Thursday, May 26, 2011

Sluts and the Men Who Love Them

This weekend in Melbourne, SlutWalk will be parading through the streets. What's it all about? Here's a good article by one of the organisers, my pal Clem Bastow. And another one by fellow organiser/pal, Karen Pickering.

And of course there is my contribution, which is irresponsible, offensive, and adds nothing of value whatsoever. But maybe you'll get a chuckle from the article about which critics rave "you sound like a a right tosser, a throw back to some grunting heaving past which most have moved on from … read a book!"

Anyway look I thought I'd just weigh in an say why, as a man who, with some sense of trepidation, calls himself a feminist, I'm quite in favour of SlutWalk and think it's a good idea.

I like the idea of SlutWalk because I quite want to see a bunch of ladies in their undies.

No, Wait! Let me start again...

Firstly, I think the talk of "reclaiming" the word slut is a bit of a red herring. It doesn't really matter whether you think of it as reclaiming or not. Everyone knows it's a nasty word that's usually used in a nasty way. A negative way.

But the point of SlutWalk (to ME, I stress; and if others have a different take, please please please let a thousand frigging flowers bloom, it's all good) is that it's NOT negative. It's positive. It's happy. It's even lighthearted. It's not an angry thing, it's not a hateful thing or an anti-male thing.

And I don't think it's trying to make women call themselves sluts, or dress as sluts. It's not trying to make women do anything except stand up and say, "we will not be attacked and mistreated no matter what we wear, no matter who we have sex with, and no matter how well or badly we fit into someone else's ideas about femininity.

It's not a battle between men and women here, it's a battle between decent people and indecent people, between arseholes and non-arseholes, between people who would say that even if a woman walks down the street stark naked, even if a woman is a prostitute, a stripper, or, yes, a SLUT, there is no excuse for assaulting her, abusing her or treating her as less than human.

Is SlutWalk "giving men what they want"? Maybe - but then since when was the main aim of feminism to deny men what they want? I am sure plenty of guys will miss the point, I'm sure plenty of guys will turn out just to leer. But hey, you know what? Fuck 'em. For me the point of SlutWalk is that it doesn't matter a damn what sexists want or don't want. That's why it's happening - because there are women who want to say, we do what we like regardless of what you want us to do. Women who say, when I decide what to wear, how to talk, how to act, how many people I want to have sex with, I'm basing my decision on what I want. Not on the fact you want to ogle me, not on the fact you DON'T want to ogle me, not on the fact you wish I was more demure, or more promiscuous, or more ladylike, or less girly. Women who say, in essence, we are going to live our lives on the terms that men tend to just because. Screw your expectations.

This is why I like SlutWalk: because I want to send the message that when the bastards of the world, the paternalists, the misogynists, the rape apologists and the straight up-and-down arseholes, snarl the word "slut" at a woman because she's not conforming with the way he wants femininity to manifest itself, the decent, well-adjusted people of the world will LAUGH IN THEIR FACES.

You want to call them sluts? Well that is just fine, guys. We will throw it back in your faces, laugh our heads off, and go on living our lives. Not just the sluts, but the men who love them, the children they raise, and everyone else who doesn't accept the right of the pricks to shape the world.

Not everyone is comfortable with SlutWalk, which is fine. It's an emotive word, and I'm not going to tell anyone that because they don't like the idea, they're not proper feminists or unconcerned with women's rights. There's room for all opinions. But I DO know that the Slutwalk has been organised by proud, gutsy females who will fight for the cause of decency all their lives, and who are making this statement this way because it resonates with them and so many others.

The SlutWalk, for me, is about we comrades standing up like Sarah in Labyrinth, and crying, "You Have No Power Over Us!" Call us sluts, call us whores, call us fags, call us dykes, call us pussies, call us anything you want, but you have no power over us. Your abuse isn't going to give you control. We're going to win, and you're going to lose, dying with the word SLUT on your sad little lips. Get used to the new world, dickheads.

March on, siblings.

