January 4, 2008


  1. Hello.

    Thanks for keeping me entertained at work.

    That is all.


  2. Once again, my home has made the paper. Always glad to hear fellati-esque news from my favorite beach, Fort DeSoto. Thanks for that.

    Also, thanks for posting that great editorial from the New York Times. It made me feel less sick for a second.

    Finally, FINALLY got to watch BIG TRAIN for the first time and beyond loved it. What a great cast! What is Amelia Bullmore doing now? She’s fantastic!

  3. What a fair argument you expressed by showing 49 seconds of out of context quotes from Ron Paul.
    I’m not a religious person, but from my standpoint you are just as fanatical as those who promote organised religion.

  4. Sorry, Shunt. If it makes you feel any better, I’ve been thinking about the clip, and it may well be that he’s talking to a room full of ‘special’ voters and he’s lying to them. And he STILL came fifth.

  5. Liked the Jenkem article. We used to play that sort of trick on bullies at school by telling them that certain fruit piths produced a high if you dried them out and smoked them. Sometimes we’d sell them dry and rotten orange or banana peel and feel all superior.

    Now, I’m wondering if I was encouraging a drug habit instead.

  6. Hello!

    Just to say my husband was very grateful for the Gosh-comic-shop-thing! Thankfully, the days are gone when he would spend what felt like 7 hours wandering around a comic shop whilst eternally patient me just stood around trying not to look bored and making small talk with the shop-keeper. Nowadays he just buys Previews and spends that 7 hours looking at that instead.

    Love the blog! Byeeeeee xx

  7. Shunt – everything is out of context if considering a wide enough frame of reference. The sentence is out of context of the speech, the speech is out of context of the day’s event, the day’s event is out of context with previous behaviour and form etc etc. What matters it whether what Ron Paul said was damaged or changed by what was omitted and in this case it isn’t. The “evolution is just another theory” line is a dangerous argument to propagate by someone in Ron Paul’s influential position. As he well knows, there is a vast difference between scientific theory and casual theory. To present Intelligent Design – which arrives at its conclusions through a non-scientific process of faith and belief – to be equal to Evolution since they’re both “just theories” is disingenuous at best. It’s like me saying that the “theory of Gravity” and my “theory that the compelling power of WTD is what draws all matter to the earth’s surface” are equal in stature, since there’s no absolute proof for either. Great big yarblockos.

  8. Thanks for the heads up about the new Jason. Sadly I don’t work in a bookshop anymore and these things often pass me be.

    Adding it to a end of month threat fest which also includes this:


  9. *treat-fest not threat-fest.

  10. I’m very relieved it’s not a threat-fest.

  11. Funnily enough, I was just getting into playing Call of Cthulhu again…

  12. Andrew Sheerin. Great stuff, thanks.

  13. More on Ron Paul..

  14. Sorry, link meant for above didn’t work.. Try


  15. I couldn’t agree with you more, Gosh is definitely the best comic shop in London, I always make a point of checking if what I want to buy is available in there first, purely because they deserve the support. The staff are great, always helpful and they really do make a point of stocking the interesting stuff that lies outside of the mainstream which, in the comics world, usually means material that would actually appeal to the real mainstream, the one that doesn’t usually read comic books.

    As we’re on the topic of comics, can I shamelessly plug the comic strip I’ve been colouring? It’s called Good Dog, Bad Dog and it’s written and drawn by the marvellously talented Dave Shelton, you’ll find it in the Comic which can be found in the Family section of the Guardian on Saturday. You can also read it online at:


    Unfortunately, the quality of the PDFs leaves much to be desired, we’re trying to see if something can be done about that.

    Whilst it’s aimed primarily at children I think there’ll be plenty over the next seven episodes for adults to enjoy too.

  16. http://news.bbc.co.uk/player/nol/newsid_7170000/newsid_7171300/7171358.stm?bw=bb&mp=rm&asb=1&news=1&bbcws=1

    I think you may appreciate this- possibly the best prank EVER.

