Sunday, November 30, 2014

The Lion Wheeks Tonight

Last Friday my male staff in his capacity as an African Travel Specialist gave a short talk on African travel and wildlife at a nearby retirement village.  At least it was supposed to be short, maybe half an hour or forty minutes.  He had slides of various African animals by means of which he was to explain to his audience the many special and unique adaptations that these creatures have evolved.  Then, at the last minute, just before he about to leave home he looked at his small herd of cavies and thought to himself "What a great idea! I'll take the boys along with me. They do look a little like certain African animals in the right light and it'll add a certain je ne sais quois to my talk."  As good ideas go this ranks alongside George Dubya's "Let's invade Iraq" idea and John Huston's "I know! We'll cast Sylvester Stallone as the goalkeeper in Escape to Victory" idea.

So the four guinea pigs were crammed into their carrying cages with an hour's supply of cucumber slices and were loaded into the Hyundai Getz for the trip to the retirement village.  Once there my male staff set up his slide show and put the four cages on the floor facing the empty chairs which would soon be filled with interested senior citizens.  Ten minutes later my male staff's audience started to arrive and took their seats.  When it was apparent that nobody else was coming he made a start.  He doesn't do a great deal of public speaking and was a little nervous.  Luckily he remembered the old trick of imagining he was naked to calm his nerves, only to find that this method didn't really help because he kept having the urge to cover his dangly bits with his script which made it very difficult to read unless he held it upside down and then bent double with his head at groin level.  This of course made it difficult to undertake the other tip for good public speaking - that is to find a friendly face in your audience and address them.  After ten minutes of this he remembered that he was supposed to imagine that it was the audience who were naked, not him, and things became a little easier after that.

Halfway through my male staff's talk, just after he'd finished explaining the differences between black and white rhinos one of the elderly gentlemen in the audience raised his hand.
 "Yes sir." Said my male staff. "You have a question?"
The man stood up a little creakily. "So, what you're saying is that this isn't actually the Tai Chi class."
 "Errrrr, no it isn't." Answered my male staff.
 "Bugger!" Exclaimed the old gent. "Got the wrong day again." He and half a dozen others then stood and left the room muttering things like "Silly old goat, I told him Tai Chi was Mondays but he wouldn't have it."

My male staff pulled his thoughts together and continued as a photograph of a cheetah appeared on the screen behind him.  "The cheetah." He said.  "Unlike the other big cats - the lion and the leopard, the cheetah hunts only during the day and as everyone knows, it is the fasted land mammal on the planet. Providing you don't count my wife when she sees a shoe sale." Nobody laughed but some folks  in the audience nodded, though it was hard to tell if they were asleep or agreeing with him.  He continued.  "Unlike all other cats, cheetahs are unable to retract their claws and in this respect they are more like dogs."  At this point a grey haired lady who was knitting while listening to my male staff raised her hand.
 "Yes madam?" Said my male staff a trifle anxiously after the last question.
 "Are the other boys joining you soon?" She asked.
 "Sorry madam, I'm not sure what you mean. What other boys?"
  "The other boys!" She said as though my male staff was a bit thick. She had a point of course. "The other strippers. The rest of Manpower.  Are they coming out soon and bringing some music cos this is getting a bit boring?  When are you going to start getting your kit off?
Instinctively my male staff covered his groin with his script again.  "I think you might have made a mistake madam." He said.  "I'm a travel agent, not a stripper."
 "Oh thank heavens" said the lady, picking up her knitting.  "I thought you were a bit fat, but then I supposed that they might not be able to get the good looking blokes these days.  Come on girls.  Manpower must be next week. Lets go to the pub."  With that she and eight other elderly ladies left the room commenting not so quietly on the poor state of male male staff's physique as they trooped out.

That left just four people in the audience, one of whom was snoring, but my male staff was determined to get them excited with his grand finale.  "I expect you've all been wondering what I have in these cages in front of you." He said, pointing at the four carrying cages.  Three blank looks and an extra loud snore indicated that they weren't wondering that at all.  "The cages contain my guinea pigs," he said grandly, "and each of them looks amazingly like an African animal.  Of course, you'll have to use your imagination to scale them up a bit, but it will give you an idea of what the real thing looks like." He released Tom who waddled out and sniffed the air.  Tom looks very much like a porcupine.

Next he released Alfie. Immediately Alfie climbed up on top of his carrying cage.   "As you can see, Alfie here likes to have a good view of things. He looks rather like a very fat meerkat." Said my male staff.  Alfie glared at him with his red eyes.