Monday, May 23, 2011


As you will remember, the Rapture was on Saturday. If you followed my instructions, you are no doubt living it up in Paradise with the rest of us good Christians. However, let's face it, most of you are irredeemable bastards, so I thought I should keep a diary of my experiences since being Raptured. I started the diary at 6pm Saturday, when the blessed event happened. Some of my observations were already shared on Twitter, but this is a more comprehensive, no-holds-barred, frank look at life in Heaven that I hope you find enlightening and instructive as you dodge molten lava and have Satan nibble your earlobes while waiting for the destruction of the universe. Welcome!


Saturday, 21st May


6.01pm: I feel that travelling at this speed while naked is not healthy. A distinct flapping effect.

6.03pm: From up here, everyone looks like ants. Ironically, the ants look extremely large. Asked David Attenborough why as he floated past on an updraft. He explained that at this height, the ants' natural ascorbic acid creates a prism effect, making them look over three thousand times their actual size. I had a follow-up question but he started accusing me of staring at his "manly jolly-parts", so I didn't press the issue.

6.06pm: Well, here we are. A lot of people standing around looking a bit lost. Everyone covering their crotches with their hands, or magazines. Asked the man next to me where you get the magazines. He looked very shifty and ran away.

6.10pm: Some angels have appeared and given us clothes. In Heaven you get to wear whatever you want, but until we're checked in we all have to wear Jedi robes. There seems to be no explanation for this, but we're all afraid to ask because the head angel looks really mean. Well to be fair he doesn't really look mean but he has a very off-putting mole right between his eyes. So it seems mean to call him mean but I bet he is because that mole would make anyone bitter. The angels are herding us towards the check-in desk.

6.12pm: The concierge here is VERY rude.

6.15pm: Having checked in, we are each given a room. My room is quite nice and has a view of the river (not sure which one). Unfortunately though, everyone has to share a toilet. My toilet is shared with Scott Stapp, the singer from Creed. I foresee this causing problems in future.

6.45pm: Relaxing in the common room. From some of the behaviour here, frankly I am surprised these people got Raptured at all. Kirk Cameron just whispered in my ear that he is "bi-curious". Don't know what to do with this information. Spared having to make decision on the spot because Kirk was distracted by Fred Nile's elephant impression.

7pm: Before dinner was summoned to God's office for post-Rapture debrief. God looks much as I expected he would, but wears horn-rimmed glasses. Also he has the feet of a weasel for some reason. He asked me if I would like some tea, and I accepted, which made him cry. "We have no tea," he kept moaning over and over. It was a bit usnettling, but he got over it, and asked me how I liked Heaven so far. I said it was great, but the towels in my room were a little small. He promised to look into it, but in a very sarcastic tone, so I don't know. I asked him what people in Heaven did for fun. He said chia pets were very popular. We then spent about a minute just sort of staring tenseley at each other. Finally God gave me a kiss and told me he was happy I was there and to see him if I ever needed anything. I asked him for a coffee and he punched me. On the way out of his office I ran into Jesus, who tried to sell me a capgun. I didn't have any money so I couldn't. Jesus called me a girl, but I think he was just over-tired.

7.30pm: Dinner time! We assembled in the mess hall for dinner. Dinner was a little late, which went down badly with some of the Raptured. In particular, George Pell becamse very rambunctious, banging his fork on the table and making loud shrieking noises until a basket of bread was brought to his table. When menus arrived, disappointed to discover that in Heaven you have a choice between two dishes: tuna or devon sandwiches. I asked an angel whether it was the same every night; he said on Friday nights you get a chicken stock cube.

7.45pm: Dinner becoming very tedious. Partly because the tablecloths show such a lack of flair; mainly because I am seated next to the Archangel Gabriel, who has been monopolising the conversation by reciting his list of reasons That 80s Show should be brought back. I tried to break the monotony by asking about his wife, but he didn't even seem to notice me.

8pm: Frankly, this devon is sub-par.

8.21pm: After dinner we adjourn to the recreation area. It is becoming apparent that there is a certain amount of tension between the pre-dead and the Raptured, or "Rapties", as they call us. I was discussing this issue with Guy Sebastian, and he said it was just because Daryl Somers had spent the whole time since he got here naked rubbing himself against the Bronte sisters, but I think it goes deeper. It's racism, IMO.

