduate’ last night, for the first time, so with this in mind, feel free to let me know if you’ve ever had intimate relations with your partner’s parents.

Til next week (and a day), stay safe!

Two idiots and a pop up tent

Hola. Hope you are well.

With 11 days to go before the Olympics start it’s good to see everything is in order, apart from security that is. It’s not as if the organisers have had 7 years to plan this. It does seem odd that it was only with two weeks to go that G4S realised they were well under staffed to cope. You’d think that this might have been flagged up a little sooner. I’m sure if Lord Coe wanted, he could find people in the East End of London who would be prepared to take care of security and they’d be cheaper than what G4S are charging.

Now on to ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ who was at the most controversial music gig of the year. I’m of course referring to the Bruce Springsteen gig, where the council pulled the plug on Bruce and Sir Paul McCartney, who’d turned up to perform a couple of songs. A lot of people seemed to put the blame on the council, the general feeling being that they were being mean-spirited and killjoys. I on the other hand would like to praise the council, as rules are rules, even if you are ageing rockers. Bruce was on stage for over 3hrs, which although I congratulate him for his value for money, I would also say that if he can’t fit his set into this time frame, then maybe he should go on a time management course.

Naturally, I don’t really care about Bruce-gate (as I’ve just named it) but it didn’t stop me from posting this on my Twitter page

“I’m with Westminster council. Rules are rules. What Mr Springsteen and Mr McCartney need to consider is Health and Safety!!” Unusually for my tweets someone responded, a random in fact, which was quite exciting, he asked “What was the health risk?” I didn’t reply, as these kind of things can often escalate into a slanging match, plus more importantly I couldn’t think of a witty response.

And Finally… On last week’s blog post I mentioned how I had some difficulty putting down our pop up tent. At one point during my difficulties, Prong 2 (from 3 Prong Attack) came round and instead of helping, decided to film me. It’s probably too long for the attention span of those that trawl the internet but why not sit down with a cup of tea and a couple of biscuits and watch two idiots and a pop up tent.

Til next time, stay safe!

Tennents in the Park

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’ve had an interesting week, mainly revolving around T in the Park. preparations for T began a few days before the festival, when ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ and I decided to try out our pop up tent in the living room. What we found out is we could get the tent up but we couldn’t get it back down. I did what I normally do in such a situation, I left it a few days and hoped that would sort out the problem. Surprisingly this approach didn’t work. After that I rang the helpline, I’m not sure the man, manning the phone was too happy to receive the call as he was “just putting his coat on to go home”. Firstly, if he didn’t want to take the call, he shouldn’t have taken the call and secondly, I can’t imagine the tent helpline is overly swamped with calls. One helpful tip he did give was that you need to force it, even if it doesn’t feel like it. Armed with this knowledge and the online video, I was able to get the tent down. I know this might be a little deal to most people but I can’t tell you how satisfied I was with my achievement.

So with the pop up tent unpopped, we were ready for our festival. Mentally, I was prepared for it to be terrible, weather wise, and I wasn’t disappointed on that score. Over the weekend, I got familiar with the different textures of mud, from the ultra thick mud to the really liquidy mud. But as I had prepared for it to be terrible and because it was, meant in reality it wasn’t too bad. And even the camping side of things wasn’t that bad, having said that after 3 nights, even London seemed appealing. I can’t help feeling if I were a fugitive and had to live rough in the woods, it wouldn’t be that long before I turned myself in. (Let’s hope it doesn’t come to this)

As for the bands we saw, it was a bit like a Manc Band Bingo as we saw, the Stone Roses, Noel Gallagher, Happy Mondays, New Order, and Elbow (technically from Bury). One thing I was impressed with was that despite the crowds enjoying the acts they weren’t nutters. Although, as is the way with outdoor music events, some people thought it would be a good idea to throw some of their unfinished pints into the crowd. I couldn’t help thinking, you wouldn’t do this if you were in the pub. If you’d reach the point where you didn’t want anymore of your drink, you might offer it to a friend or leave it for the bar staff, what you wouldn’t do is lob it across the pub.

Whilst we were at the festival, Andy Murray was playing the Wimbledon final and oddly in this era of technology, we found out the result when we saw it pinned up, outside a Tea shop. What does feel weird is that before we went away, the public seemed indifferent to him by the time we’d come back he’d become a national hero. And what had he done to achieve this? He’d fought a good fight, lost and then cried, the perfect combo for us Brits.

And Finally… what have I learnt from my time at T in the Park? Apart from reaffirming that Bez is the luckiest man in music, it’s that my bladder isn’t as good as it used to be.

Til next week, stay safe!