The next guinea pig to be release was Baci.  "Baci here has a very similar shape to a hippo and in fact if you scale him up, his front teeth are about the same size as those of a hippo.  Baci yawned on queue.


The last guinea pig to be released was Toby.  "Now," said my male staff.  "You will notice that Toby doesn't really resemble any kind of African animal, but if you stand up." My male staff waited for his audience to stand, but nobody had any intention of doing so.  "If you were to stand up," continued my male staff, "you'd see that from above he looks uncannily like the snow flecked slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro."

My male staff was just about to wrap up his talk when the old gent who was snoring awoke with a loud snort.  This sent Tom, Alfie Baci and Toby into a panicked stampede around the room.  "Don't worry folks." Said my male staff.  "They are just demonstrating the great wildebeest migration across the Serengeti.  Obviously you'll have to use a little imagination, but you get the idea. Well, that concludes my little talk on African wildlife.  I hope you all enjoyed it."  He waited for applause.  There was none.
One of the old ladies piped up.  "Excuse me young man, but your brown wildebeest is humping the fluffy one's head and the white one has just done a large mound of poo under my chair."  She peered under her chair again. "Oh!" She said.  "It's okay. Mount Kilimanjaro has just eaten it."


Do you think I look like a nippo? I don't think I look like a nippo at all.  They are big fat smelly things wot snort and grunt and fart.  Well okay I do fart sumtimes, but I never grunt or snort.  I'm like reely kross with Uncal Billy's male staff for saying I look like a nippo.  In facked I've harf a mind to soo him for deffamyn difamminash deffamminayshun being rood.  Ennyway I look more like a lyan.


Sunday, November 23, 2014

Good In Bed

What do you think about when you wake up at two in the morning?  You know what its like.  For some reason, nothing you can put your finger on, your eyes suddenly spring open and you're wide awake.  It's pitch black, the crickets are chirping and you know it's going to be at least an hour before you can drop off to sleep again.  What goes through your mind?  I know what goes through Baci's dirty little testosterone fueled mind because he has the callouses on his paws to prove it.  My female staff often thinks of her late Mum and remembers things that have happened over the last few days that she'd like to tell her about, but will now never be able to.  That's a little sad, but my spirit reminds her that her Mum is still there with her and already knows all the things she wants to say.  That makes her feel better and she soon goes back to sleep.

My male staff's Mum has been gone a little longer, so he often thinks of me when he wakes up.  He clenches his fists in frustration when he recalls the puncture the stupid Mercedes suffered when they were on their way to visit me in hospital the day before I crossed the Rainbow Bridge and how it prevented them from seeing me one last time.  He often has to blink away tears at that memory, but then my spirit nips the inside of his thigh and makes him think about something happier like the time he won six dollars in the lottery, or the day that Margaret Thatcher resigned as Prime Minister.  The latter has duel benefits.  Thatcher's resignation cheers him up and thoughts of her replacement - John Major send him back to sleep.

On the rare occasions when thoughts of John Major don't send him off he tries counting backwards from a thousand.  I don't know why he persists with this because it never works.  He'll get to seven hundred and forty three, fall asleep, and then moments later wakes up thinking "Damn it! I lost count, where was I?"  Then he has to start all over again.  By all accounts my staff's bedroom is a pretty lively place, though not necessarily for the reasons you might be thinking of - honestly! You're worse than Baci.  My female staff has always said that my male staff is very good in bed; that is, he goes straight to sleep as soon as he lays down.

There is quite a lot of action there however.  My female staff has very vivid dreams and often wakes my male staff with a variety of loud yelps and squeals.  Once she was dreaming that her frantic sister was twisting her arm, it was so real that she lashed out to free it and elbowed my male staff's nose.  In addition to this he's been kneed in the testostricles, kicked in the shins and head-butted.  Fortunately for my female staff my male staff's dreams tend not to provoke such a violent reaction, though she did once wake to find him sitting up in bed staring at her.  That would have really given me the creeps, as indeed it did her.  For a week after that she slept with a baseball bat for self protection until my male staff pointed out that given the nature of her dreams he was the one who was more likely to need the baseball bat.

