Monthly Archives: July 2014

10 Reasons Why I Don’t Want to Live on this Planet Anymore


*shakes head*

Look at what you’ve become.

Darwin, don’t you look so smug, you have a lot to answer for. If only you hadn’t invented evolution, we’d still be cosily swimming around in a warm, primordial soup. Sure, there’d be no Game of Thrones, but life would be simpler.

Seriously, this planet is messed up in so many ways, no wonder the aliens deliberately fly straight past us.

Here are 10 reasons why I don’t want to live on this planet anymore:



And the overtly religious. I will intersperse my thoughts on the matter, with some topical quotes from those who can say it better than me.

I am a staunch atheist. I’m not agnostic. I don’t question whether god exists. I am adamant he/she/it does not. The only deity I subscribe to, is on Twitter @TheTweetOfGod. I would go so far as to say I worship him.

“We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.” ― Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion

Surely everyone knows deep down in their heart of hearts that there is no god. Don’t get me wrong, it’s an attractive proposition. Believe in “Me” and live forever. I get it. I concede that many “religious” folk are only believers because they wish to hedge their bets for an afterlife. It’s like betting your life savings on Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards to win a Winter Olympic Gold Medal in the Ski Jumping. You know it won’t happen, but if it did, the payoff would be frickin’ sweet.

“It’s a strange myth that atheists have nothing to live for. It’s the opposite. We have nothing to die for. We have everything to live for.” ― Ricky Gervais

God is a man manifested tool to gain control through fear. Religion it’s mans enforcer.” – Jodi Wieland

But the fallacy that this world was designed with us at its core is human egocentrism at its absolute worst.

“This is rather as if you imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, ‘This is an interesting world I find myself in — an interesting hole I find myself in — fits me rather neatly, doesn’t it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!’ This is such a powerful idea that as the sun rises in the sky and the air heats up and as, gradually, the puddle gets smaller and smaller, frantically hanging on to the notion that everything’s going to be alright, because this world was meant to have him in it, was built to have him in it; so the moment he disappears catches him rather by surprise. I think this may be something we need to be on the watch out for.” ― Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt

All religion is a work of fiction. It was written by humans, for humans. More specifically, it was mostly written by men, for men. Women should shun religion – it does not treat them well – and any man with an ounce of compassion and empathy should shun it too. It is antiquated. It is self-serving. It is bigoted. It is ignorant. It is misogynistic. It is homophobic. It is racist. It is infanticidal. It is genocidal. It is dangerous. Well, that’s if you take it too seriously. And sadly, too many do.

“One must state it plainly. Religion comes from the period of human prehistory where nobody had the smallest idea what was going on. It comes from the bawling and fearful infancy of our species, and is a babyish attempt to meet our inescapable demand for knowledge, as well as for comfort, reassurance and other infantile needs. Today the least educated of my children knows much more about the natural order than any of the founders of religion, and one would like to think that this is why they seem so uninterested in sending fellow humans to hell.” ― Christopher Hitchens, God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything (*snipped for brevity)

I predict religion will be all but gone in a few centuries, although I wish it were sooner.   When I awake from my cryogenic chamber in around the year 2300, I will celebrate religion’s demise with a strategically cellared glass of Sine Qua Non – Queen of Spades, or some 1990 Penfolds Grange.

 Anyway, I could belt on about my hatred of religion all day, so I’ll sum up my thoughts with one last Ricky Gervais quote.

“Suggesting I hate people with religion, because I hate religion, is like saying I hate people with cancer, because I hate cancer” – Ricky Gervais.

No, I hate people for other reasons. <see below>



And that someone like Ke$ha can become a “star”. That someone can use a dollar sign (although I hear she’s recently dropped the $ while in rehab) in their name and get away with it, is one thing. But for this talentless hack to be successful is another. I’d rather listen to Stephen Hawking sing, than listen to her over-autotuned vocal diarrhoea. Listening to her makes me want to kick kittens. And I quite like kittens.

I remember Dave Grohl’s 2012 Grammy Speech, and nodding in agreement:

“To me this award means a lot because it shows that the human element of music is what’s important. Singing into a microphone and learning to play an instrument and learning to do your craft, that’s the most important thing for people to do… It’s not about being perfect, it’s not about sounding absolutely correct, it’s not about what goes on in a computer. It’s about what goes on in here [your heart] and what goes on in here [your head].” – Dave Grohl Acceptance Speech – Grammy for Best Rock Performance

At the risk of contradicting the above, Dave Grohl is a god.



a)     That they are considered food, and

b)     That they are sold in such vast quantities.

