Let’s Not Go to Work

Cabinet Meets to Discuss Wealth Redistribution


Back l-r : Michael Gove, Jeremy Hunt, Theresa May.
Front l-r : Nick Clegg, David Cameron, Vince Cable, Gideon Osborne, Eric Pickles


These Could Work (Knock on Wood)

A special female underwear that features anti-sexual harassment is on sale in Thailand. The underwear comes with an artificial penis inside. Its designers claimed that this underwear can prevent woman from being sexually harassed.
People’s Daily Online 人民网


Reminds me of….no , I won’t say it.

I can scotch the rumours here and now that I was the model for these.


Tales from a Tooth Fairy

From this morning’s BBC web page:

Moroccan Stone Age hunters’ rotten teeth
By Jonathan Amos Science correspondent, BBC News

Stone Age Teeth

Scientists have found some of the earliest evidence for widespread tooth decay in humans. It comes from the skeletal remains of Stone-Age hunter-gatherers who lived in what is now Morocco more than 13,700 years ago.

The researchers tell the PNAS journal that the individuals were eating a lot of high-carbohydrate nutty foods.

The poor condition of their teeth suggests they were often in agony.

“At a certain point, the tooth nerve dies but up until that moment, the pain is very bad and if you get an abscess the pain is excruciating because of the pressure on the jaw,” explained Dr Louise Humphrey, from London’s Natural History Museum.

Well that would explain a lot. I must have been eating too many high-carbohydrate nutty foods as, yet again my choppers are giving me serious aggro, and I have been in agony now for, on and off, a month. It will come as no surprise to my regular reader in Penge that I have teeth issues again. My molars have had the doctors baffled for years and their range of colours and hues have kept my friends and colleagues amused for just as long.

I wonder if when these Stone-Age hunter-gatherers popped round to see what their local NHS dentist (you remember the NHS, don’t you ?) could do for them, they were given an ‘estimate’ for the work of 700 quid ?

Cos that’s how much I was quoted.


A Stone-Age hunter-gather and his dentist

Now £700 is not something to be sniffed at. In the present climate of poor trade and nervous consumers (whatever your mate Gideon will have you believe) I’d have to sell quite a lot of T-shirts to clear £700.  About 700, since you ask. And this was only an estimated figure. After antibiotics, cleaning & polishing (once an optional extra, now compulsory) and trips to the hygienist it’ll run into a good deal more.

When I was growing up (yes, I do have a good memory) estimates were given for carpet-laying, wall-rendering or engine-overhauling.  It was rather worrying to think that my dentist, evil-looking man with a drill and pliers in his hand, considered the work I needed in my mouth to be so extensive and major enough to give me a rough guess of how much it might cost. This treatment didn’t tally with his usual price list.

“Give or take a couple of hundred pounds” he added.

(He didn’t say that, but that’s what he meant.)

So, before the festive season began I underwent two, count ’em, TWO root canal procedures, one in my Upper Right Second Molar, the other in my Lower Right Oh Fuck Me That Hurts Premolar. The second of these treatments seem to involve the Doc taking a threaded needle, screwing it down deep into the tooth then pulling it out quickly so that, not only the root, but my right big toenail were wrenched from their housings.

I squealed like Ned Beatty.

So, several hundred pounds lighter (in cash, not in weight) I returned home to enjoy Christmas with The Incumbent, a bottle of malt whisky and a demijohn of antibiotics, content in the knowlege that although expensive, my Xmas would at least be toothache-free.


That was December 20th 2013.

On December 22nd 2013 I woke to feel a slight nagging pain in my tooth. This time the ache was from my Lower Left First Molar (do keep up).

“That’s a bugger,” I thought to myself, “I’ll have to go back and see the dentist in the New Year. More Money !  Oh well, at least the pain is not too bad”.

On the 24th the nagging pain had turned into the sort of pain usually associated with a Mossad interrogation, or listening to Robbie Williams ‘crooning’. I was in pain, a lot of pain and my dentist wasn’t open until January 6th. I decided to tough it out. I upped the doses of antibiotics and Lagavulin  and vowed to Ho Ho Hic my way through it.

On the 30th of December, having had a rather sweaty few of days of grimacing and eating only one one side, thoughts of the pain in my Lower Left were completely overshadowed by excruciating burning pain I now received from my Upper Right (one of the original offenders). I was in serious discomfort now, yet I was still a week away from my dentist opening up again for business.

“Why didn’t you just find an emergency 24hr Dentist to treat you?” I hear you ask.

When you are cursed with a fear of dentists as I am and millions like me are, it really is a case of “Better the Devil you Know”. Strange dental surgeons scare me, (see below pic).


Dear, dear Larry (now sadly gonnie) in a scene from Snickers Man

A week on a cocktail of Ibuprofen, Paracetemol, Orajel, Amoxicillin, (other suicide kits are available), Clove Oil, Glenfidich, Glenmorangie, Glencampbell, Glenclose, Glenanythingaslongasthissoddingtoothstopshurting drags by until the 5th (Sunday) when I feel with my tongue an odd lump on a porcelain crown I had fitted a few years ago. With the walk of a condemned man heading to the gallows, or to a Harry Potter movie, I trudge up to the bathroom and to the mirror therein.