  17. ‘Good Dog, Bad Dog’ is such a great title…

  18. Do you know about this website? On the offchance you don’t, check it out. It’s basically a seemingly unending flow of mesmirizing images found all over the web. There’s a blog, too, but I can’t stop looking at the visuals long enough to do anything else. That includes my job.


  19. I like the picture of that Mike Huckabee and his terrifying, massive offspring.

    Aren’t they those Beadles off Blackadder’s Christmas Carol?

  20. Great site, EatLa. thanks

  21. Shunt, Mr. Linehan did the kindest thing possible by reducing that bozo to a 49 second clip. The longer you let him talk, the worse it gets.

    Huckabee scares the crap out of me, but Romney scares me even more. I used to live in Massachusetts where he was governor. He’s a horrible man. I worked with veterans’ benefits, and one of the first things Romney did after taking office was unofficially freezing state veterans benefits. It was a nightmare. Some vets stopped getting their monthly pension checks.

    The good news about all the creationism nonsense is that since Dover, it’s unlikely that a court would uphold a schoolboard’s decision to allow ID or creationism in the classroom, but it doesn’t stop those lunatics from trying. If I wanted my son to learn magic instead of science, I’d use Harry Potter as textbooks.

  22. Here’s a link about the evolution debate in Florida so that I’m not entirely useless:

    I love this bit, “Other objectors, such as St. Augustine parent and education activist Kim Kendall, deny a religious motive but say they just want teachers to offer evidence that contradicts as well as supports evolution.” The only evidence that contradicts evolution is in your bible, Kimmy. I really need to leave Florida.

  23. Haven’t seen BILLY THE KID but my sometime co-writer Kris saw it at the Film Fest here and it was her favourite thing there. The story of how the documentary happened is pretty incredible — nobody gets that lucky!

  24. Wow, are there really no republican candidates running a NONreligious campaign? Paul claims to be a libertarian but he is really just a social ultra conservative. Like the rest it seems. Someone please correct me if I am wrong – I hope I am.

  25. While we’re on the topic, here’s a stop motion animation film of tetris played with humans.

  26. I was kind of interested in Ron Paul at first. I like his “stop interfering abroad” position, as well as some other stuff. What I don’t like is what I saw in that video. Even if he was playing to a religious crowd and the clip was slightly out of context (which I suspect was the case), I can’t support someone who hasn’t the balls to speak his mind honestly. As you can imagine, that makes voting for ANY politician difficult.

  27. […] .com. [image] […]

  28. Aethiesm Adoption – I assume that the judge is either a fundamentalist, or he’s up for re-election. Fortunately for the family they will the case on appeal, but its must be a lot of stress to go through, and very unfair on the child. I don’t think he’s born again, because they don’t believe you can make a choice on religion until you are 18.

    I showed this to my wife, and she erupted and wouldn’t calm down and stop talking about it for several hours (which given it was nearly midnight was a mistake).

    The very logic the judge uses means that someone who has no religion is the least likely to influence a person about their religious upbriging. And anyway, there was someone in the family who believed in god, just a lot of them :)

  29. Ron Paul, first and foremost, believes in the Constitution. Alright, so he may be a religious kook, nobody’s perfect. But I’m willing to overlook this considering he’s the only candidate, Republican or Democrat, who actually understands what America stands for: Freedom.

  30. Regarding atheists adopting, a good friend of mine from law school just completed a research paper on atheist adoption in the U.S. Her findings were very, very disturbing. There is very little government oversight with respect to adoption agencies, and family courts are often free to apply loose legal standards like “the best interests of the child.” Even though adoption agencies aren’t supposed to do things like religion matching and race matching, they do, and the statutes that govern them are often so broad and malleable that agencies can justify their practices under positively obscure rationales. I’ve research gay adoption issues, and it’s similarly disturbing. Many states have implicitly banned gay men and lesbians from adopting through exclusionary practices if not explicitly through statutes and case law.

    My friend is quite familiar with the case in the Time magazine story. If anybody is interested in her research, I can find out if she’ll let me host the file somewhere and I’ll link to it.