Supply and demand. That is the saddest part of this observation. Seriously people, you really should choose not to eat these over-processed, tenuously-named, deep-fried globs of animal by-products and mystery fillers.

Surely the name “nugget” gives it away? Let’s apply the test of reasonableness here.

Chicken wings? Chickens have wings – therefore that is an acceptable product.

Chicken breast fillet? Chickens have breasts – again, acceptable.

Chicken nuggets? Well, arguably it’s the roosters that have the nuggets (nudge, nudge, if you know what I mean)? So which part of the chicken do they come from? #bestnottoask

Disturbingly, watch this video of UK Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver, and how he fails to shock kids in the US in relation to processed foods like nuggets:



Yes, that means you! No, not you, loyal reader, the person behind you. But yeah, sometimes you.

Now I must preface this point. I quite like a vast number of individuals. It is people I despise.

On the whole, people are the worst. Seriously, the worst. You’ve met them, so you know what I mean.

People are everywhere too. At coffee shops. At airports. Heck, they’re walking on the pavement beside a street near you!

This is generally how I feel when dealing with “people”.


Slow walking, loud phone talking, personal space invading, uncovered sneezing, slow-driving, telemarketing, double-dipping motherfuckers.

I usually hide behind sarcasm because telling people to fuck off is considered rude according to most social conventions. Although I do think it, really, really hard.

Seriously, I think I’ll enjoy the aftermath of the zombie apocalypse. I think a healthy cull is in order, just to sort the wheat from the chaff.

So stay wheaty friends…



There, somebody had to say it.

Yes, shirtless horse-back riding, assault rifle totin’, former KGB Intelligence Officer, Vladimir “Pootie-Poot” Putin.

Side Note: Pootie-Poot is the only vaguely clever thing that ever came out of George Dubya Bush’s mouth, if the rumour that he invented it is true.

US Vice President Joe Biden once claimed that he came face to face with Vladimir Putin during a visit to Moscow in 2011 and told him: ‘Mr. Prime Minister, I’m looking into your eyes, and I don’t think you have a soul’.

‘And he looked back at me, and he smiled, and he said, “We understand one another.”’

That is the man we’re talking about here.

Apparently he is undefeated at judo.

As if you’d ever beat him at judo, no matter how fucking good you were.


“Yeah, you beat me fair and square, Pootie-Poot”.

“What did you call me?!”

Seriously, it’s as clever as beating Kim Jong Un at foosball. You just don’t do it, if you want to live on this planet anymore.

Putin is a badass. And he is virtually untouchable. And no amount of international scrutiny is going to change that.

It is no surprise that many perceive Putin is tacitly to blame for the horrific shoot-down of the Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine.

“Sure, I give pro-Russian separatists BUK missile launcher. How I know they shoot something from sky? Is like giving hand grenade to baby. I am shocked as you, that something terrible result”.

He is a thug. He is a bully. And frankly, he terrifies me.

*If I suddenly go missing, you know why.



Even if they are perfect for each other…




What have we become, that these abominations exist?

Surely no-one buys abdominal machines any more (or any other home “fitness” device)?

Or a chamois, creatively called the “ShamWow”?

They always “solve” ridiculous “problems”, that you never knew existed. Life, according to infomercials, is hard. Ridiculously hard, as the following will attest.

Does anyone buy this?

Clearly, they must, because they keep making infomercials trying to sell it.

The only problem I have, is having to replace the remote control every time I hurl it at the television when an infomercial comes on. I’m onto my 6th this week.



Maybe infomercials aren’t so bad after all…

<Gaz sees dollar signs, cornering on the Replacement Remote Control infomercial circuit>

It’s a self-fulfilling enterprise. Think about it.

Entrepreneurs gonna entrepreneurialise!



“So You Think Your Idol Voice has Talent Factor!”

Every contestant has a sob story. And this performance is their breakthrough moment. So brave. You’re singing a fucking Katy Perry cover. Get over yourself.

A mark of just how valid these “talent” shows are, in the success rate of the winners. One can name less than a handful of performers who have had commercial success since being contestants. Susan Boyle. One Direction. Kelly Clarkson.   Uhm, Clay Whatsit?
These “talent” shows are just a money making vehicle for the television channels. And Simon Cowell. Yet still he hasn’t forked out for breast reduction surgery.