There, as clear as day, is the unmistakeable sight of a crack running the whole length of my crown. It’s has decided this would be a good time to split in half (well! I was going to the dentist anyway, wasn’t I ?).

Yesterday I left the dental surgery clutching another in a long line of prescriptions for antibiotics, and a card with the times of four more appointments to see the surgeon. Two for the THIRD in a series of root canal treatments (Lower Left First Molar) and two to have my freshly-split crown replaced.

KPMG have been assigned the case and I expect to receive their final estimated figures of the cost within weeks.

Oh yes, Happy New Year, by the way.


OBIT: Bye Bye, Love

tt_image_791421Al Cook, (29 August 2012 — 7 January 2013), of the Not Very Cleverly Brothers died here, again, at the SGC, Australia.

He will be best remembered for the chart-toppers :“Bye Bye Match, Bye Bye Captaincy”; “Wake Up, Middle Order”; “Swann Dog”; “Andy’s Clown”; and “All I have to do is Bat“.

Cook is survived by 15 loyal band members.

And Graeme Swann .



The Freemantle Doctor Will See You Now.


“But Grandfather, you have read the London Times. How bad do they say it was?”
“So bad, my boy, that they are even considering recalling Ravi Bopara !”


The Barmy Army watch patiently at an England net session at The Paul Hogan Academy Ground, Perth


After a couple of overs knock-about at the WACA, and having let Mike Atherton study the ball for a while, hopes are high of reverse swing for the English.


Other former MCC captains are drafted in to help improve the morals of the team, but not all seem to be concentrating on cricket.


The Tourists seek clarification of the LBW, using local knowledge


Meanwhile back in the nets, Joe Root tries to unravel the mystery of the Australian non-spinning off break bowling which has winkled out so many. (“WINKLED !!! fnarrr fnarrrr,” squeals young Joe) …


…Stuart Broad strives to perfect his now legendary “Stick the ball down the throat of the only fielder on the boundary” shot. (Apologies for no live footage from Channel 9. So here’s a filer of Stuart developing the shot back at Hogwarts during the 1990s)…


…while Ian Bell treats himself to a haircut before the next battle. Spiffing.


Completely coincidentally, Dr Who (50th Birthday Box set Edition now available from BBC Online) sends a message of support to the traveling Englishmen (other bandwagons are available)…

David Cameron -1716210

…and possibly the last man to be transported from the mother country arrives in Oz, and is immediately asked if he fancies opening. He doesn’t. (NB: Fawad Ahmed fielding at 2nd slip, having had his application for English Citizenship accepted).

Root and Tim Bresnan accept a cigarette but, bravely, decline a blindfold, before the last rites are administered on the English batting line-up

Plucky England Show Signs of Steady Improvement


Queens Park Oval, Port of Spain, Trinidad, March 29 1994.

England should take great pride in their batting over the past few days. It wasn’t that long ago (19 years ago in fact) when they were skittled by West Indies’ Curtley Ambrose for 46 in their second innings in Trinidad. Ambrose (who took 11 for 94 in the game) was one of the greats of the game. But he needn’t had been. This was an age when they were regularly getting routed by all and sundry, good, the bad and the distinctly average of world cricket.

Nowadays, England can be content that they give a good account of themselves against some of the world’s fifth best test sides — often making three figures in the process! On taking up his position as..er…wait a minute, I have it here…er…yes, here it is: COACH of the English team, Andy Flower was quoted as saying “My Goal is to get this side to a level when they can play out a whole spell by Nathan Lyon without losing any more than two or three wickets. Also I’d like to turn Mitchell Johnson from the Sunday Morning Lummox he currently is, into someone who can run through our upper and middle order like Jimmy Savile in a Children’s Ward, no matter how many times he telegraphs his short balls (Johnson, not Savile, that is).” Only Mr Fowlers’ strongest critic would accuse him of failing to achieve his goals.


The Answer to last time’s SPOT THE DIFFERENCE Competition:                                                          The 2013/14 side has a Different Photographer.
Winner: Mr D Pringle or SW1 who wins a Poacher-turned-Gamekeeper outfit.

That 1994 Match Summary:

West Indies 252 (Richie Richardson 63, Brian Lara 43; Angus Fraser 4 for 49, Chris Lewis 4 for 51) and 269 (Keith Arthurton 42, Jimmy Adams 43, Shivnarine Chanderpaul 50; Andy Caddick 6 for 65) beat England 328 (Mike Atherton 48, Graeme Hick 40, Graham Thorpe 86; Curtly Ambrose 5 for 70) and 46 (Curtly Ambrose 6 for 24) by 147 runs.

…and by 2013 England have improved to this:

Australia 570-9 dec & 132-3 dec beat England 172 & 312 by 218 runs

Andy Fowlup calculates that, at this rate of progress, by the year 2030, England can expect to rack up scores of well in excess of 500 against a Bangladeshi Presidents XI, and even offer Holland a Five Test series.