Posts by Joseph:
We have so far given you a pretty extensive list of what kinds of things you can expect to be doing at Uni. Things such as drinking, gnoming, and sexing, but hopefully never all three at the same time. Nonetheless, prepare yourself for an article so true, so witty, and so hilarious that you’ll be telling all your friends in no time.
I give you, the number one thing to do at uni: Procrastination.
You know, when we write these letters, we’re not always rude and demanding. Sometimes, we just want a nice chat… and replacement items. So imagine our delight when clothing company QCumber replied to us. Aren’t they nice? They also make lovely jumpers.
SUBJECT: Good Morrow!
Your great garments give me grounds to gracefully grab grand gratuities! (my attempt at thanking you for the good recent deal with alliteration)
I was delighted to receive two jumpers in the post from you recently, particularly because that’s how many I ordered. The Broccoli on the sweater looked so real I could almost eat it. Then I remember I don’t like vegetables, and the jumper made a squeaky noise against my teeth. The pineapples on maroon also stood out fiercely. I’ve never seen a fierce pineapple before, so please give yourself a pat on the back for that.
Unfortunately, this is the part of the e-mail where my foibles feebly ferment. Upon wearing of the jumper (I went for the two-hands-in-first method, followed by the head. I’m sure you know it well) it became alarmingly apparent that the jumper was slightly too small. As a student I do not live decadently, so I’m sure I haven’t put on too much weight recently. I had had a Pizza Hut (pepperoni and stuffed crust, in case you were wondering) the previous night, but I don’t think this could possibly cause me to go up one jumper size. Could it? If so, my apologies for wasting your time and please forward this letter to the Pizza Hut complaints department.
Due to the smallness of said jumpers, and rotundness of my said torso, could I possible return the jumpers to you, in return for you sending me back the same jumpers but one size up (both from a medium to a large)? I would be more than happy to pay for postage and packaging myself. Alternatively you could send your CEO round for a cup of coffee and I could wrap them up and pretend its his Christmas present. Whatever works best for you.
(PS. The jumpers in question are one medium broccoli on white and one medium pinepple on “helaconia”, or maroon for those of us who live in the regular colour spectrum)
SUBJECT: Good Morrow!
‘Twas a dull day indeed until my electronic mail inbox was brightened up by the arrival of your flowery missive. Would that more people wrote as eloquently as your good self, both in business and personal correspondence. Some might impugn that those amongst us who are considerate and good-mannered enough to invest the requisite time into composing such cohesive odes are in need of a hobby or more acquaintances, and are unlikely to be sexually successful, but fie on those fools say I.
In reply to the thrust (if you will) of your communique, a trade of jumpers is something that we could certainly consider, given the correct procedure. I would humbly request that you place the items in question into an envelope of appropriate volume, neither too large nor too small, and write upon this envelope the following words:
QCumber Designs Ltd
46 Chestnut Grove
Would you be so good as to also place inside a cheque for the sum of £3.95, made payable to QCumber Designs Ltd, in order that we may return the jumpers unto you? An indication that the parcel is from yourself, together with confirmation of the desired transformation, would be of great benefit too. Please then take this package and render it unto the Royal Mail, who will convey it unto ourselves upon payment of an appropriate and fair sum. Upon receipt of the aforementioned, we will perform a similar procedure with more appropriately apportioned garments, which may then be worn and enjoyed by you, just as so many around the world already enjoy them.
Please do send me and my colleagues any further enquiries you may have; it is our pleasure to deal with such fine gentlemen as yourself.
Our best to you and yours, your humble servant,
Robert Heaton III of London
Employee of the Guild of QCumber
Dictated but not read
For a related article, Try Nando’s Nonsense
Initially, this numerically obese title confused me somewhat and led me to mistakenly label the film “Final Destination 5D”, with the fifth dimension being fear. I don’t know what the fourth dimension would be though, so stop asking me.
This franchise cleaved and hew its way into life back in 2000. Unfortunately, since then, it has been grotesquely masqueraded down the same blood-strewn and well-trampled path as film series such as Saw and Hostel. It sits comfortably on its foibles in the gore porn category of film. As an unashamed gore fan (and porn fan, but lets not get into that here) I would say that this film can hold itself in a much higher regard then any of the latter Saw sequels.