This one shits me to tears.

It is barbaric. It is torturous. It has a high death rate. And it is wholly unnecessary.

The livestock are packed in like sardines. They rarely have the space to lie down, and if they do, it is in their own filth. And each voyage takes up to a month.

And the torment doesn’t stop at the other end, where many animals are slaughtered, tortured and butchered inhumanely

So why is it done? Why aren’t they killed humanely, and then boxed and chilled?

Simply because certain countries like to butcher their beasts in a certain, religiously decreed way. See Point 1 for more information.

Sadly, once the animals leave the confines of the ship, there is little to no control over what happens next. Dear reader, I will spare you the distress of providing links to these atrocities. Google them at your peril.

Sorry if this point contains no humour. There is nothing funny about this.

Stop live export. Fuck the zealots.



This is self-explanatory.


The Grapes of Wrath

BrO_l5NCUAANy-yOkay, okay, so I’m a little bit of a wine snob.

In the same way that Miranda Kerr is a “little bit” of alright.

I constantly travel the world, among elite circles, so I’ve been fortunate to try my hand at many (arguably far too many) a tipple here and there.

That being said, while I am an ultra-mega wine snob, I don’t belittle those who aren’t (well, those who know me will know that I could be stretching a truth a little). For those who aren’t fine wine connoisseurs, I’ve put together some tips for defusing some potentially awkward situations.

Don’t Say “Whatever”

It is great to try new things, but not to be blasé about it. It is better to have an opinion, and appear confident, than to have no opinion at all. When someone asks you what kind of wine you would like, at the very least, pick a colour.

If that is too much pressure, simply turn it back on the asker with “what would you suggest?”

You’ll likely get to try something you’ve never tried before. And if you like it, keep it in the memory bank for next time. Baby steps, my little wine noob. Baby steps.

Don’t Guess, if guessing is all you have

If someone at a wine tasting or cellar door asks you “Can you guess what grape this is?” – tread carefully.   And whatever you do, do not say “Bordeaux”? Bordeaux is a prolific (and important) wine region in Southwest France, not a grape variety.

And if you don’t know the colour of a wine based upon the grape name, do not partake in this guessing game at all. You’ll be a 50/50 chance of only getting the colour right.   A Pinot Noir is red. A Pino Grigio is white. It’s a slippery slope for the uninitiated.

I find it is often best to display a very slight, knowing smile and say nothing at all, waiting for others to play along first.

If put to task, I would then aim to distract. After ostentatiously sniffing and tasting the wine, simply say “ambitious, but never haughty.” If anyone is brave enough to ask you what you mean, glare at them with withering disdain and say nothing further. If pressed, utter a small “hurrumph” and start muttering about pigeons. Better to appear senile, than inept.

Don’t ramble

When someone asks what you think about a particular wine, quite often they are expecting a flowery answer, and one which really cannot be provided without extensive knowledge and experience.

Play it safe, and make deliberately vague, generic comments that you can easily get away with, like “robust”, or “smooth” or simply “good structure”. If all else fails, just say “I don’t know how to describe it, but I like it”.

Do not, under any circumstance, start suggesting which side of the slope the grapes were grown upon, or you’ll look like a pompous git.

Often times, it is simply more fun, and more endearing to your fellow guests, to make light, by peering at your wine with a raised eyebrow, and saying something like “hmmm… it does have an oaky afterbirth”.

Don’t be Grape-cist

Don’t be that guy who says “I only drink Red”. Or “I only drink White”. This is an immediate red flag to any discerning wine buff who is looking to sniff out a novice. Instead, if you truly do hate red wine, come up with a good reason, like “I just had my teeth whitened, so I’d prefer to stick with white tonight”.  Realise also that no two reds or whites are alike. It’s time to put those long-held grudges behind you and pick up a bottle of “the other colour” again. You will likely be pleasantly surprised.

Don’t sniff the cork

Many are aware of the phenomena known as “corking”. In a nutshell, “corked wine” is one that has developed a flaw caused by contamination from a chemical compound contained in cork called 2,4,6-Trichloroanisole, or TCA for short. This is also known as cork taint. The reality is, a cork can be tainted, without the wine being tainted. If the wine is tainted, the wine itself will smell tainted. I assure you, you do not want to reject, or discard an expensive, vintage bottle of plonk based upon a cork sniff. And if you sniff a metal twist-off cap (or a cork-free cork), you are guaranteed to look like a twat.

