30 June 2006

Froosh Outfitters (since 2006)

I’ve decided (wisdom = infinite) that I ought to promote this blog a little bit more. How else am I going to get to give up work and lay around the house all day eating custard cream and plotting the downfall of the squirrels?

So, to this end (mostly the lying around, not the squirrels so much) I have decided to launch a special promotional
t-shirt, which will be the first garment in the extensive range of clothing from Froosh Outfitters. I hear tell of other more famous and shiny bloggers who have got all manner of merchandise and paypal accounts, so I will be leaping enthusiastic on that particular bandwagon. Unusual for me – often I find myself lying behind the bandwagon with tyre marks across my chest.

You may buy the t-shirt
here, but I have managed to persuade some major outlets to carry it and I’m pleased to say that it’s being pushed really heavily in some shops. I’ve also managed to secure some amazing celebrity sponsorship.

Even more exciting is the Froosh Convention 2006: Bend it like Bamboo which is being held in
Gelsenkirchen tomorrow. It’s going to be a really exciting opportunity for people to get together and share their stories about how the Miracle of Froosh ™ has touched their lives.

A Surfeit of (Stealth) Squirrels

Squirrels send in crack team on surveillance mission

27 June 2006

A Surfeit of Squirrels (5)

Squirrel: Froosh?
Me: Yeah?
Squirrel: You appear to have mowed the lawn.
Me: Yep. The grass was knee high. It was time.
Squirrel: Yeah, right, the thing is that I had put some things of mine in the ground and now I can’t find them.
Me: What’s that got to do with me mowing that lawn?
Squirrel: I had a great signposting system going on. You know, stand by ear of corn turn left, take three hoppity jumps to wildly overgrown parsley and turn right, ran at speed toward flowering chives, and so on. Now I can’t find any of my stuff.
Me: I don’t care. The lawn wanted mowing.
Squirrel: Yeah, but what about me? I’ve got a family to support you know.
Me: You can find more nuts, people are always feeding you. Crazy, crazy people.
Squirrel: Who said anything about nuts? I’ve got four high definition televisions, a Mac Powerbook, a box of Gnarls Barkley CDs, a draft of the seventh Harry Potter book, seventeen Louis Vuitton suitcases and a Paul Frank bumbag under here somewhere. Damn you.

Of washing machines and crisps

I note with interest that there is a hand wash setting on my washing machine. How can this be?

This is a right wonderworm.* I may have to write to Hotpoint.

It’ll be like the time I wrote to Walker’s asking them how they put the flavour on crisps. This, by the way, is a good way to get vouchers for free crisps. Not a good way, however, to find out how they put the flavour on crisps. I don’t think they knew. Maybe it’s magic. Wheeeeee.

* Like an earworm but, you know, different.

25 June 2006

Improving reading and writing in Willesden Green

I am a little wary when anything proclaims to be ‘improved’. I remember when milky ways were edible and jammy dodgers were jammy. Monster munch similarly went the way of the wagon wheel – ruined by improvement.

So, imagine my trepidation when I heard that Willesden Green Library Centre
was to be improved. What with WGLC being my spiritual home and all. For a few months the library was shrunk and stuffed in a room upstairs and the whole centre was shrouded in scaffolding and plastic whilst men in hard hats beavered away making the fabled improvements.

Then, on the Centre re-opening I wandered down to have a look. And my goodness it looked lovely - all clean and white with bright windows. Much improved by the disappearance of pub/cesspit Gigi’s which has no doubt put several environmental health inspectors out of work.

A couple of weeks later I returned to the shiny centre armed with my library card to find that somewhere in the improvement half the library books had disappeared. Also, those that are there are not resting happily on the shelves in alphabetical order but are slung sulkily around the place as though languishing in an adolescent bedroom.

To be fair, they have improved some things - the DVD collection continues to be impressive though, with a large number of new films including the latest releases. And they aren’t taking up so much space with those nasty foreign art house films anymore. Also, in place of some of those pesky books they have put a section for teenagers to hang around playing video games and shouting. An arcade – in a library.

Now, not content with improving the library, they have decided that they will improve the Willesden Green Writers Group
by cutting its funding. Which stands to reason really – with no one reading any books anymore what’s the point in encouraging anyone to write one?

23 June 2006

Tragic Tortoise News

It is with great sadness that we report the death of Harriet the Giant Galapagos Tortoise. Harriet is, or rather was (sorry), one of the world’s oldest living creatures. At the grand old age of 175 she was older than even Mingus Campbell and Humphrey Littleton.

Harriet will be much missed by zoo keepers at the Australia Zoo where she had lived, in quiet seclusion, for the last 17 years. She had an acute heart attack and passed away peacefully. Her longevity is being putting down to a ‘stress-free life’, much like the one which so benefited the ‘dear old’ queen mother.