It unfortunately stumbles headfirst into the pitfalls of 3D film, with severed limbs, blood splatter and red spiky instruments-o’-doom coming straight towards the viewer. This is quite tacky and more of a distraction than anything. I don’t know if it was my smudged glasses or bad 3D production but much of the background scenery was blurred. Probably the glasses though, since they looked like this:
Due to the ending, it seems like this entry into the franchise was supposed to be the final destination (surprising, given the name of 2009′s “The Final Destination”). Unfortunately for the silver screen, at last count (just now) the film had made over $140,000,000 off a $45,000,000 budget. So expect to see a lot more final destinations in the future. To be honest, you really would have thought they’d reached their destination by now…
Due to its original premise and Rube Goldberg inspired death sequences, the first two or three films were probably enough to sate the appetite of gore fans. The log scene on the highway in the second film was a particular highlight of mine. The recent films have toned down to more of a black comedy, not unlike Scream 4. They know they are over the top, and so they poke fun of themselves a little bit. What this film does so brilliantly, however, is create so much suspense before each death that you could cut it with a knife (SPOILER ALERT: Something’s gonna get cut, and it sure as hell ain’t the suspense).
All in all, the film has better acting, better directing, and perhaps even better deaths than any other in the series. And the plot twist at the end is so good, you could uncork your wine with it.
Want more from this author? Try The Everyman’s Guide To Learning The Guitar
Or for a related article, how about a review of Insidious
Very occasionally, big food companies make mistakes. And we can’t blame them, what with the large quantities of food they must produce. When I say we can’t blame them, I mean ‘we can’. This is how.
SUBJECT: Moulden Nuggets
Dear Mr. Nestle
I have been a rabid fan of Golden Nuggets for years. That darn prospector sure makes me chuckle every morning, with his yellow beard! Haha!
So imagine my utter dejection when I poured out my Golden Nuggets this morning and one of these delicious bites-o-crunch had a bluish tinge to it. I thought it may have been a belated St. Patrick’s day limited edition (I’m colourblind) but upon further inspection of the packet, there was no such promotion. Furthermore, all other golden nuggets in the bowl were a perfect golden yellow. (I got them all out the bowl to check, and sustained milk damage to my £4.99 tablecloth from IKEA).
I showed my grandmother to confirm that this was indeed a grossly discoloured item. She became so distressed that she refused to take her medication, and I was forced to tie her to the bed with elastic bands and weigh her down with the cat.
I am not one to complain, but this really did sour my breakfast. Since I paid full price for the box, I feel somewhat short-changed. Would it be possible to reimburse for the cost of the particular Golden Nugget in question? One pack of regular Golden Nuggets weights 375g, and I paid £1.67 for it. I have a copy of the receipt that I can post to you if you wish.
If we assume that one Golden Nugget weighs about 0.1g (could you confirm this? I would be delighted to know, and could add it to my ‘what items weigh’ chart.) then that means there are, roughly, 3750 nuggets in one pack. This means that one nugget is worth 0.04p. I think it is only fair that, due to the traumatic nature of events that transpired, that it could be rounded up to the nearest one penny, which would be one penny.
I nervously await your return,
Mr. Joseph W. O’Neill
SUBJECT: RE: Moulden Nuggets
Dear Mr ONeill
Thank you for contacting us about NestlÃ© Golden Nuggets breakfast cereal. I am sorry you feel disappointed with your purchase.
All consumer complaints are fed back to our Quality Assurance Department for a detailed review to confirm that all our procedures were followed during manufacture. As we have not had an opportunity to examine the pack and contents, it is difficult to determine the actual cause of your complaint.
Customer satisfaction is always our priority and Quality Assurance procedures are continually in operation to ensure that only product of the highest quality leaves our plant. It is a matter of great concern that any complaint should be associated with one of our cereals and I apologise for any inconvenience caused.
As the manufacturer of many popular breakfast cereal products, we are aware of the need to ensure high standards are always met. Consequently, comments from our consumers are a vital aid to maintain these standards.
Thank you for taking the time to contact us and we hope that you will continue to purchase Nestle cereal products in the future. Please can you kindly supply your address so I can arrange for some vouchers to compensate you for your inconvenience. I hope that all future purchases are satisfactory.
Consumer Relations Executive
Yup, we’ve done it again. If this is only the first time you’ve seen us do it, click here
In life, there are mysteries. Some more mysterious than others. The rest, less so. Out of all of them, the infamous (not famous at all) Valentich Disappearance makes me gnash my teeth so hard in confused nervousness that I’m surprised my lower jaw hasn’t yet escaped through the top of my head.