8.34pm: Cliff Richard is drunk already. He's strutting around the hot tub, telling everyone he's changed his name to Lovepistol von Gigglepants, and demanding chicken Twisties.Jesus is having a word to him, but Cliff keeps poking his belly and making Jesus laugh. I don't know why Jesus is so ticklish.

9pm: Back to my room. It's lights out at 10pm, which seems unfair. And also pointless given that in Heaven everyone has night vision. Trying to program my clock radio, which seems needlessly complicated. I tested the alarm and was nearly frightened to death when a porcelain Virgin Mary shot out the top of the clock and squirted breast milk in my face. Hard to concentrate because of the sound of Scott Stapp gargling in the bathroom. He asked if I wanted to come gargle with him, but I said I didn't actually know what that would entail. He said it would be incredibly painful so I said no.

9.23pm: Just about to turn in for the night when I discovered Rene Goscinny in there. Says he's doing "research" and will be finished soon. Give up and go out drinking with Charlemagne.

9.30pm: Charlemagne is not all he's cracked up to be. Keeps yelling out to women, asking if they want to see his scar. Wasn't so bad until he said it to Jennifer Aniston. Now she thinks I'm a weirdo because I'm his friend.

9.36pm: Heaven's drinks selection is incredibly limited. There are only three brands of beer, or milk. Admittedly up here milk gives you superpowers, but still.

9.57pm: Cliff Richard has reached the maudlin stage. Keeps telling me I remind him of his mother and asking me if I'll go on a rowboating holiday with him. Said yes just to shut him up, hope he doesn't remember this tomorrow.

10.34pm: Back in my room. Stapp STILL gargling! Has he been doing it non-stop? He must have taken at least a short break, because he is now wearing a cowboy outfit. Asked him why, he said "Jesus told me to". If we weren't in Heaven would be inclined to disbelieve this.

10.39pm: Goscinny still in my bed. Refuses to get out. Says if I get in "just to cuddle", he'll put me in the new Asterix book. Why do people lie so much in Heaven?

11pm: Can't sleep. Miranda Devine throwing pebbles at my window.

11.03pm: Miranda will not give up. Has started yelling, asking if I want "Seven Minutes In Heaven". Leaned out to tell her how inappaopriate this was, and saw things I never want to see again.

11.34pm: Finally asleep. Not sure how I'm writing this. It's a Heaven thing I guess.

Sunday, 22nd May

3am: Had a fright. Turns out Heaven has a rule where seraphs get free access to all mini-bars. Woke up to a bunch of angels fighting over a can of Pepsi and a Kit-Kat.

7am: Woken up by Jesus storming into the bedroom, banging a saucepan with a spoon and screaming "On your feet, Cocks!" No idea why, since once we were up he just made us stand in a field for an hour. Asked him what we were supposed to be doing, he said, "Looking for animal shapes in the clouds". Didn't feel I could ask any more questions after that.

8.30am: Breakfast time. Everyone gets rice bubbles. I asked if I could have some honey, but the waitress just laughed. Seemed strange, but then I realised the waitress was Katharine Hepburn, which made a lot more sense.

9am: Had some free time, so wandered about the place taking stock. There are some lovely landscaped gardens in Heaven, though I feel they should install some surveillance cameras given the number of drug deals being done openly about the place. Passed a bush where Elvis and Marie Curie were frantically copulating. Found this less strange than I would have expected.

9.24am: Not surprised that Mother Teresa is here. A little surprised that she's working the main floor at a motor show.

9.35am: Dropped in on a concert in the park. God encourages musical expression in Heaven, but the only music he likes is Joshua Kadison. This was the subject of quite an argument last night, when Elton John asked if he could put on a show, and God agreed as long as he only played the songs of Joshua Kadison. Elton became very angry, but God won the argument by saying, "I know what you get up to at night", and twisting Elton's nipple really hard. Anyway this morning Elton is playing in the park. The only song he knows is "Jessie", so he's playing that a lot, but his delivery is great. Ironically, Joshua Kadison himself was left behind. Asked Jesus why this was, and he told me it was a "motor skills thing".