  31. hey, though, wait! I took the post down ’cause it was dated 1970. so no need for your wife to be upset, oliver. The participants have all moved on by now…

    very curious to see how it turned out, Rachel, so a link would be great.

  32. Is it just me, or is the image that Digital Spy using wonderfully inappropriate?


  33. And Noah, it’s all very admirable that he believes in the Constitution. But if he doesn’t have the balls to stand up for REALITY in front of a few Jesus freaks, do you really want him in charge?

  34. Here is a link to the text of the court case mentioned in the Time article:

    I looked up the actual case in Westlaw, and it seems that the version at that website is unabridged. Note that the New Jersey supreme court decided the issue, so that case is only legally binding in the state of New Jersey. Here is the summary of the case from Westlaw:
    “Proceeding on application to grant adoption. The Essex County Court, Probate Division, 112 N.J.Super. 326, 271 A.2d 27, denied application because prospective adoptive parents did not believe in Supreme Being, and parents and adoption agency appealed. The Supreme Court, Proctor, J., held that, absent special circumstances, adoption cannot be denied solely on ground that prospective adoptive parents lack belief in a Supreme Being or lack church affiliation, and that agencies may not constitutionally require of applicants for adoption membership in established religion; but that ethics and beliefs of applicants, including religion, may be considered as bearing on issue of moral fitness. The Court further held that where the sole ground for denying the adoption was the beliefs of the prospective adoptive parents regarding religion and it was clear from the record that they were otherwise fit, Supreme Court would grant the adoption in the exercise of its original jurisdiction.”

    I’ll post a link to my friend’s research if she gives me permission.

  35. Ron Paul stands for increasing free markets and capitalism, something was has only ever benefited you if you were American and rich. The US constitution, as Dennis Miller said (before, like Vader, he turned to evil), is a “two hundred year old todo list”. Ron Paul is a Republican trojan horse designed to sucker otherwise intelligent democratic voters. He is just as evil as the rest of those evolution-ignoring-intelligent-design-worshiping morons.

    Thinking about the constitution and stuff, for some reason an old Bill Hicks piece about burning flags comes to mind.

    “My daddy died for that flag!”
    “Really? I got mine for $5 at K-Mart.”
    “My Daddy died in the Korean war for that flag.”
    “What a coincidence, because this one was made in Korea!”

    Graham: Holy crap, you play Cthulhu? Man, I’ve not played that in years. Though with the way the world is headed I fear a daily need for a sanity check roll will be required soon. Lovecraft was a genius, and the only author whose material has genuinely freaked me out. (“At the Mountains of Madness” gives me the freakin’ willies.)


    And I realise this is most likely a pointless question probably, but it’s been on my mind today. In “Black Books”, I wonder if Graham can reveal who, if he can even remember such ridiculous minutiae, in the episode where Manny leaves, came up with the glorious line from Bernard “Without him it’s a just a yo.” As I think that was probably my favourite line of the entire three series’.

    Right, that’s enough to bore you fine people. Back to seeing if I can get on my favourite Team Fortress 2 server…

  36. I hate posting again so quick, but sometimes you just find something that makes your eyes bug out and you have to share it with good folk…

    I’m not even going to preface the link. You can read the link itself…


  37. Oh man, three posts in a row. I hate that. But my wife just ordered me to self-promote my latest blog entry on here (I routinely tell her stuff I see on here) as she nearly choked to death on an orange from laughing so hard. (Imagine writing the paperwork up on that one.)


  38. Hi Graham, on watching the IT Crowd again the other day it reminded me of a question I’ve always wanted to ask – how come Chris Morris’s accent keeps changing all the time? Was it designed to make Renholm’s character seem even madder, or am I missing something really obvious?

  39. Drood

    Not just the yo line, but the whole Manny leaving episode has to be one of the best pieces of comedy ever written. Totally surreal, but with an incredibly deep meaning and message which it doesn’t waste its time spelling out, because its too busy using it to drive the plot and the laughs. To think that a show can go from episode 1 where we meet the characters to episode 6 where every part of the show and the characters knits together in what is a seemingly logic progression of events to such utter chaos. Every other season was not quite as good, because it had already peaked. After that, any disruption to the status quo such as Manny threatening to leave was just a parody.