As a pilot with over 150 hours of flight experience, Frederick Valentich is something of a seasoned pro. You would expect that he would be properly equipped to deal with any situation that developed in mid-flight. Little did he know, the only equipment he would have needed in this circumstance was a built-in toilet because shitting oneself was an inevitability.
On the 21st October 1978, Valentich took his Cessna light aircraft for a routine flight over the Bass Straight in Australia. The first peculiarity was Valentich reporting to Melbourne air traffic control that he was being accompanied by an aircraft around 300 metres above him. “No problem!” Valentich undoubtedly thought, “This is the sky, where aeroplanes roam free like buffalo on the range.” However, on this occasion, someone had thrown a cat in amongst the pigeons. Wait, I mean buffaloes, I think.
When traffic control stated there was no known traffic at his level or in his area, Freddie’s brain began to turn to soup due to the sheer terror of the situation. This was probably because the unidentified craft, with a shiny metallic surface and flashing green lights, was said to be actively toying with him. It would dart away at speeds of up to 600mph before coming back and orbiting Valentich’s aircraft. To make matters worse, he then began experiencing engine problems and had to divert his course to a place called King Island. Alas, he was never to arrive, as this was about to happen.
Valentich was now to utter his final words, which make my buttocks clench so tight that I broke my office chair. He said: “The strange aircraft is hovering on top of me again. It is hovering… and it’s not an aircraft”. On the exact moment that Valentich realised it was not an aircraft, he was attacked by unknown forces. This means it probably wasn’t even a UFO because even a UFO constitutes an aircraft. And Freddie knows his shit because he used to study Ufology as a serious hobby. Valentich and his aeroplane were never seen again. Presumably because there is no point living in this plane of existence where horrors of this magnitude are occurring.
After this, air traffic control heard seventeen seconds of “metallic scraping sounds, with no discernable patterns in time or frequency”. Aside from aliens, the only logical explanation for this is that they simply heard the sound of Transformers having sex.
As is common with these kind of events, there are those who are quick to come up with plausible alternative explanations. There are usually decent scientific answers to these kinds of mysteries. The best the academic collective could do on this one is that Valentich, a respected and expert pilot, had been flying upside down without even realising it. The other ‘aircraft’ was simply his own reflection in the water, and he just crashed into the sea. All this in an airplane that is unable to fly upside down.
You win again, Paranormality!
To the self-proclaimed fashionista (you can instantly tell that I am not a fashionista due to my use of the word ‘fashionista’), observing those who look cooler than you as you pathetically shuffle past is the number one method of finding the new trends. A flamboyant haircut, an exuberant t-shirt, or some gene-pool-reducing tight jeans must be scribbled instantly onto your mental notepad if you are to one day match their lofty grandness.
Of course, upon seeing these people, one must cross the street immediately, since ‘unknown’ now pertains to ‘extremely dangerous and to be avoided at all costs’. But then you see the same haircut again. And the same jeans again. And the same t-shirt again. Oh wait, that’s just the same guy coming back the other way.
Sightings increase in the upcoming days and weeks. “Wow, look at these fashionable and suave individuals!”, you say to yourself, since you are most likely not with any friends. Nonetheless, the self-confidence in you grows and grows. The wrinkled grey t-shirt that served you so well in the past now reminds you of the backside of a leathery hag.
Then comes a spark of realisation. Perhaps, if you bought that neon yellow t-shirt with felt purple lightning patches on it, then you too shall transcend the wrought-iron chains of normality. You stride in to the nearest Topman waving £5 notes aloft in the air as if to say “Yes! I am here! Don’t you worry, fashionable young children with your looks of disdain. I will be one of you soon!”. Risk trying it on in the changing rooms? Of course not. You are not 12, so ‘S’ is thrown to the floor in disgust. And ‘L’ is for fat people. ‘M’ it is.
You slap the t-shirt down on the counter with a tender nervousness, basted heavily in a sheen of misplaced arrogance. The sparkles on the t-shirt reflect the glittering admiration in the cashier’s eyes. Or was that pitiful scorn? Either way, the transaction is complete. The new t-shirt is whipped on with all the tactility and grace of Michael J. Fox on Celebrity Masterchef and you step outside, emerging into resplendent sunlight, reborn, as a fashionable, stylish young man.
Then all the kids outside Burger King laugh at you in their own wrinkly grey t-shirts, and the deep shade of red your face turns clashes horribly with the technicolour monstrosity that you just spent your week’s wages on.