10am: Playing netball. This is apparently compulsory in Heaven, seven days a week. God is the umpire. He seems to enjoy the job a little bit too much.

11.30am: Still playing netball. Exhausting.

12am: Finally lunchtime. We don't eat lunch in the mess hall, but rather in Jesus's Dinner Theatre, which means we have to listen to his stand-up while we eat. He's pretty awful - mostly relying on obscene actions with the holes in his hands, and a lot of jokes about Stalin. For some reason he thinks Stalin is incredibly funny. Quite relieved when he finishes and St Peter comes on with his performing puppies.

1.30pm: More netball.

2.30pm: Was ushered into a seminar: "Heaven: Your New Home", where we learned about Heaven. I was sat next to Fred Nile. Tried to strike up a conversation, but he was sulking because Kirk Cameron had put the moves on me and not him. Keeps carving "I H8 Ben" in his desk with a compass. The lecture was very informative though. We found out the system of government in Heaven is basically Republican, where God is the president, Jesus is Prime Minister, and Jane Austen is Foreign Secretary.

2.55pm: Met Jane Austen. Asked her why Heaven needed a Foreign Secretary. She stuck two fingers up my nose and threw me into a wall. "Any more questions, bitch?" she hissed.

3.18pm: Time for the Daily 3.18 Prayers. We all gather on the Prayer Diamond and throw confetti at God while he does burnouts on his motorbike.

4pm. Stopped in for tea with Stephen Hawking. He told me he still doesn't believe in an afterlife. I told him he was in denial. He said he refuses to accept the evidence of his own eyes and will only accept proofs in manila folders. It was weird to hear him talking without his voicebox. I never knew he had a Jamaican accent.

4.58pm: Nasty incident in the common room, Einstein just referred to Archbishop Jensen as "Raptie scum". Jensen pulled a knife and things look like getting ugly.

6pm: We're all in the common room, still shaken after the rumble in the common room. Justin Bieber just got his guitar out and started a singalong of "Beautiful in My Eyes", but our hearts just aren't in it. Einstein's gashed thigh just keeps rising in our brains.

8pm: Dinner still hasn't arrived. Rumours of a chefs' strike are sweeping the hall. Julia Child is said to be demanding greater leave loading. Heston Blumenthal is standing on his table urinating on people. Anarchy looms. Jesus came in to try to keep the peace, but retreated under a blizzard of fortune cookies.

8.28pm: Dinner finally here. We are eating in an atmosphere of sullen rebellion. God wandering round the hall muttering "Second day and already everything's gone to bloody buggery". The Virgin Mary keeps making desperate attempts to lighten the mood with references to Waldorf Salad. Nobody's buying it. Particularly not Prunella Scales, who's been demanding to be return to earth since she got here.

9pm: Retired to bed. Have worked out a system with Goscinny whereby I cuddle him for half an hour, then he has to get into the wardrobe and let me sleep. He says my character's name will be "Beneficix".

9.15pm: Can faintly hear Miranda down the road, yelling at Hugh Grant. Can faintly hear Taylor Hanson in the next room, tattooing his brothers in their sleep. Uncomfortable. Jesus short-sheeted my bed. I think it was retaliation for my mistaking him for Sophie B. Hawkins yesterday.

9.35pm: Finally it's quiet. Feel myself drifting off to sleep, to my great relief, since tomorrow we start "basic training". Not sure what this means, but noticed St Paul squatting outside the information centre fingering a machete. A bit nervous.

Monday, 23rd May

2.46pm: For fuck's sake, that dickhead is gargling AGAIN.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

People Get Ready...

Hi! Have you heard about The RAPTURE? It's coming tomorrow, May 21st, and it's just about the most exciting thing to happen to the world of People and Things since the premiere of the film Annie.

Basically what will happen is all the good people in the world will get sucked up to Heaven, a lot like what happens when you run a vacuum cleaner over a peanut shell. But imagine your vacuum cleaner's bag is heaven, and the peanut shell is a good Christian. Like maybe Fred Nile or TV's Patricia Heaton.