Don’t overdo it

When a sommelier or a waiter proffers you a small sample before pouring for others, adhere to the ritual, but don’t overdo it. Let me cut to the chase here. The purpose of this ritual is not to determine whether you like the wine, it is solely to determine whether it has been tainted (see above). Do not ask to sniff the cork (see above). Do not over-swirl.   Do not over-sniff. And do not even taste it unless you suspect it might be tainted and you need to know for sure. And you will know then, I assure you.

Instead simply give the wine a quick couple of swirls. Have a quick sniff. And give the sommelier a brief, casual nod. This should take no more than 5 seconds.

Do not lean back in your chair, and make a big song and dance over it, swirling and sniffing and sampling, or else the sommelier will know you are full of shit – and the crafty ones may even seek to trip you up on something else later. It’s not worth the risk. Again, if it is a twist cap, just wave away the entire exercise, and simply tell them to “pour away, my good fellow/lady”.

Don’t imitate Hannibal Lecter every time Chianti is ordered

Maybe one day it will be hip and retro to throw out a Lecter impression. This is not yet that time. Right now, it is still a little bit try-hard. Wait until Silence of the Lambs is a true cult classic. Safe to safe that will be in around 2031. Make a note in your calendar for the year 2025 to start cellaring a nice Chianti Classico in anticipation.  Chances are no-one in the room will get the joke, but oh how you’ll giggle to yourself.

*Note, it is however perfectly acceptable to throw the quote out, whenever you are offered Fava Beans…

Don’t say you prefer a “dry”’ red

Why? I know that you mean to say that you prefer a wine that is less sweet.   The problem is, almost all reds are dry, by design. That means that the sugar has been fermented into alcohol. The sensation of sweetness in red wine is caused by the presence of super-ripe fruit, which tricks your palate into thinking “sweet”. Instead, say that you prefer reds that are “less fruity in style”, like your good self.

The Sideways “Fucking Merlot” Caveat

Don’t hate on fucking Merlot because Paul Giamatti told you so in “Sideways”. Hate on fucking Merlot because it tastes like the fucking Merlot grape has drunk its own pee, after eating a bowl of asparagus soup, just before it was sent to the crusher. It is a varietal meant for blending, and blending only. So don’t go all “Sideways” because a wine contains a blend of Merlot.   But if it’s a straight up fucking Merlot, all gloves are off.

Don’t fear the wine list

They can be lengthy. They can (often) be written in foreign languages. But don’t let that hold you back.

If all else fails, ask your waiter for a recommendation, along the lines of “I’m having the duck, and my friend/spouse/bit-on-the-side is having the Mahi Mahi, what would you recommend to best accompany them?”

If all else fails, select the second or third least-expensive bottle in your grape of choice. But never say “I’ll have a bottle of your second cheapest wine, thanks!”, or you will have foregone all of your previous hard work.

Don’t get into Bubble Trouble

This is another slippery slope. Most wine noobs are at least aware that Champagne is not an arbitrary term for all sparkling wines. If you make this mistake in the presence of anyone who works in the beverage industry, you’ll likely get the age-old lecture that unless the bubbly was made in Champagne (a region in the Northeast of France), it ain’t Champers – it’s sparkling wine. Best to play it safe, and simply talk about the “bubbly” or the “sparkling”.

Dealing with the Arsehole Wine Snob

Aka, the Wine Snoot. A Wine Snoot tends to make the subject of wine appear to be more complicated, more difficult, and more mysterious than it needs to be. Granted, there is an awful lot that can be learned about wine, but the basics one needs to learn in order to improve their appreciation of wine really aren’t that difficult. Wine isn’t rocket science and no one needs to be made to feel stupid around wine by someone making it out to be more complicated than it really is.

All in all, good readers, drinking wine should be enjoyable. There are no firm and fast rules. Wine enjoyment is highly subjective. And it’s truly a personal experience.

So if some over-pompous tosspot starts ruining your experience, wait for them to describe a wine, smile and while shaking your head discouragingly say “no, no, no, that’s not what you’re tasting at all”. And then turn away, and never speak to him again.

And if all else fails, pilfer his car keys and flush them down the toilet.