Saturday, 25 June 2011

Hello Glastonbury!

Amazing, here I am backstage at Glastonbury with Uncle Eric Pickles and co!!  Last night I took a call from a frantic Michael Eavis. He told me that a headline act was pulling out and he had key slot on the Pyramid stage that needed filling. Basically he begged me to see if D:Eric and the Dominoes could reform for one last performance. If you can remember we have gone down well at a previous gig so I got on the blower to the other band members to see what I could do. Great news – Uncle Eric, Grant and Bob jumped at the chance, unfortunately Nick couldn’t persuade Mrs Sheridan-Westlake to let him go ( - that’s his mother not wife if you were wondering).  So early this morning all of us, except Uncle Eric, piled into the back of transit van and headed down the M4. Uncle E insisted on travelling down in the Jag - that man thinks he is bigger than Bono!

So at 9pm hit the red button and you are going to be in for a treat. I can exclusively real the set list below and I know you are going to love it.

Sabotage – Beastie Boys
Sweet Caroline – Neil Diamond
Spell bound – Siouxsie and Banshees
Devil woman – Cliff Richard
Call me – Blondie
We don’t talk anymore – Cliff Richard
Do you really want to hurt me – Culture Club
She drives me crazy – Fine Young Cannibals
Two Tribes – Frankie Goes To Hollywood
Trash – Genesis
You can’t always get want you want – Rolling Stones


Loser – Beck
I am the walrus – The Beatles

All our needs are being catered for backstage and our specific requests for our rider have been met so far. Grant Shapps demanded a bowel of only blue M&Ms and a full length mirror, though Uncle Eric said that he would eat the other M&Ms so there will be no smelly waste. Uncle E has asked for a Chicken Tikka Masala and Bob some sanatogen ( go easy on the drugs dude). Our final demand is for our rubbish to be collected hourly and dumped in a landfill site – b*llocks to recycling -  this is Rock and Roll.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Search for the hero inside yourself

Sorry if I have been quiet of late. I have been very busy involved in a clandestine project in Eland House. I have been trying to find myself. No, I have not converted to Buddhism, partly in fear that due to my bad karma I get reincarnated as Mrs Pickles. I have been helping out my Great Uncle Eric. Following on from the suspension of a certain tweeter who may have been easy to spot as he was naked, the hunt has once again turned to vexatious Mr Tickles.

At first I thought the team viewing on screen my 'Tree of Celebration' post were simply enjoying the jokes but sadly not. This dastardly crew were blowing up the images and trying to recognise me in the reflection. I must confess I was worried, as the picture size was increased bit by bit, my image became clearer and clearer, until eventually on screen in perfect clarity you could see me sitting atop my trusty orange space hopper - signed photos available on request. Not sure what happens next but you will not see me bouncy down to the Cask and Glass on my spacehopper for while.

So now back to business of FoIs etc. I do not really know much about feminism apart from what I picked up at an equalities and diversity workshop a few years ago but I do know that Andy Williams 'Wives and Lovers' is not celebration of female emancipation. A wonderful tune nonetheless with salient messages:

Hey! Little Girl
Comb your hair, fix your makeup
Soon he will open the door
Don't think because there's a ring on your finger
You needn't try anymore

For wives should always be lovers too
Run to his arms the moment he comes home to you
I'm warning you...

Day after day
There are girls at the office
And men will always be men
Don't send him off with your hair still in curlers
You may not see him again

Indeed I know there are girls at the office and indeed some men will be men. I personally have resisted the temptation and believe me temptation has been thrust in my way many times - even for me as a humble assistant toner cartridge replacer. Just imagine if I had attained a high elevated position  - would I have been able to resist the call of the Sirens from the typing pool?

So here is my latest FoI request

Dear Chums

I have recently received an anonymous communication. In this furtive message I was informed that a certain very senior chap at DCLG has been conducting a extra martial dalliance with a junior member of staff. I grant that it would be foolish to name the dandy without conclusive proof but I think it is important to be clear about DCLG administer these delicate issues.

Please can you supply me with?

1. Any staff polices that relates to staff having relations with other staff. Please include mention of relations between staff and Ministers or god forbid between, staff and SpAds. I am not interested in the relationships between SpAds and Ministers as this no doubt transcends love.

2. The number of times, since January 2011, that a senior member of the HR team has had to speak, email or phone staff, SpAd or ministers about inappropriate behaviors and remind them of DCLG policy concerning affairs?

Yours crazy in love


Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Trash talk

When I was a young lad bin collection was all so simple.  Once a week a grumpy bloke in flat cap would come up the back alley, open the gate limp up the path to the back door. He would then drag the bin to a truck (making as much noise as possible at 5am, especially in the week before christmas) and then he would return the bin to the house leaving a trail of old cabbage leaves, cans of Hofmeister and empty B&H packets in his wake.  This would happen every week without fail, unless they bin men were on strike or couldn’t be bothered. I also remember there was a time when dad was working away that one young bin man even stayed over a few nights a week to ensure that bins were empty and clean –now that was service – at least according to my mum.

Oh how things have change.  Now my council comes and collect the rubbish once a fortnight. I have to drag the rubbish out various bins to the edge of my mansion and return them in the evening. Now I find  each morning I come down to the kitchen to find it infested with mice and rats feasting on the remains of my chicken tikka masala. I fear if weekly collections are not reinstated other scavengers will start be attracting to the decomposing food mountain they I pile up next to the toaster. How long before I find myself fighting dingoes, raccoons and hyenas over my fried breakfast. Something needs to be done surely? Mrs T suggests we use the lockable food caddy that was supplied by the council but I am not sure…..

Latest FoI request to find out how many councils kicked up a fuss over weekly bin collection.

Dear Chums

I am very disappointed with Uncle Eric. I was expecting today that he was going to tell those stroppy councils to reinstate costly inefficient and often unwanted weekly bin collection as part of his localism campaign.  After all it is every Englishman's, god given, right to have the remains of his chicken tikka taken to a land fill within hours of discarding the left overs  – though I never personally find that I can’t finish off my supper and would be surprised if my Uncle ever throws any food waste away himself – as it is .. er ..wasteful.

I am surprised that Uncle Eric has been forced to make very large and uncomfortable U-turn.  I really cannot understand it myself. Why does he not just tell the councils what he wants them to do and force them to do it? He should make it clear who is the boss man. I must confess I know little about politics but suspect the Ms Spelman and the powerhouse that is Defra pulled rank over DCLG and we got our wrists slapped.

On to my request. Apart from Defra moaning about reintroducing weekly bin collection I suspect many (conservative) council were annoyed by plans. Can you please supply all correspondence (written and electronic) from councils to DCLG concerning weekly bin collection? Can this cover the period of 1/5/2011 to 13/6/2011?

Yours bincerely,

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone

I suspect that many of you choked on your Frosties this morning at the revelation that DCLG staff splashed out over a grand on a night at a fancy burlesque bar in London’s swanky Smithfields.
 I too felt a tight knot in my stomach when I read this story. Alas dear reader I have sordid confession. I think I was there that night but I cannot really recall.

We were two weeks into a new administration and the Department was buzzing with new Ministers and their fresh faced keen Special Advisers. I had produced some sterling work replacing a colour toner cartridge with a new austerity black and white one and was rewarded with an invite to a bar. One thing led to another and the rest of the night remains fuzzy. I do occasionally have flashbacks which consist of obese gentleman in tight rubber knickers gyrating to a Biggie Smalls tune  – not sure where this comes from but it is not nice.  But what I can say with all certainty that this tweeting civil servant never got naked but my thoughts go out to those that may have.

Forgive me Uncle if I have sinned.