  40. I watched Michael Moore’s Sicko on Thursday night and was wondering what everone here thinks about it.
    A part of me completely agrees with his agenda but another, bigger part of me wants to smack him on the face with a rolled up newspaper for the way he argues his point.
    For instance, take the interview with a woman whose daughter died after being denied treatment, where best to conduct the interview than in front of a busy playground — Hmm.

  41. Drood,
    I couldn’t agree with you more about Ron Paul and the Republican party in general. His positions on immigration reform send me through the roof. He wants to end birthright citizenship for example. His decentralized approach to environmental protection is also completely unworkable.

  42. I love Gosh – I try and pay a visit every time I’m over in London, and dream of a day when an Irish journalist’s salary will allow me to afford a Ronald Searle lithograph. There’s nothing quite like it in Dublin.

  43. Rachel–it’s a great relief to know you’re in central Florida, too. You can’t think about leaving the state. Florida needs people like you! Don’t let the Nascar dads win, for god’s sake.

  44. Chris’s accent…ehm…my fault for not helping him push it one way or the other….”yo” line, cannae remember, I’m afraid…

  45. Nice to hear that story ended happily, Rachel. Thanks for that.

  46. Rachel: Thank god someone agrees with me. A lot of otherwise sensible places I frequent online seem to have this HUGE Ron Paul shaped blindspot and think the guy is great and are raving about him, and they seem oblivious as to how they’re being completely conned.

    Did not know about the end of birthright citizenship. That is horrendous. And I agree with EaLaSpada. It’s nice to not everyone in Florida is barking mad. Please start having lots of babies.:)

    Sicko: Yes, I’ve seen it. I lived in England my first 25 years and have been in Canada eleven years now. Canada’s healthcare is okay. The UK healthcare system is better IMO. (Prescription coverage for example.) Though I did not know just how awesome the French system was.

    This is what pisses me off with the universal healthcare debate. I see Americans banging on about how bad it is, when they clearly have no idea at all what it’s REALLY like. A lot of Americans I’ve come across who start on about how the US shouldn’t have it seem to be under the delusion that Canada has 19th century hospitals, and relies on leeches and trepanation to fix illness.

    I read a stat the other day that of all the personal bankruptcy claims filed in the US, a massively high percentage were due to illness. (Can’t remember the exact number, but it was well over 60%). Most Americans are one serious medical problem away from bankruptcy, even if they don’t know it. And that is those WITH healthcare policies, which in many cases aren’t worth the paper they’re written on. The HMO isn’t there to help you. They are there to protect their profits, and do their very best to get OUT of helping you in a time of need.

    That is what happens when capitalism and medicine mix. And a hell of a lot of Americans think THAT is somehow better than Canada and the UK’s system. Americans have basically been brainwashed.

    If you disagree, I am not getting into an argument on here and flooding Graham’s comments with nonsense, so your “rebuttal” will be cheerfully ignored.

  47. Drood, one thing I’ll say for Ron Paul is that he’s quite forthcoming with his agenda. If you Google his name, his official campaign website pops up first or second. He details his positions on a wide variety of issues. That’s where I found out he’s against birthright citizenship.I don’t understand his popularity.

    Mr. Linehan, you’re welcome! I can’t wait for season three of “The It Crowd” to come out. My husband and I are starting to have conversations that don’t involve television, which is never a good sign!

  48. Drood, I agree with you. Paul has also stated (on his website, I believe) that he believes Roe v Wade should be overturned, something he failed to mention when asked in an interview this past summer in the liberal-leaning massachusetts weekly, The Valley Advocate. What kind of “libertarian” believes in restricting personal freedoms?

    BTW Scribbles – those Huckabee kids are *totally* from Blackadder xmas carol. Great call.

  49. Huckabee is scary, but nobody in their right mind thinks otherwise. Ron Paul is a snake oil salesman. He may lay out his agenda on his site, but clearly, from people I’ve been reading, they’re clearly not reading it.