However, the bad people are like those little bits of sticky stuff that you don't really know what they are but you can't get them off the carpet unless you bend down and use your nails for, like, AGES. But God has no time to use His nails, he is a busy man with many tsunamis to calibrate, so he uses his vacuum cleaner, and all the people who are not good Christians will get left on earth and be ruled over by the Anti-Christ, AKA "Stevie".

So it's going to be fun for everyone really: for good Christians, eternity in Heaven, where anal sex is permissible as long as it's with an angel, and friendly ghosts are everywhere. For non-Christians, slavery and volcanoes, which has its drawbacks, but on the upside anal sex will be OK down here as well.

However, the Rapture itself may be a little bit harrowing, what with the thunder and heavenly light and people going zooming up into the air just as they were handing you your chicken royale. It's going to be a lot like sniffing glue, only better and more frightening. Like sniffing REALLY GOOD glue. And that's why you need:


1. Wear warm, loose-fitting clothing. The Rapture is likely to be fairly chilly because of the low pressure system and Santa Claus, so it's important to wrap up warm so you don't get chilblains. Also your clothes should be loose-fitting so you don't get deep vein thrombosis, because anyone with deep vein thrombosis gets left behind.

2. Keep your head between your knees. When the Rapture comes, it will produce a real jolt, and you could get whiplash if you are not in the brace position. You will not enjoy Heaven if your neck hurts. You won't enjoy earth either. I mean you won't enjoy earth either because there'll be an earthquake and you'll get raped by vultures, but the neck thing will just be salt in the wound.

3. Eat lots of leafy green vegetables. This will be good for digestion and help you lose weight. Anyone with a BMI of over 25 gets left behind, so it's important to eat right and exercise. Now, the Rpature is tomorrow, so you may have left it a little bit late, but leafy vegetables are still great for improving your general sense of wellbeing, and also you will be supporting our local farmers, which would be nice, given they will be left behind because farmers are hated by God.

4. Dance like nobody's watching. This will give everyone a good laugh.

5. Get your financial affairs in order. I'm not really sure what this means, but it seems like good advice. I guess it means, like, paying your phone bill? And take all your money out of your account so you have it to hand, and that way you won't get taken by surprise by the direct debits you forgot you had. The Rapture only takes payment by direct debit, which is annoying, but what can you do?

6. Humanely slaughter your pets. They will miss you when you're gone, and they will suffer under Stevie's iron fist, so best put them out of their misery now. A good thing to do beforehand is scream abuse at them, and maybe torture them a bit, with needles or pliers or something. That way when the end comes they will view it as a relief, and won't be scared.

7. Build an enormous wooden statue in your backyard. This statue can be of anyone you like, but it's important that it be very large, and that you set it on fire at sundown. This way, if you don't get taken up by the Rapture, you're in with a chance of randomly attracting the attention of another god who might take you instead. Covering all bases etc.

8. Have your hymen surgically reconstructed. It's worth a shot. God doesn't look into these things too closely. So to speak. If you are a man and are uncomfortable with the idea of having an artifical hymen fitted, dress as a priest.

9. Get a haircut. This isn't necessary, strictly speaking, but let's be honest you look a complete shambles. Do you want to look like a scarecrow when the Rapture comes? Even if it doesn't, get a haircut, you will NEVER EVER find happiness looking like that. Seriously, I tell you this for your own good, smarten yourself up, Shaggy. To be honest, it MIGHT be necessary, if Jesus has any taste.

10. Stop being such a dick.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


There has been a lot of debate in the media lately about whether a family with a combined income of $150,000 is "rich", triggered by the federal government's provocative failure to say they were at any point in time ever.

So I'm here to answer the question: Are they rich?

Well, it all depends on your definition of "rich", of course.

They are certainly not "rich" in the sense of "Oh I just can't decide which yacht to sail down to the shops to buy my new diamond-encrusted microwave".

And they're not rich in the sense of "My life is a lot more relaxed since I became CEO of Microsoft".

And they're not rich in the sense of "Every day I spend $20,000 on high-class prostitutes who are willing to call me 'Atreyu'".

And they're not rich in the sense of "This chocolate cake is so rich and delicious".


They are rich in the sense of "being richer than almost everyone else on Earth".

And they are rich in the sense of "Seriously? You have $150,000 a year and you want welfare? That's a bit frigging rich".