Incredibly, DNA tests have shown that Harriet was in all likelihood born in 1830 in the Galapogas Isles, five years before Darwin visited. He brought a number of turtles back to England but Harriet is believed to have come from another island, which Darwin never ventured to, and so was not one of ‘Darwin’s Darlings’. She most probably arrived in Australia as part of her sentence after becoming involved in a hooch smuggling ring and running up considerable gambling debts in the late nineteenth century.

Harriet weighed 23 stone (150kg) and was the size of a dinner table. Keepers are now searching for a giant shoe box, two huge lolly sticks and a large space at the end of the garden.

20 June 2006

Cheesy spud bean thing

I've a "brilliant" idea - let’s continue the 'what the hell kind of a blog is this' saga by posting…..a recipe. Bear with me, yes?

I’m a big fan of food. Especially the comfort food. Mmmmm.

So, here is a recipe that I feel epitomises comfort food. I found it in a newspaper supplement or something, a while ago. In winter probably. It’s definitely a winter recipe but we’ve probably had our allocation of sunny days for this year so I shall persevere. Also, it okay to feel in need of comfort in the summer, you know. I like to serve it with savoy cabbage, which really does optimise the flatulence.

Put some medium sized potatoes, washed but not peeled, in a pan of boiling water and, erm, boil them until they are all boiled nicely; cooked through with the skin flaring a little. Then burn your poor fingers to bits peeling off the skin. I don’t know why you have to leave them in their skins then go through the agony of removing them but it makes all the difference so just do as you told. Eh? For a change.

Get a baking dish thingy out of the back of the cupboard and wipe the dust out of it with a damp cloth. You know, one of those that’s ceramic and about 25cm by 15 cm, with sides about 6cm high. Mine’s blue on the outside and white on the inside if that helps.

Pour two cans of organic Heinz baked beans into the dish thing. This is where you find out if you’ve got the right size dish. It’s too late if you haven’t but you’ll know for next time. You can use any old beans of course, but as I was saying to Nigella and Jamie just the other day when writing a recipe it's best to use the most pouncy ingredients you can find so people think you are a gourmet. Also, if you mention a household brand that the peasants will have heard of they will think you a Ccook of the People. Did I mention that you should use King Edward potatoes? Or those Egyptian ones from the shop round the corner from my house are nice. Skins are a bit thin though.

Put the evil digit burning potatoes, by now thoroughly swore at and some of which will be a bit like mash (that’s okay), on top of the beans. Spread them out, don’t just sling them all in one corner.

Next, get an enormous piece of strong cheddar (Davidstow) and, if you are me, grate most of it over the potatoes and beans until you have a cholesterol mountain and you can feel you arteries hardening just looking at it. Alternatively, if you are not me, just grate a non-gluttonous layer of cheese across the top of the mixture like any normal person would do.

Season. I like to season with loads of pepper but not much salt, because what with all the cheese I like to avoid salt as too much of it is bad for me.

Stick it in the oven for a while. I like to sit in front of the oven and watch through the glass door as the cheese melts, then bubbles and the potatoes go a little bit crispy on the top edges. If you don’t have a glass door I can’t imagine what you’ll do but I expect it will involve less dribble and drool.

Eat and enjoy.

I’m sorry? What temperature? Erm, I guess gas mark 6 or something. It’s beans, spuds and cheese – how wrong can it go?


16 June 2006

World Cup Prediction

I have consulted with various squirrels, two wooolice and an almost-four-week-old baby and we have rustled up the following prediction for my loyal, and sorely tested, reader(s):

The score in this year's world cup final will be Argentina 4 - 3 Spain.

Also of minor interest, the woodlice advocate England playing in a 3-5-2 formation with Owen's bottom warming the bench rather than the grass in the opposition's penalty box. But then, as those of us who have seen woodlice playing football will testify, they know nothing about the game.

06 June 2006

A Surfeit of Squirrels (Revenge is a dish best served cute)

Squirrel: Hey Froosh. Where’ve you been? You’ve been very quiet.
Me: I’ve been busy.
Squirrel: Really? Oh, man. You’ve been busy? Doing what. You don’t do anything.
Me: Come here and I will show you.
Squirrel: Seriously? You’re letting me into the house.
Me: Yeah, I’m in a good mood.
Squirrel: You’re not going to put me in that Hannibal Lecter mask even?
Me: Nope. Look at this.
Squirrel: What the hell is that?


Squirrel: Aaarrggghh! Help! It’s burning! I can feel the hard, sour crust around my heart melting. Make it stop. Make it stop. It’s too cute.
Me: Yep.
Squirrel: What is it?
Me: It’s a baby.
Squirrel: (runs screaming up horse chestnut at the end of the the garden) Damn you! Damn you!


Me: Mwah ha ha ha!