    Graham: Did I see what I think I saw in that video?!!!

  50. I love David Lynch, and am a big fan of his work, but the guy is a cranky bastard. I have an iPod Touch, and the screen is awesome. Guy needs some concept of scale. A small portable screen a few inches from you is largely the same, perception wise, as a TV across the other side of the room. I would rather watch a film on my iPod than on my pathetic 20″ TV, and I don’t see Mister Lynch ranting against crap TV’s.

    Hey, Lynch! How about you quit whining about the iPhone and sort out the bloody rights issues with Fire Walk With Me so we can finally get all the deleted scenes on DVD.

  51. Check out David Lynch’s Berlin lecture:


  52. Would love to watch that video Declan, but YouTube’s horrendous compression, the poor sound quality and the wobbly camera made me feel ill.:(

  53. That photo of the guys in the pool is insane!

  54. Just dug this up about the apparently beloved Ron Paul that so many otherwise sensible thinking people are considering voting for because they’ve been suckered.


  55. Drood, first of all, you’re posting way too many comments here. Not that I don’t appreciate all the links and whatnot, but…seriously, man, save some of it for your site!

    Secondly, I have to say, I’m with Lynch all the way on the small screen front. I’d hate to have seen ‘Fire Walk With Me’ on an iPhone.

  56. Sorry. I’ll ease off Graham.

    I’m not denying a big screen is good. But I think his hate for small screens is misplaced. Certainly wouldn’t BUY anything only in a format for the iPhone, but I have no problem ripping my own DVD’s to watch on it portably.

    I’ll shut up now.

  57. Yay GOSH! and Jason! And the lewd magician with the scared baby tiger.

  58. Hi Graham,

    Just dropping you a quick line to say I thought your interview on Tubridy’s radio show this morning was excellent. I look forward to seeing the behind the scenes show you were discussing. When and what channel is it on again?

    Ta very much…

  59. Thanks! It’s on at 10.15 on RTE.

  60. Great… That’s my evening sorted…
    RTE eh? THat means you suckers in the UK won’t be able to watch it… Mooo Waaaah Haaaah!

  61. Hi Graham,

    Really enjoyed the documentary last night. How do feel about it now that it’s out? It was great to hear your honest thoughts on issues like ego and wanting to prove yourself (and on reading comics and playing poker to inspire the creative juices…I’m guessing every office worker and clock-puncher in the country changed channels at that point in a fit of jealous rage)

    On another note, I have been wondering for a while if you have any thoughts on Donald Clarke, the film reviewer in the Irish Times? I think himself and yourself are the funniest humans Ireland has produced in many a year. He’s also a nerd like you (and all the rest of us who hang out here in this blog). I bet you’d get on like a house on fire.

  62. Hmm…I’d say reading is more productive than poker, but when I’m getting through a first draft, I do use poker as a reward for grinding on towards the end. If it’s any comfort to the office workers, any fun you might have is balanced by the terror of not being able to do it this time (my current state).

    Not familiar with Mister C but I’ll look out for him. What days is he in it?

  63. Lovely stuff last night. Nice to see modern Irish excellence being recognised, and a welcome change from all those blasted poets!

    I hear you’re moving back to England. Your Dublin tenure made me think it might be worth sticking around. Ah well, looks like it’s emigration again…

  64. He rules the roost in Friday’s The Ticket supplement as best I remember. I met him once, a lovely fellow. Favourite album is Heard It Through The Grapevine. I think that tells you what kind of character he is! One who likes Marvin Gaye, thats what. Not to be trifled with.

  65. He’s in the ticket alright. Quick bit of Donald Clarkiness from this week’s:

    “The comparative failure of The Golden Compass may also finally confirm one unhappy fact to the men who run the movies: nobody likes Nicole Kidman. I exaggerate, of course. Chesney Spanglehat III, the country and western star to whom the Kidbot has been manacled for the past few years, presumably still enjoys oiling her joints and replacing her batteries. ”

    Full article here, in which he displays (again) his Linehanesque hatred of funography: http://www.ireland.com/theticket/articles/2008/0104/1199313399610.html

    Btw, do you still play in angry fulltilt land? What games you play there? Or is that top secret? Does poker fund your scriptwriting addiction?