Want more from this author? How about a story on Katie Price
Or for a related article, try The Everyman’s Guide To Learning The Guitar
In early 1959, a group of experienced mountain climbers and hikers decided to go for a mountain climb, and hike. Not the most exciting of news, but don’t worry, it gets better. The hike took place in the “Ural Mountains”, which are henceforth to be known as the “Ural-Going-To-Die Mountains”. The local translation of the exact mountain they were hiking on is “The Mountain of the Dead”. Presumably, no one spoke the regional dialect. However, the subsequent horror that befell them makes my jaw befall, and my bowels befail.
As the group worked their way up the mountain, they were hindered by a blustering snowstorm (read: the Devils smokescreen). The loss in sense of direction caused them to go further up the mountain than they intended. The most likely explanation is they were trying to get as close as humanly possible to God, since he was the only one who would be able to save them. Spoiler: He didn’t.
It is impossible for anyone to know what happened on the night of February 2nd 1959, after the hikers set up camp for the night. The unspeakable terror lives only in the seared and sullied pre-frontal lobes of the nine dead hikers. Below are the observations made by the team of rescuers who found the abandoned camp site. Below are also the horrors that will be plaguing my nightmares for many years:
1. Their tent was found ripped open from the inside out. Try and think of anything that could make you literally tear your way out of a tent in the middle of the night, and run off with no equipment or clothes into a dark snowy mountain range, barefoot. And this is only the beginning.
2. One hiker was missing her tongue. My personal (and very probable) theory is that after seeing “The Scariest Fucking Thing Ever”, she literally chewed off her own tongue so that she could never speak of it again and relive the horror. Either that, or TSFTE pulled it out her mouth and ate it because her screams engorged its appetite too much.
3. Four of the victims’ clothing contained substantial levels of radiation. As you may remember from a previous installment in the “Unexplained Mysteries” series, high radiation equals fucked up shit. Ask Gloria Ramirez‘ doctor.
4. One of the victims had a crushed chest, with no external injuries. The only logical explanation is that he was hit by a ghost truck. Imagine what kind of vehicle Death himself would drive on his many journeys to earth. Shit. One official states that it was almost as if the bodies had been crippled under an “immense pressure”. I personally like to think they had been crippled under “peer pressure”. The leader of the group did it as a joke and everyone else joined in to be popular.
Let’s recap. Running terrified (and naked) into a mountain range in the middle of the night. No tongue. Nuclear powers. And ribs that looks like the remnants of a packet of Doritos. Soviet investigators official stance was that the deaths were caused by a “compelling unknown force”. I personally prefer “The Scariest Fucking Thing Ever”, but I don’t think government officials are allowed to swear in their reports.
So whilst the most scientifically accurate explanation is pissed-off demons, another group of hikers reported seeing bright orange spheres in the sky that night. OK, so maybe it was aliens. Either way, we’re screwed.
There are several phases in learning how to play a musical instrument. In Spain, they say ‘a tocar un instrumento’, which literally translates as ‘to touch an instrument’. And, let’s be honest, that’s about as far as most of you will get.
Stage 1: Admiration
That skull-splintering solo from your favourite song. I know it, you know it. You incorrectly finger along every time it plays on the radio (read: plays on youtube) and intensely flap your tongue like a dehydrated Gene Simmons. The combination gives you the overall demeanour of a pilled-up sex pest, but that doesn’t matter right now. Because YOU FUCKING ROCK. The guitar player is Thor, and he wields the mighty Mjolnir, smashing his way through your inner ear canal. Your life’s goal has manifested itself. Learn instrument, and get bitches.
Stage 2: The Buying (or, how I learnt to stop having any money, and love the unnecessary)
The amount of research done into which instruments are best is directly proportional to how much of a fuck you give. Flying V? Gnarly. Banjo? Toe-tappingly awesome. Ukelele? Seductive. Each guitar, cringingly worse than the previous, serves its own specific function, and no “expert” , or “smart person who knows exactly what they are talking about” can tell you otherwise. Enter shop. Buy shiny thing. Leave.
Stage 3: Depression
Your average guitar has around 20 frets. Your more-than-average guitar has around 6 strings. And your definitely average self has only 4 fingers on the left hand. As you try and learn the simplest of chords, the fingers on your hand will flail and spasm like frogs legs in an electrical storm. The task is impossible. Think about the last time you used your little finger. Seriously, think about it. Attempt to contort this frivolous appendage at your own peril. It shall not obey.
Stage 4: Petulant Acceptance
I NEVER WANTED TO PLAY IT ANYWAY!