Archive | January, 2015

Bedford Corn Exchange! An increasingly non profit making venue!

28 Jan

The latest brochure for Bedford’s Corn Exchange has just landed on my desk. I wish it hadn’t. I was feeling quite positive up until this juncture. Go on then I said to myself, let’s have a look!

To save time there’s a sort of “At a Glance” page at the end called “Diary At A Glance at which point I’ll confess that as there’s sod all of even the remotest interest in the brochure I’m padding this blog out with random thoughts!

Tough if I wanted to see “New Year in Vienna 2015” or the Philharmonia Orchestra or Bedford Comedy Club as all the dates have gone although the new brochure has only just appeared in the tourist info rack. The first two events appeal to me as much as root canal surgery and I’ve heard very mixed reviews as to the calibre of the comedy to the point where it was suggested a complaint be made to Trading Standards but let’s have a look what is still to come!

Ebola comes across as more fun!

Ebola comes across as more fun!

There’s a night of “Songs that Won the War” on Feb 4th though I always thought is was soldiers and huge loss of life, the photo is enough to make you wince and turn the page over where you will see a Mister Buster Bloodvessel of group Bad Manners and boy does he look rough. No thanks. One…maybe two at a push hit wonders with “Lip Up Fatty” and The Can Can from 30odd years back. Welcome back to Bedford.

Buster is coming to Bedford, that's why he's terrified!

Buster is coming to Bedford, that’s why he’s terrified!

Wow! Talking Quality…Alan Carr tops up his pension plan with a tour of every Crap Town in the UK (& Ireland). Bedford on 22nd Feb and if you miss this one or can’t get enough of his sense of humour which is on a par with sciatica he’s also coming to Cambridge (twice), Milton Keynes, Northampton (twice) and most bizarrely the post apocalyptic Dunstable which really is a shit hole of such spectacularly low quality! So much so that it puts Bedford on the same level as Florence!

26th Feb..a Neil Diamond tribute. I thought the basic element was that the tributer had to carry a passing resemblance to the original but not in this case. £20.00! And on it goes…zzzzz! Then another tribute, this time it’s Michael Jackson and according to the blurb it will have you believing for just a moment…that it’s really him. No it won’t. He’s dead, not coming back..not even as a zombie with bits of bone showing through..which reminds me, there was a programme on telly a few weeks back called The Autopsy of Michael Jackson which sadly I missed but a very radical opportunity to see Jackson being dissected I imagine. I hope “his” kids didn’t stay up as they might have found it distressing but much more interesting than when they cut the elephant up.

Buster tribute act! Can you name the film?

Buster tribute act! Can you name the film?

And that’s about it! No Hawkwind which we enjoyed and no Psychic Sally although she’s still doing the other venues and will turn up in the autumn when Bedford is bleak and miserable instead of now when Bedford is bleak….And they wonder why the Council is losing money and takings are far less than what they promised!

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Everyone’s Heading To Bedford!

23 Jan

You’d better get used to it! MPs visiting their respective Bedford candidates. It’s easy work for the local free papers. Send a photographer out to wherever the visiting MP is, some hostel, hospital department, a company selling components for illegal arms shipments or the local scratchy chlamydia clinic. If there’s mileage they’ll be there! And there’s going to be this increasing grand parade of the inept between now and election day!

But here’s an unusual one. The rather unkempt looking old bloke shown in the middle is actually Francis Maude who is a minister. Can you believe that! Francis has come to visit a local dentist after being told about by (and I quote the words of Saint Francis himself) our excellent local MP Richard Fuller who is also of a Conservative persuasion.

Francis Maude and some people!

Francis Maude and some people!

The odd thing about this is that Richard Fuller is nowhere to be seen. MPs particularly the extra special ones don’t usually make random visits to dentists in distant towns without the local MP being involved and clinging on like a limpet so where is he? Maybe he’s scared of the dentist, out defending the Hospital from closure like everyone seems to be or maybe he’s just busy doing “extra” work for his numerous consultancy jobs which looked to have brought Richard an additional £61,395 this last year on top of his MPs wage and those glorious expenses!