  66. Donald Clarke is the funniest journalist in the country right now – he’s one of the very few Irish journalists whose pieces I will always read, regardless of subject. I know him through the tiny world of features/arts hacks who have contributed to the Irish Times, and he’s a very nice chap.

  67. Just hit the ‘post comment’ link by mistake, before I could say that last night’s documentary was really interesting, particularly the info that you don’t really do what so many writers say they do – make themselves sit down and write every day for a certain time or word count whether they’re in the mood or not.

    I have to have a first draft of a (kids) book handed in in April, and unfortunately my habit of waiting until inspiration strikes before writing means that I still have about 20,000 words out of 40,000 to go. But I think in my case it’s mostly due to laziness and habitual procrastination – and the results aren’t exactly up to your standard…

  68. I spotted Father Ted in the background of a picture on page 102 in the (otherwise unremarkable) book Disapproving Rabbits by Sharon Stiteler.

    I love Why That’s Delightful, and only feel a little bit guilty that it takes you away from your work… and my work.

  69. Hi Graham,
    How’s the craic? A shot in the dark, a stab to the side and some salt in the wound.. I felt all these things as I listened to the scathing self-depreciating commentary you gave yourself on the Father Ted Commentary for chirpy burpy cheap sheep.
    I know you had said that your wife gave some input on your feelings for the episode, and i wanted to tell you that she (your wife) is completely WRONG about the episode and it’s obvious “frothyness”. You were right in the beginning when you said you thought at some stage that it was a strong episode. My favourite epiosde was ruined by your sneery comments, that have really stemmed from YOUR WIFE

  70. It is widely affirmed by many of my “tedhead” friends that it is a good episode. I kind of whodonnit with several outlandish references to the fact that only personal friends with a sheep would be able to tell it’s moods. How did you sunndely think that it wasn’t funny? it’s brilliant. Some class moments include.. Dougal taping the converstaion, Fargo boyle’s arse, Ted and Dougal in the same bed (one all-time gem), Ted listens to the ground for the beast, the scandal at a high profile SHEEP competition… the list is practically endless and your WIFE is overly critical. Slap yourself on the back for a job well dome. And also, congrats on the IT show.. PS Check out The Leisure Virus on u-tube.

  71. Hello there,

    just a wee message, when I put up the Neon stuff a while back I got a few comments/requests for some more so after a recent trip back to old Monaghan and another under then bed delve to the stacks of old magazines and comics I put up some more, like the great King Kong and Hitchcock interviews and the great one on the myths of Sam Peckingpah exposed! I especially like the one about him not using a camera.


    that’ll be all the linehan love for a while! must concentrate on putting more of my own comedy up, but just thought you all might like to see this stuff.

  72. Lay off the WIFE! ‘Chirpy Burpy Cheep Sheep’ is all right, and there are individual things in it I like, but it’s a show that makes me very glad we didn’t do another series. The show was getting too silly. The sheep mood stuff was too nebulous to hang an effective detective story on…that said, we got away with it because of the audience’s goodwill. Thanks for the kind words.

    And thanks for the extra Neon stuff, Lorcan!

  73. I’m gutted. Chirpy Burpy is my favourite Ted of them all. In fact for me, the nebulousness (yes, nebulousness) of the sheep’s mood as a main plot point made it even funnier. Surreal? Yes. Silly? I don’t think so.

    At the end when Ted is revealing how he solved the case Hercule Poirot style, the voice shouting ‘fucking hell’ amongst the gasps of disbelief made me laugh more than anything has a right to make anyone laugh. Brilliant.

  74. That was Graham’s voice! The best, you see.

  75. no matter how many times I see Chirpy Chirpy the ‘fucking hell’ bit never ceases to make laugh, as does the dougal bit…’instead of mouth, it’s got four arses’…

  76. My husband clued me into this, and I thought it was funny. The folks from Gizmodo went around shutting television screens off at a consumer electronics convention with a supercharged remote control.

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