Saturday, 31 October 2009


In 1989 David Hockney accepted a commission to paint the interior of the residents pool at the Roosevelt Hotel, one-time residence of both David Niven and Lindsay Lohan. The resulting fresco makes playful reference to Hockney's earlier fascination with swimming pools whilst elegantly "quoting" from the limited palette of Matisse's 1952 mural La Piscine.

Over time, the work had become damaged and dulled both by the chemicals of the water and the constant contact of the guests rubbing against the floor and walls. Fortunately a full restoration was carried out by highly acclaimed fresco artist iLia Anossov in January 2008.

Imagine my disappointment when my quiet contemplation of the piece was disturbed by a group of Playboy models eating chips, drinking pints of cocktails and wagging their massively overinflated knockers at "boyfriends" who closely resembled baked potatoes with hair plugs.

You let me down, LA. I thought this was going to be classy but you let me down.

Friday, 30 October 2009

San Diego Zoo

Look at this fucker! Mad eh? Pangolin, that.

Some bright spark has made the bold decision to put three "cheeky monkeys" in with the orangutangs. They spend the day arseing about on ropes and pulling the dreadlocks on the massive daddy organutang's thighs. The look of genuine sadness in his little eyes as he hallfheartedly chases them round the pen in an effort to salvage a little dignity in front of his laydeez is going to keep me chuckling for months. He's got a massive face see!

He had the last laugh though, sprinting accross his enclosure to make some complicated sex with an orangatangette mere inches away from where a group of mexican toddlers were pressing their faces up against the glass. A tribute then to "the old man of the woods".

They had some tapirs and that too. If you like that sort of thing.

While I understand that gate reciepts are going to be down "in the current economic climate" and that the cost of zoos-worth of bananas and horse tranquilisers must have skyrocketed recent in recent months I still though some of the cost cutting measures were a bit pathetic.

Clearly a painting:

I can see the elastic:

I could go to ANY WEDDING and see this:

Not even coloured in:

Pug Count 10, 11, 12 & 13

Pug #10: Tiny fawn puppy resting in owner's lap outside an Asian fusion restaurant, San Diego. His eyes were pointing in opposite directions.

Pug #11: Stocky fawn snarler yapping it up at the door of a pizza joint. Thick, grooved "neck ruff" and a playful demeanour merited pepperoni. Red collar.

Pug #12: Fawn, outside the San Diego museum of Modern art. A wise head on young shoulders or, more accurately, a wizened head on slightly less wizened shoulders. Poor dentistry.

Pug #13: Black, smartly trotting through downtown San Diego. Difficult to determine anything other than a purposeful swagger and "full" build due to poor light conditions.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

Daddy or Chips?

Blatantly nuggets lad.

Readers Poll!

Which of these flavours of disappointment is more inherently pathetic:

a) the disappointment of searching through a hotel's cable TV channels while in bed with your sleeping wife and discovering the the rudest thing on is "Porkys". And then flicking back and forth between that and the food network until the shower scene comes on.


b) the disappointment of discovering that the prescription medicine you found on the floor in an airport bar is an antacid.

You, the pubic, decide! Please send your answers carved on a bullet to: Keith Floyd's Gall Bladder plc, c/o Keith Floyd, Heaven.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Normal Food and Drink at San Francisco Airport

Your options are either a sandwich named after a Strong Woman.

Or hamburger / hot dog curry:

Quite what Frieda Kahlo has to do with coronation chicken is slightly beyond me but it certainly looks more appealing than the Dr Jane Goodall. I wouldn't give that to a chimpanzee, principally because they prefer Space Raiders and cans of Lilt (thanks Dr H Purser for this piece of research). And who knew Georgia O'Keefe thought you could put roast beef AND turkey on the same sandwich?

Monday, 26 October 2009


Oh man, Steven is going to go crackers when he sees the botch-job the muralist made of his portrait.

Sunday, 25 October 2009

It's here!

It's salty! it's good for hangovers! It's the juice left over at the bottom of Saurkraut!

Today's flavour Smoked Jalepano!

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Not dead

Just got back from a 1,630 mile round trip to buy some hunting slippers ($12, Walmart, locations throughout the US).

Lucky my legs are sticking out of the top or you wouldn't be able to see them, eh readers?

Pug Count 9.

Pug #9: Fawn, very old. Appealling "button eyes" frame a faded white muzzle. Too old/fat to maintain locomotion. Carried by balding owner.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

Oversharing at Harbin

Today I resumed tanning my buttocks. Kate and I slept out under the stars last night on the sundeck here. This morning I got up to get us a cup of coffee.

In my absence Kate asked one of our fellow deck sleepers whether he had got wet in the night from the heavy dew. He replied that:

*He had not slept well
*He had come up with a girl who was not over her ex
*This was a mistake as she wouldn't stop talking about him all night
*Nonetheless things "nearly happened" with her a few times in the night
*However nothing did happpen
*This made him frustrated
*He respects boundries because he's really into BDSM. However these boundaries had not been clearly communicated
*But he should have known better because this girl is "vanilla"
*And he, by contrast, is polygamous
*She wants a husband and a baby

At this point I returned with the coffees. Not bad going there, Mr Oversharing BDSM Polygamous Man, not bad going at all.

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Coastal Oregon

I took Kate up the Harris Beach. It was very pretty.

"The Trees of Mystery". Where is Kate hiding?