At least Patrick Hall turned up when Emma Reynolds MP called by!

At least Patrick Hall turned up when Emma Reynolds MP called by!

Bedford rated safest place in England

23 Jan

What’s happened to “Kicking of The Week” I hear you say! Has Bedford improved, is our safety assured? Well the answer is NO! In fact duffings of varying intensity, broken eye sockets, stabbings and random robbing seems to have increased with one vicious attack even getting on the telly and in the national papers last November! So fast and thick have reports about flailing fists, street muggings, sharp implements and the odd punctured abdomen come in we couldn’t keep up with things!

Before and slightly after. Most certainly NOT halloween make up!

Before and slightly after. Most certainly NOT halloween make up!

Here’s one from a Halloween night out when a nocturnal young lady and her pal were on the receiving end of a seriously good duffing up at 4am on the Embankment! We have a town centre ringed with CCTV yet these almost weekly incidents rarely seem to get followed up with arrests! I wouldn’t be seen in Bedford at 4am, in fact blink and you’ll miss me at 4pm!

The good news is that one assault that resulted in four squad cars racing to the scene was soon resolved with lightening speed when the suspect withdrew the complaint! Probably out of fear of a worse battering I’d suggest! That’ll keep the crime figures down a bit! Not much but we like to be positive!

Bedford Labour Party Issue Press Release! Shock News..

22 Jan

Councillor comes with his battered old suit and his head all filled with plans Says it’s not for himself nor the fame or the wealth..But to help his fellow man!

Ten years later where is he now? He’s ditched all the old ideas   Milked all the life from the old cash cow  And now he’s got a fine career!

 I don’t know why but when I see the amount of expenses that Bedford Borough councillors pull in compared to their visibility I just go apoplectic . I want to pace about shouting rude words and waving my hands about..in fact I’m going to do just that! Back soon… !!%$^£$%^&*()%$£.     That’s better. Just! 

I don't know what they've got against that shop behind them!

I don’t know what they’ve got against that shop behind them!

Have a look at the picture! There’s quite a few councillors holding little placards saying how we are all £1000 worse off under the tories. And the rest! But I don’t need these goons to tell me and the funny thing about several of these fine upstanding people namely Labour dinosaurs Cllr Colleen Atkins and Cllr Sue Oliver is they are both over £101,000 better off under the Lib Dem Mayor since they last got elected. That’s because they have opted to support the Lib Dems in Bedford and the rest of the Labour gang seemed to have opted to watch telly!

The latest Labour news is that after the last Mayoral candidate Penny Fletcher threw in the towel last September, with just over fourteen weeks to go before the big day and wasting time and money promoting Penny they now have a new bloke prepared to give current mayor Dave Hodgson a run for his money. Although as I’ve said before with various Labour stalwarts in the Mayor’s cabinet and earning circa £21,000 a year for the privilege I don’t see much challenging going on. In fact I don’t see anything going on. But at least Tim Oliver has met the two local Labour candidates for parliament one of whom, the very dreary Patrick Hall might get back in and another who stands no chance!

So determined are Labour to save us from another five years of coalition ruling and more vicious cuts they have opened up a HQ somewhere in town and are in the free paper to prove it! Although I’ve studied the picture and can’t see the Mayoral candidate amongst the hoards!

Dull Dull Dull Dull Dull: Let there be light!

Dull Dull Dull Dull Dull: Let there be light!

Maybe he hasn’t got his working class flat cap on! I did look to see if Lib Dem Dave H was there as he usually crowbars himself into any gathering! (that’s satire for the benefit of the councils legal people who read Bypass!)

I have this suspicion that a tactical decision has been made to concentrate on the parliamentary seat and go through the motions for the position of mayor which will keep the current mayor sweet and boost the very dull and monotonous Patrick Hall’s chance of becoming an MP again. And then if Labour grasp a smidgeon of power we can look forward to another five years of serious austerity and more coalition malarkey!

New Labour Flat Cap Working Class Bloke seeks to become Mayor!