It's not so much his dreams that make my male staff an interesting sleeping partner, but his leg cramps.  These tend to strike at two or three in the morning and most of South East Queensland knows when it happens.  There's a loud agonised scream of "Ahhhharrraaaarrrrrrgh!" Then "Ah ah ah ah aaaarrrrrggghhh!" followed by a loud THUMP. This second exclamation is because he can't untangle his leg from the bedding and the THUMP is him falling head first out of bed with one foot still wrapped up in a sheet.  Usually by this time my female staff has woken and turned over to find herself staring at my male staff's naked backside sticking up in air.  Fortunately for her it's usually too dark to see much detail so she's not scarred for life by the experience, merely put off her breakfast.  Then, after a few moments of scrabbling about on the floor wrestling with the sheet my male staff will free himself and commence the next stage of the operation, namely hobbling around the bedroom doing his famous irate seagull impersonation - "Faaaaaaaaaark! Faaaaaaaaaark! Oh faaaaaaaaaaaaaark! Ow ow ow ow ow ow faaaaaaaaaaaaark!"  He say's it's like someone's got his leg in a vice and is bending it in an attempt to snap it in half.  I'm not sure how he knows what that feels like, maybe my female staff has tried doing that to him in one of her dreams.

Next comes the groaning and stretching stage during which he braces himself against a wall and tries to relieve the cramp by stretching the offending muscle.  Usually this is accompanied by quieter moans and groans with only the occasional "Faaaaaaaaaaark!"  At this stage one is tempted to think that the evening's entertainment is all but over, and indeed often it is.  However, on more than one occasion instead of leaning on the wall, in the dark and in pain he's leaned against the sliding fly screen door, which unsurprisingly tends to give way, sending him sprawling naked outside onto the deck much to the alarm of the possums who are often there raiding the bird feeders in the small wee hours. This is particularly entertaining when it's raining and the deck is slippery because he then scrabbles about on all fours like a puppy on a linoleum covered floor, his hairy bum shining wetly and oh so romantically in the dim, sub-tropical, pre-dawn light.  Eventually he'll scramble to his feet, which really frightens the possums and while they scamper off to find a safe tree in which to hide from the pallid, dripping monster before them, his cramp will return and we have to endure the hobbling "Faaaaaaark!  Faaaaaaaark! Oh faaaaaaark! Ow ow ow ow ow ow ow faaaaaaark!  stage all over again.

After a while the cramp will cease and he'll try to get back into the bedroom, stepping over the destroyed fly screen door and muttering something about getting the "faaaaaaarking thing" fixed in the morning.  However, there's no way my female staff will have him coming back in the bedroom dripping wet from the rain and ruining the bedroom carpet.  "Go round to the front door." She says.  "I'll let you in there and you can go to the bathroom and dry off."  Wisely, he obeys and trudges off in the nude around the house in the rain to the front door thanking his lucky stars that they have no nearby neighbours.  Of course, by the time he gets to the front door my female staff has fallen asleep again and ringing the doorbell has no effect whatsoever, mainly because it hasn't worked for two years and when nagged my male staff say's he'll get around to fixing it soon.  So he bangs like crazy on the door for half an hour before my female staff wakes up and opens it for him.  "Why didn't you just ring the bell?" She asks looking him up and down. "Cold out is it?" She says.  Half an hour later my male staff is dry and back in bed.  The room is quiet with just the sound of soft snoring. Then - Ahhhharrraaaarrrrrrgh!" Then "Ah ah ah ah aaaarrrrrggghhh!" followed by a loud THUMP.

This kind of thing happens all the time and not only when they are at home.  Often they've been staying at a hotel and had similar problems and had to endure the nudges and winks from the young couple staying in the room next door or if its an older couple, disapproving glares and tuts.  They've given up apologising and trying to explain.  "Sorry about all the noise last night, but its not what you think.........."

I don't think I like wot Uncal Billy is incinerating.  I don't have kalluses on my poors at all.  Well I do ackchooly but they are from like all the hard werk I do.  Ennyway Uncal Billy can't tork.  His staff are always telling me abowt wot he'd try to do to paw Uncal Badger.  How he'd weight for Uncal Badger to be pre-okkyew  pre-occupide  pre-ock  distrackted by a bit of basil or sumfink and then kreep up behind him and like do wot I did to that pumpkin in the soopamarket.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Not The G20

If Britain's Sun newspaper was printed in Queensland, which thankfully it isn't, this Monday's headline would scream "PHEW! WOT A SCORCHER!"  While I've been enjoying the constant cooling breeze that we are blessed with here in Piggy Paradise my earthbound staff and their furry herd of four cavies have been sweltering in forty three degrees centigrade.  As you know, my male staff's Dad was there too but he was thoroughly enjoying the heat as many folk from colder climates do.  He and my staff were seated at Aromas - a posh Parisian style street-side cafe in Noosa's swanky Hasting's Street where one can sit with a five dollar coffee and an eight dollar slice of carrot cake while looking for passing celebrities, or like my male staff simply ogling the bikini girls while drooling unattractively into one's cafe latte.  "Ah" said my male staff's Dad, stretching his left leg (The one with the dicky knee.) into the street so that one of the "stars" of Home & Away (I don't know which one it was they all look the same to me.) tripped over it and broke his hair. "It's good to feel the sun on my back.  Reminds me of when I was in Aden with the RAF.  Did I tell you that if the temperature reached the old one hundred mark all manual work on the base ceased, we'd all then go and play cricket, hockey or football."  He chuckled to himself and my staff pretended that it was the first time they'd heard that rather then the nineteenth.