And they are rich in the sense of "Stop bitching about how the government isn't going to give you as much free money".

And they are rich in the sense of "Seriously, dude, just shut up".

So we can see how there are arguments on both sides. On one hand, you can easily say that people who earn that much, while not "rich", obviously have enough money to get by without relying on government handouts, and are far enough at the upper end of the income scale that suggesting cutting their welfare is an "attack on average Australians" is so inaccurate as to be demented.

On the other hand, it's also true that people are incredibly whiny, and that it's an outrageous act of Bolshevik class warfare to force people to pay more tax just because they earn more money, and people are doing it tough and can't do without their welfare payments, and the government's Budget will act as a disincentive for people to get ahead because who on earth would want to have more money if they knew they were going to have a little bit less than they would have had if they had a bit more than that?

So why DOES the government want to punish people for hard work? Why DO they want to criminalise success? Why ARE they going to inflict severe spinal injuries on everyone with two cars?

It is probably because the Prime Minister does not know what it's like to have children.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Crumple Zone

And I used to be strong
And I used to be a man
But now I fold at your feet
Like a burning letter

I'm sitting in my car, late at night, watching the blood well from the lines I've just sliced into my arm, and I'm wondering just why I did it. In hindsight I'll manufacture some kind of explanation, but in the moment all I can think of is, I've got to find a reason for someone to care.

And in the moment, I am out of my mind.

Shaking from head to toe, I grab my phone and I call my wife and ask her to remind me why I'm worth keeping around. She talks me down, but I keep shaking all the way home.

And there you have just one of the recent skirmishes fought between my brain and itself.

To say depression has only just wrapped me in its loving embrace would be wrong. I've been falling into that pit off and on for most of the last 20 years. But it was this year that everything came to a head. It was this year that, as I spun my wheels frantically trying to deal with the release of two books, the writing of two regular columns, my first-ever comedy festival show, a full-time night job and the accompanying sleep deprivation, and providing for a wife and three children, I finally cracked open, and lost my ability to keep it together. Thankfully, this also meant I stopped pretending everything was OK. The meltdown came suddenly, frighteningly and with devastating force, but it was the meltdown I had to have.

It's been a terrifying, strange, surreal, ridiculous time, suddenly finding myself buffeted by waves of panic, sweating and gasping for air and sobbing for no good reason, stricken suddenly by the all-pervading terror that everyone I love has finally become fed up with me and left, as undoubtedly they will, and as undoubtedly I deserve. Suddenly finding myself shrunken and diminished, huddling in a ball against the pain of the world. Suddenly finding myself clenching my teeth and wondering how long I have been. Suddenly finding myself completely unable to cope.

Always the fear, the fear. That an unanswered text message means a friend has cut all ties. That when I'm not around, people talk about me, saying what they REALY think. That I'm pathetic, weak, worthless, and the voice that won't stop whispering to me "Fat Loser, why don't you give up? Nobody could love a THING like you" is right. The creeping feeling that even though I know depression is just an illness for everyone else, maybe I'm that one person for whom it's justified. For whom it's no more than what I deserve.

And the guilt. Knowing what a burden this crisis is placing on the people I love. Knowing how much I must be hurting them. Knowing how hard it is for my family, and cursing myself for my selfishness. The agony of knowing you could ruin lives by leaving, and feeling that you're ruining them even more by staying.

And the mad, hysterical absurdity. The hindsight hilarity of dissolving into tears in the doctor's office, and then explaining through the choking sobs that I'm a comedian. The ludicrousness of my trying to be a rock for my friends and dispense wise advice when I have no idea how to save myself from the treachery of my own psyche. The sick joke of sitting in a room full of friends, all talking and laughing raucously, and feeling lonelier than I have in my life.

And through it I kept writing, and I kept joking, and I stepped up on stage ten times to perform that festival show, cracking jokes about my own death of all things! And I opened up to the world about my problems and let people know, and somehow I struggled through. And I kept breaking down, and gasping for air, and crying, and putting my family through hell, and scaring everyone around me, and reaching out desperately to find someone, anyone, to constantly reassure me that I'm loved, and that the world is, even slightly, a better place for my existence.