New Labour Flat Cap Working Class Bloke seeks to become Mayor!

How much excitement can we take?

How much excitement can we take?

Jihaddams Family!

20 Jan

With due thanks to THE ADDAMS FAMILY and you may need some knowledge of these TV / Film legends to fully appreciate this and we suggest starting with the original theme tune which goes…

The Addams Family

The Addams Family

Doodly Dum Click Click, Doodly Dum Click Click, Doodly Dum Doodly Dum Doodly Dum Click Click

 

It’s really gruesome stu-uff

They’ll treat you pretty rough

Then they’ll cut your head off

Jihaddams Family

The worst possible drea-um

They like it when you screa-um

You wouldn’t want to meet –em

Jihaddams Family

(and its not a real hand before you complain)

(and we left the joke out about Uncle Ashnikkov as well)

Everyone's favourite fundamentalists!

Everyone’s favourite fundamentalists!

Its a Sharia THING!

Its a Sharia THING!

Battle Picture Library!

19 Jan

Well well! Who’s that dishevelled looking chap coming up the garden path with greasy hair, stubble and looking very unkempt? Why it’s Skip Hunter our resident hunter of skips! I heard you’d had a bit of a bad turn drinking cider and chrome polish ending up in a coma like in that episode of Father Ted!

Er..yeah..sort off!

Jolly good fun for boys!

Jolly good fun for boys!

So what you got to show us today Skip?

Nothing much, just loads more comics from the 1970 from the blue paper skip round the back of Tesco. They smell musty and old!

Yes Skip! Yes they certainly do whiff a bit! Quite pungent with an air of baby’s nappy!

We won! Ner nerr!

We won! Ner nerr!

I like the way they glorify war, killing, the British stiff upper lip, all the heroes have names like Charlie, Montrose, Jock and even Skip whilst the opposition are just Japs, Nips, Jerry, Hun and so on and they go AAAAAIIIEEEE when they are blown up! Quite a lot of Arabs get killed as well!

That little one looks good Skip!

The full reality of war, great summer holiday reading!

The full reality of war, great summer holiday reading!

Yep! Battle Picture Library, there’s some more called Commando..all good stuff, derring do! Very realistic, the true horrors of the front!

Great Skip, you must be quite pleased with your haul

Not really I’ve not sold that lot from last year and I was trying to fish some porn out, a much better resale value but it was too far in! Can I come in and have a cup of tea!

No! Sorry Skip….you and your bin liner of old comics really do stink!

 

More skip related tomfoolery with Skip Hunter in next week’s edition of Bedford Bypass readers! Although I think a bit of professional help might be needed!

Creating your own landscape!

15 Jan

We are anarchists, we do not embrace day to day political structures but we know people who do. We have a soft but maybe radical edge, you can decide on this, the pen, the jape, the occasional shout and a cup of tea are our preferred options, they may or may not be yours. We are sometimes dreamers, doodlers and psychogeographers, sometimes not. We all share a passion for the edgelands and urban green routes that are a place for reflection and dreaming. Places where for a short time we can breathe and become more than just economic entities, where structures of the nearby town fade for a moment and you discern the past!

Where you are not allowed to exist!

Where you are not allowed to exist!

We are merely a small band of urbane enthusiasts, renegades from northern climes, born in Bedford types, amateurs and latter day wanderers, passionate observers of urban living, surviving alleys, forgotten walls from deceased building to the green fields beyond, the social cultural and built environment punctuated by sirens and screams and forgotten children playing with forgotten toys. We believe that none of these singularities exist in seclusion but rely on each other to flourish and foster and create the living pulsing backdrop that is our home. The effects may be positive or negative and we believe that ridding society of its malaise requires simple cooperation not votes. We strongly recommend you think for yourself!

Although seek and ye shall find a way in!

Although seek and ye shall find a way in!

We believe that the recent past and its rich variety of the grand and the ordinary, cherished and neglected buildings, bridges, underpasses, lost nooks and crannies continue to play a part in our shared consciousness and sense of identity, continue to influence who we are and remind us of how we worked, rested and played. All towns and cities have an unwritten history, ghosts yet to be born, rhythms, secret places with secret heartbeats.