Later that afternoon I drove (in spirit) with my male staff and his Dad to Brisbane Airport.  Male staff was putting his Dad on the plane back to Perth to be reunited with Mad Sister and Long Suffering Husband.  It was the only part of the entire weekend when we were cool.  Thank goodness my male staff has finally learned how to work the Getz's air-conditioning.  It took nearly seven years of sweating, open car windows and tornado hair, but one day while driving along he was groping for the radio button and pressed the air-conditioner button by mistake.  The blast of cold air took him by surprise and he was concerned that he may have caught a chill, not imagining for a second that the car might be responsible for the sudden drop in temperature. He even went to his doctor in case he had Ebola or something.  He regretted doing that because he was immediately grabbed by four burly male nurses in what appeared to be space suits and shoved into an isolation ward for a month.  While there it slowly dawned on him that he probably didn't have Ebola at all, but that his Hyundai Getz may have been equipped with a modern gadget called air-conditioning.  He called one of the spaceman nurses to share his thoughts but they weren't taking any chances.

Anyway, all's well that ends well and this happy accident meant that despite the extreme heat my male staff and his Dad had a very comfortable ride to Brisbane domestic airport, which thanks to the G20 summit meeting was just about deserted due to the media saying that Brisbane airport would be chaotic that weekend.  They failed to mention that they only meant the international airport, so apparently nobody wanted to fly domestically that day either.  Neither myself nor my male staff had ever seen it so quiet.  My male staff's Dad commented in an alarmingly loud voice that he could fire a machine gun around the place and not hit anyone.  Two people did show up shortly after he'd said that, but they turned out to be Federal policemen with itchy trigger fingers and it took all my male staff's somewhat questionable diplomatic skills to prevent them from arresting his Dad on terrorism charges, but they still insisted on deconstructing his wheelie-walker to satisfy themselves that is was neither packed with explosives nor could be reconstructed to make an Uzzi machine gun.

Finally my male staff handed his Dad over to his flight's cabin crew and a nice lady pushed him in his wheelchair down the airbridge towards the Boeing 737.  My male staff stood and watched as he disappeared from view and suddenly felt rather sad.  His Dad is eighty five years old now, rather immobile thanks to his dicky knee and is increasingly vague.  He's also the only parent left of the four that my staff once had.  "See you in the new year Dad."  Said my male staff as they shook hands.  My male staff turned and walked back to the car.  "What do you think Billy?" He asked my spirit.  "Will he still be around next year?'
 "'Course he will, stop worrying." I wheeked.  My male staff stopped for a moment, looked around and smiled as though he'd just heard something familiar and comforting.  Then he returned to the Hyundai Getz and tried to remember which of the buttons started the "new fangled" air-conditioner thingy.

I mentioned the G20 summit which everyone knows is a meeting of the leaders of the world's twenty largest economies.  However, there was a parallel meeting of equal importance occurring simultaneously.  I'm talking of course about the GP20: a meeting of the guinea pigs of the leaders of the world's 20 largest economies. Here, for your information and education is a list of names of some of the GP20 delegates.

USA - Guinea Pig Delegate Teepee.  That nice Mr O'Barmer named his guinea pig Teepee or TP after the Tea Party without whose help he may never have been elected President in the first place.

United Kingdom - Guinea Pig Delegate Maggie.  The origin of David Cameron's guinea pig's name is blindingly obvious.

Australia - Guinea Pig Delegate Jonesie.  Named by Tony Abbott after Rabid Shock Jock and utter buffoon Alan Jones without whom Mr Abbott would probably still be in opposition.  I did hear though that only today Jonesie has bitten Mr Abbott, so he can't be all bad.

Germany - Guinea Pig Delegate Spiros.  Angela Merkel figured that since she has given Greece Billions of Euros the very least they could do in return was allow her to give her guinea pig a Greek name.

Russia - Guinea Pig Delegate Rasputin.  Sadly Rasputin was barred from the summit for persistently invading other guinea pigs' cages.  Mr Putin is reportedly very proud of Rasputin's actions.