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

I'm sorry madam, but I believe I served with your brother in the war

Perhaps I am mistaken.

Pug Count 8.

Pug #8: Fawn, simply enormous, entering rear of blue mini-van at The Devil's Punchbowl National Park, Oregon. Frankly, I cannot exaggerate how big this guy was.

Saturday, 17 October 2009


We stayed in Portland for three days! It is pretty cool there: rainy, hip, good beer. Also they have HAM:

And rare Beatles records:

For the record this is a "second state" copy of Yesterday and Today which means that the image you see as the cover was pasted over the recalled original cover:

The best thing about Portland (apart from how photogenic it was) was our host, Mr Jorg Donde, who showed us A Good Time and was exchellent company.

Say Bauhaus!

On the strength of our intial discussions you can expect to see the following monographs published next year in a handsome folio edition:

A treatise on the inadvisability of drinking Everclear (Donde, J)
Concerning the attractiveness of the bass player from the Pogues (1983-1986) (Donde, J; Turner, J)
Race, gender and barriers to entry: strip club policy and pricing in Portland 2004-2009 (Donde, J)
Bitter harvest: a study of disproportionate hangovers (Donde, J; Turner, J)
The Bloomsbury Set: a collection of opinions and facts (Donde, J; Turner J)
Pondering a Jewish Ireland (Donde, J; Turner, J).

More titles to follow.

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Pant's Grass, Oregon

Grant's Pass has got a big statue of a Caveman next to the I5 motorway.

It was errected in 1971 by the Oregon Cavemen a bunch of dudes who, when they felt the time was appropriate, would dress up in fur loincloths and ride around on a parade car with a big cage on it. If they saw any girls they liked they would throw them in the cage, take them to the caves outside town and party like it was 1999BC. I don't think they're allowed to do this any more for health and safety reasons. And, you know, women's lib and that.

In fact some residents think that the caveman projects a rather backwards "redneck" image for the town and would have it removed: indeed in 2004 it was badly damaged in an arson attack. I like to think that the rebuilt statue pleases all parties: the removal of the cavewoman-being-dragged-by-her-hair from the statue's right hand could have left the monument looking imbalanced or incomplete but the brave decision of the restoration committe to replace the existing 8 foot errect penis with a simple loincloth ensures that the statue strikes a fine balace both aesthetically and politically. Bravo.

There is also a shop selling slightly too small T-Shirts! These are the ones I didn't buy.

No ODB shirts. I told the guy behind the counter that I saw a guy wearing one in an off licence in London shortly after Big Baby Jesus went to meet Big Daddy Jesus which featured a white print of this image on baby blue hoody w/ real gold teeth. When I told the guy wearing it that I liked it he just replied "He did what he liked, dinee?". So true. So very true.

The guy in the shop proceeded to describe this image to me in some detail, explaining that he had seen it on a shirt in New York.

We agreed that that sounded pretty good.

Generally there is quite a lot of wierd stuff in Grant's Pass.

Also I bought a gun shirt from a charity shop.

Guy in a bar told me what it was (I thought it just had snappy suede patches) shortly before I told him of my belief that if America hadn't joined WWII we'd all be speaking Portugese now. And then an early night...

Grant's Pass

We broke our journey to Portland at Grant's Pass, Oregon. We were only supposed to stay one night but we met these people:

We invented a drink ("Ride the Lightening": half Guinness half Longhammer IPA).

We got taken where the local barstaff go when their shifts are over. There were shots, there was a lock in, there was a rendition of "Mind Games" (me) and a press up competition (Kate). We were invited to sign the wall.

The next day we chose not to drive to Portland but instead to stay and get a deeper understanding of what makes Grant's Pass tick (me) and lie in bed begging to die (Kate).

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Burgers for the road #3: Jack in the Box, Mount Shasta, CA

For sir: Sourdough Steak melt ("Marinated steak, American, Swiss-style and real Cheddar cheeses, grilled onions and Peppercorn Mayo sauce on toasted sourdough bread"). Not what I asked for, but that which I was given. This was like a steak sandwich served at 3:15pm in a pub near a large roundabout A-road somewhere in England. The pub has a strong smell of vinegar and complete collection of Heinz sauce sachets on each dirty table. The only other customers are three middle aged builders drinking pints of Fosters one of whom occasionally gets up to play the "Only Fools and Horses" fruit machine. There is an excess of mayonaisse and the meat is of very poor quality.
For madame: Sourdough Jack ("Beef patty topped with bacon, tomato, Swiss-style cheese, Mayo-Onion sauce, and ketchup on toasted sourdough bread"). It is ironic that the bread on this sandwich is shaped like a heart because it hates you. It particularly hates your digestive system (short term) and your cardio-vascular system (long term). Nonetheless, better than the steak melt.

Attempt to salvage something from visit: 2 x "Big Cheeseburger": This tasted like a burger you would get in a roller rink. No vegetable content, not even a pickle.

Fries: 1 x regular, 1 x curly. Passable.
To drink: root beer.

To put a tin lid on the trip, the Australian Hat shop ("Over 2000 Hats!") next door had gone bust. It's the economy stupid! Or the hats. Hard to call really.

Due to the extreme unpleasantness of this meal this may be the last entry in the "Burgers for the road series". Coming soon: hummus and celery: on the road again!

Addendum: Addendum: I heard in the changing rooms at Harbin Hot springs that Mount Shasta is the earth's crown chakra. It seemed a lot more like prostate chakra to me.