We will continue to create a real space for discussing, engaging and enjoying, perhaps occasionally even campaigning for, the multilayered complexities of life, comfortable and egalitarian for some harsh ruthless and destructive for others.

We will continue to meet, gather, speculate, mooch, amble, flaneur (look it up) drift / derive (and this as well) collaborate, connect, gently protest and point at naked kings when we see fit. We will speculate, agitate, ruminate, publicize, dream and dream again over afternoon tea on walks, talks and various outings.

Where wonders wait to be rediscovered! Squalor as art...

Where wonders wait to be rediscovered! Squalor as art…

All we need is for you to keep looking at what we have to say, get in touch but only if you want to, make us believe you exist, keep us informed of your events and activities across and around Bedford and its majestic Bypass that countenance reveries of better places and we promise to create some of our own for your appreciation. Did I tell you we are anarchists?

Gill, Debs, Steve, Mon Pierre, and Skip!

On Ebay…Charlie Hebdo going cheap…see the profit!

14 Jan

If you want to see how quickly a truly Western world shattering horrific event can turn into a grotesque money making carnival the “up yours” edition in a special English language version of Charlie Hebdo is available for you to purchase for circa £700 on Ebay! Own a piece of history. Read it from time to time. Stroke that cover. Show it your friends in a few years!

Its value is sure to increase! *

Even better you can buy tee shirts, badges, key fobs…you name it you can have it! Just put Charlie Hebdo into Ebay and get ready to spend spend spend! Other items related to acts of terrorism and murder are available!

*Or fall but that’s your look out!

And why not!

And why not!

Je Suis Un Bypass (The Missing Bit)

13 Jan

Extra added value (thanks to Dan although I helped by reading the email fairly quickly)

Do the Hokey Cokey then you turn around....

Do the Hokey Cokey then you turn around….

Je Suis un Bypass

13 Jan

I haven’t really felt up to writing. There’s some reasonably funny stuff been half sketched out but given events in Paris last week things seemed trivial. We visit Paris quite regularly, most years in fact. We are quite comfortable there but like most cities you need a rough knowledge of how the city fits together and a dash of common sense. Police sirens puncture the air all through the day and I guess as they are quite different to UK sirens you tend to notice them a bit more!

But last weeks events left a hole in my ability to imagine. I’m not making any connection with Charlie Hebdo, I had heard of it and scanned through the odd copy mostly as a result of its printing of the Danish cartoons. I don’t understand religion and I certainly struggle with the whole concept of fundementalism, that point where everything you think, breath and do is based on texts from a thousand plus years ago!

The new edition of Charlie Hebdo will it seems carry on the tradition of having a go at those that need it and apart from a new cover of the Prophet if indeed he looked like that they are pointing out that many of those doing the Je Suis thing have never bought a copy and whose political views might be diametrically opposed to the contents!

It's pretty good this marching business what ho!

It’s pretty good this marching business what ho!

Here’s the line up of world leaders wandering round Paris and at the front of the march just so you don’t forget who’s the boss, Cameron is towards the end of the line and I couldn’t get an importable copy of the image with him in. Agadoo springs to mind, or that New York song with high kicks.What a complete load of despots and hypocrites the lot of them. Benyamin Netanyahoo (sic) is there next to the man with the hat, don’t mention the Israeli bombing of Gaza which also saw 17 journalists killed, Tunisia, Turkey drone drone drone! There’s some nameless bloke that seems to be trying to cop a feel of the equally nameless woman at the side, after all it is Paris! And in a week or so it’ll will be mostly forgotten apart from by those directly affected. Then something else will happen! Maybe in Nigeria where we can tut and turn over or maybe closer to home where we can connect to the horror and vicissitude of it all and you know what? I can see it getting a whole lot worse.

Anyway now that the mental block has been shoved aside myself and my increasingly small circle of chums (one has cleared off to Norwich) will be scribbling ideas down as of now!