Saudi Arabia - Guinea Pig Delegate Jesus.  I don't know what King Abdullah was thinking.  Maybe he was drunk.

Wun day wen I grow up I want to be a deligut at like a big confrunce.  I want to make a contribewshun to werld piece. I also want to do my bit for clymutt change. In facked I want to be the John Lemon of the guinea pig werld.  Imajin.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

A Responsible Adult

Don't say I didn't warn you.   I told you on Twitter that there would be no blog post last week because I was traveling (in spirit) across to the other side of Australia with my male staff.  That's from Brisbane to Perth, which is like New York to Los Angeles or Lands End to John O'Groats times about five for those of you unaccustomed to Australian geography.  However, like the great Arnold Schwartzenpiggy I said "I'll be back." and here I am.

I must admit that I was a little worried about leaving my female staff at home on her own, but then again she did have three other guinea pigs (live ones at that) looking after her.  There's Tom, Alfie, Baci and Paolo the budgie. Plus she also had the supervision of a responsible adult in the shape of Toby - one of the world's ten fattest cavies according to Debrett's.  He disciplines the younger guinea pigs by sitting on their heads.
A responsible adult.

So, it was off to Perth for me and my male staff and I must say that going there in spirit is a lot more comfortable than flying there in Comedy Class.  For a start you don't have to sit there for almost six hours with your knees resting on your chest just because the selfish twat in the seat in front of you decides he's going to recline his seat back fully from the moment the plane takes off until two minutes before it lands, so that you get to admire the dandruff on his headrest at close quarters.  You also don't have to put up with the obnoxious brat in the seat behind kicking the back of your seat for the same six hours.  For some reason humans frown on you if you turn around and slap the little bit of bush chocolate across the head and tell it's ignorant parents to control their evil spawn or you'll tip their rum and Coke over their heads and then shove the plastic cups up their noses.

It was dark when my male staff's plane landed and once he'd unfolded his cramped limbs and hobbled off the plane he went to the rental car desk where he collected a set of keys and shuffled off to find his car.  Naturally it was the furthest one from the terminal so his bag carrying arm was at least six inches longer by the time he reached it.  I reminded him that this was his own fault because he was too mean to pay four dollars for a luggage cart.  The car was a Mitsubishi Lancer and appeared to be made entirely out of recycled 7 Up cans. Nevertheless, it had four wheels and started first time and within half an our he had arrived at his destination.  Obviously as I was traveling in spirit I arrived well before him.  We were staying at the house of his mad sister's long suffering husband's sister and her husband, who may have also been long suffering, but I don't really know him well enough to make that judgement. Male staff's mad sister and her long suffering husband had just arrived from England and were rather shocked to find that male staff's Dad had stowed away in one of their bags.  He hadn't been invited on the trip but felt that he was entitled to join them since he had paid for their tickets.

It had been a year since the family had seen each other. Male staff kissed and hugged his mad sister and shook her long suffering husband's hand.  Wait, let me think, maybe it was the other way round, I can't remember.  His dad was sitting in an armchair waiting for police to arrive because mad sister had called them when she discovered him in her suitcase, but I don't think they believed her because they never did turn up.  Either that or they had something more important to do like sitting in their patrol car, eating doughnuts, drinking coffee and keeping an eye on the scantily clad chicky babes in the nightclub district. The next day, when mad sister finally gave away the idea of turning her Dad over to the cops she went out and hired him an electric mobility scooter because his dicky knee meant it took an eternity for him to get anywhere. Also she thought it might keep him out of trouble and give her and long suffering husband more time to enjoy themselves.  It was an ill advised move from the start.  Nevertheless it did provide hours of family fun watching him drive the thing into fish ponds, the ocean (from Fremantle Pier), across six lane highways and most memorably of all Perth International Airport's main runway.

Anyway, after a week my male staff decided to fly back to Brisbane with his Dad before someone got seriously hurt.  I think he was most worried that it might be him.  He also decided not to hire a mobility scooter for him.  Still, it's surprising how much fun you can have with a Zimmer frame, especially one my male staff has made himself to save money.

I'm like Whoa!  Where did this old geezer come from?  Uncal Billy's mail staff comes in and like ten minits later this other old bloke comes in and he looks just like Uncal Billy's mail staff ecksept he's like for hundred yeers older, witch is kwite amayzing cos Uncal Billy's mail staff must be a hundred and fifty if he's a day.  Anyway this old dude terns owt to be pritty kool reely cos he like gives me rides on his wheelie warker wen he's not like repairing it cos Uncal Billy's mail staff isunt very good at making things.