I have enough friends who've gone through, and are going through, similar things to know I'm not unique, and I'm not special. I have been struck by an illness, not a romantic genius's curse. And I still don't quite know how to handle it. I don't even know if this blog post is a good idea. I rarely write so personally about myself, and it's possible that what I've written is an awful bunch of old rubbish.

But hopefully it'll go a little way to helping me remember in the dark moments that I'm not alone, and that this too shall pass. The traitor in my head will continue to make his sorties, attacking furiously in an attempt to crush me. Maybe he will succeed, and maybe he won't. I have resolved to fight him. I will keep struggling on, trying to retain my rational mind and keep somewhere at all times that as bad as things get, it won't last forever, that things will be all right, and that most importantly, I'm not alone.

And hopefully, writing this might help others know that they're not alone. I'm so grateful for everyone who has read my work, who's come to see me on stage, who follows me on Twitter etc etc. I owe you all a debt of gratitude, and I know that problems and demons beset many of you too. You're not alone. Darkness can strike us all at any time, but I know there are people who love me - no matter how much it feels, so often, that there are none - and I have to work on remembering that. And I've learned that when you're sick, you need help. You need to seek out those who are trained to help you survive. I'm popping pills like nobody's business, and that is weird and alien to me. But it's what has to be done, and it's no big deal.

Or...perhaps that's all a colossal wank, and I'm kidding myself and this won't really help anyone. A definite possibility. But hopefully my attempt to sort out all the thoughts that have invaded me as a result of this breakdown, to get down in blog form the persistent buzzing in my head, will have a positive effect on someone, somewhere. Hopefully that'll include myself!

Because I know now the desperate flailing, the horrific suffocation that comes when those black waves come crashing over and you find yourself just about incapable of keeping your head up in the face of the merciless tides. But we're all capable. We may have to lean on others from time to time, but we don't have to fall. Tomorrow I may feel them crashing again, and become convinced that none of this is true, but now I have to affirm that it IS.

The scars on my arm are healing. I know I want to live, and even though I don't exactly know how to go about it, I think I will.

Thank you all. You're lovely.

I promise I'll start joking again soon.

I weep on your feet and reach for your hand
And beg for some sign of your love
And I used to be a man
And I used to be strong

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Stand the Heat, Get in the Kitchen!

First of all, apologies for the break in transmission. I haven't been able to muster a blog post for a while, because, well, myriad reasons which hopefully I can soon expand on.

But soft! The main thing is to transmit to you the news of the day!


Yes, my meisterwerk is in stores, on shelves, on sale, available in shops and online and all over the place! Do buy it, it would be a nice thing to do. I promise it's funny, and will hopefully delight and amaze both fans of MasterChef and fans of jokes. Oh, and fans of cool illustrations, which in this case were done by the masterful Steve Keast. So go, buy, read, tell your friends, spread the word, spread the gospel, spread the Chefpion philosophy. And get that #superchef hashtag trending!

Want to know more about Superchef? Why not watch this instructive promo?

Or check out one of the recipes from Superchef: Jessie's Sex Pizza:

Jessie says: Go knead that dough!

And the recipes are the crux of this next bit: a COMPETITION!

Since you are all enormous Superchef fans, you will already be familiar with the useful and nutritious recipes to be found within the tome. Not just the Sex Pizza, but also Steve's Cyanide Noisettes, Esther's Stress Water, and many more.

So what I'm asking from you, Supercheffers, is to see just what you bring the hotplate. Get working on those recipes, make them in the comfort of your own homes, and show us all how they turned out! Send photos of your efforts to, I'll post all dishes on the blog, and the best efforts will receive...


Excited? I know you are! To get those creative juices flowing, here's an example we prepared earlier: one eager chefpion's take on Myst's Apple and Cabbage Puree!

Mmmmm! Is that your tummy I hear rumbling? But I know you can match that, so break out the spatulas! Hop to it! Your work will be seen by...well, a few people. A few people read this blog right? C'mon now, we're cooking with gas! Or electricity, whatever.

And thank you, thank you, thank you for reading. I am very proud of Superchef and I do hope you all enjoy it.