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Thursday, 29 April 2010

product placement...

...wondering if HP might grant me a free supply?


Further sketchbook critturs...

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Guardian All Ears 24th April

Had decided to do some serious research into expensive pram / buggy one-upmanship (see Stoke Newington or similar where Bugaboo jousting is almost an olympic sport) but went for the feeble pun instead...Pramalot anybody? (I know, I know,)

(Original article here -

(Article by Michael Holden)

Eating lunch at an outside table I was distracted by the intensity of
a woman’s voice nearby. I turned to see she was sat just along from
me, and had recognised an acquaintance of hers who was pushing a pram.

Woman 1 (as though the child were on fire) “Your baby!”

Woman 2 (proud, but nonetheless alarmed at the intensity of her
friend’s exclamation) “This is Sammy.”

Woman 1 (no less shrill) “Your baby has the cutest hair!”

I looked, and saw that the child in question boasted a sprawling mop
of curly hair.

Woman 2 (pulling at it to demonstrate its full scope) “Yes he does.”

Woman 1 (shaking her head in wonder as if present at the scene of a
miracle-as oppose to just some hair) “People must stop you all the

Woman 2 (uncertain) “Kind of…”

Woman 1 (noticing a Sesame St toy affixed to the pram) “You have Elmo!
We have Elmo too…”

Woman 2 “Sammy loves Elmo.”

The second woman’s husband appeared, he was on the phone. He hadn’t
much hair of his own. The women fussed over the child, he looked up
and down the street and then hung up reluctantly as though he knew
what was coming.

Woman 2 “This is my husband John-John, this is Susan.”

Woman 1 (without hesitation) “Your son has the most fantastic hair!”

Man (smiling weakly) “We have to get going.”

Woman 1 “I was just saying, your son’s hair…people must stop you all the time…”

Man “Yeah, well. We should really get going.”

Woman 1 “I wish I had my camera.”

Woman 2 (manoeuvring the pram away) “It was good to see you again.”

As they left the other woman’s face fell, as if having seen the hair
messiah, the remainder of existence seemed both bald and long.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

'You vile jelly!'

Was reminded of this prince of insults while watching the wonderful 'Sir Henry at Rawlinson's End' - just waiting for a chance to use it one day...

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Creature designs

Some creature designs for a book I've been working on with a friend

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Guardian All Ears 17th April
(Article by Michael Holden)
In an American airport bar, I didn't notice what the woman sitting next to me had ordered, but I started to pay attention when she tried to negotiate over how long it should be cooked for.

Woman "Could I get that rare?"

Waitress "How do you mean?"

Woman "I'd like it cooked rare."

Waitress "I don't think we're allowed to do that. I think they all have to come the same way. It's good, though."

Woman (unmoved) "I don't want it medium rare or anything."

Waitress "I think it just comes how it comes. I never heard anyone complain about it. I'll check. Shall I check?"

Woman "Please check."

She left and came back triumphant, full of possibilities, channelling the remnants of the Obama vibe.

Waitress "Yes! Yes, we can do that."

Less than three minutes later the waitress brought the woman a plate of fish that looked anaemic. You could tell by sight that it would be a mistake to eat it.

Waitress "OK?"

Woman (pushing it away) "Can you cook this more?"

Waitress (taking it) "Absolutely."

She was gone for another few minutes and when she came back the fish looked edible. The woman, though, just looked at it sideways and prodded her Blackberry. Evidently she wasn't big on second chances.

Waitress (checking back, but happy to ignore the evidence on the plate) "How is everything?"

Woman (just as willing to maintain the delusion) "Everything's great."

Waitress (reaching for the untouched plate) "Are we done here?"

Woman (more right than she knew) "Yes we are".

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

rooster man

"I decided to have a little bit of 'work' done dear boy!" - extreme plastic surgery in action

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Guardian All Ears 10th April

...due to various 'articles getting lost' & bank holiday shenanigans this was drawn in record time...anyone got Norris McWhirter's* number?
(*this reference severely dates me - Wikipedia him if you must)

(Article by Michael Holden)
At a football match the team I follow scored a fourth goal and I
noticed the young man to my left seemed unusually affected by this. He
crumpled, as though he had been shot and the two older men with him
pointed at him and began chanting.

Men “Pay your rent, pay your rent, pay your rent…”

Man1 “I can’t stand it, I can’t cope with this…”

Man 2 “What odds did you get?”

Man 1 “150 to one”

Man 2 “And you put a tenner down?”

Man 1 “Yeah.”

Evidently he had made a correct score bet, which would net him £1500
quid if nothing else happened for the next 15 minutes. From the faces
he was pulling you might have thought he was giving birth. And fair
enough, it did add a new excitement to a game that had, in spite of
its score, been a pretty hum drum affair. I looked at the clock and
spoke to him.

Me “That’s 100 quid a minute.”

Man 1 “Fuck off, your making it worse.”

Me “Sorry.”

Man 2 (Leaning across to me) “He hasn’t paid his rent in two months,
so it’s going on that.”

Man 1 “I’ll spend it how I like.”

Man 2 “You ain’t even got it!”

Man 1 (wriggling about, refusing to look at the game) “I can’t cope,
I’m gonna have a breakdown.”

Man 2 “Don’t think about it.”

Man 1 (watching through his fingers as the opposition closed in on
goal) “You bastards, you fuck this up and I will fucking come down

They scored. I couldn’t look at him, but he made a kind of wild
whimpering sound.

Man 1 “1500 quid!”

Man 2 (sagely) “Money you never had.”

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Guardian All Ears 3rd April

I always used to love walking round Fresh & Wild dodging the 'status baby buggies' & surreptitiously planting boxes of mechanically retrieved chicken shapes on the shelves
(thanks to everyone for their suggestions for faddy overpriced super foods this week too - I love you all x)
See the original article here...
(Article by Michael Holden)
I tend to steer clear of the organic grocer. Not for reasons of taste or judgment, but of finance. Sometimes, though, it's the only place open that has what I need. So I wound up in the holistic and meditative mood space that passes for a queue, watching a woman pass parcels of unfeasible origin and expense to a cashier whose demeanour hovered between complete spiritual enlightenment and imminent rectal prolapse.

Cashier (holding up one of her boxes) "This stuff is amazing."

Woman "I'm kind of having a detox."

Cashier (nodding sagely) "Well, that should do the trick."

Woman "I'm not into fasting, you know?"

Cashier (noticing the woman's hand – which was tattooed with various forms of writing) "That's such a beautiful script."

Woman (thrilled) "You know it?"

Cashier "Uh-huh. I mean, I'm very impressed by all that culture – the whole mindset. I read as much as I can. I hope to go over there and study."

Woman (pointing out more writing on her arm) "Each moment decays as soon as it's born."

Cashier "That's one of the core beliefs, for me."

Woman "I love it – it's just so true."

All the more reason to get a move on, you might think. But this went on for some time, until I was charged £7 for five onions, a small bag of wheat and some pine nuts (never let it be said that I don't know how to have a good time). When I got home and began cooking, the onions turned out to be in a state of decay that paralleled our own, which cheered me up no end. I would have gone back and complained, but the moment was already collapsing.

Friday, 2 April 2010

today's creatures...

These critturs were from a book I illustrated a while back - I just saw them again & liked 'em - that's all - over & out!

Thursday, 1 April 2010