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Monday, 16 January 2017

Liturgy for Blue Monday

Hymn: Grey Day

Archdruid: All the Celebs are dead, and the skies are gray.

All: California dreamin' on such a winter's day.

Archdruid: I'd be scared of Trump, if I were in L.A.

All: Yeah, it's not much fun over there either.

Hymn: Rainy night in Georgia

Archdruid: And now, in a moment of silence, let us untangle our earphone cables.

All may untangle their cables. iPhone users may look smug until they realise they don't remember where they've left their buds.

All: Oh wow, how few are my assets. The credit companies gnash their teeth at me. The rain it raineth every day. And it's three months till the next bank holiday. Let us sit on the floor and sing sad songs.

Archdruid: I wouldn't in this weather. You'll add a case of the Farmer's to your woes.

Hymn: Blue Monday

Archdruid: Trump's in the White House. Britain's in the red. It's raining through the fog. But on this Bluest of Blue Mondays, let's remember one happy thing.

All: At least we don't use Southern Rail.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

The Ground Will Produce Thorns and Weeds for You

Mixed news on the Doily Shed.

Marston Moretaine was out on gardening detail today, and given the job of clearing the brambles that had grown over the shed over the last couple of years.  I mean, it was a proper state - blackberries miles up in the air.

So Marston's reckoning if he takes it on with his gloved hands and loppers, it's gonna hurt. But he don't want to use herbicides as he's heard how bad they are for the wildlife.

So yeah. Petrol. Brilliant.

On the bright side, that's a load of souvenir "Euro 96" Doilies that I've not been able to mark down for two decades. Finally I can make an insurance claim. I've checked the policy and the "gross stupidity" clause is definitely in there confirming we're in the clear.

Also the burnt-out brick has a certain charm.  I think I might claim it's the remains of a Beaker Temple, destroyed by the evil Celts. Should be worth a few extra pilgrims in years to come.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Situations Vacant: Parish of St Paradigm's

The parish of St Paradigm's is looking for a new priest.

We are a vibrant, diverse parish committed to inclusiveness. Over the last ten years, attendance has increased steadily, and we meet our parish share every year, with enough money left over to put some towards good causes.
Has it ever occurred to you the tower would be better at the other end?

Could you be our ideal priest? You will be committed to a state of constant change and reorganisation. You will realise that, whatever we are doing, it needs improvement. By changing all the committee structures, introducing a new form of leadership group and swapping the house groups around, you will make things slightly different to how they are now.

You will start slowly, by changing the way you face during communion. We won't  understand why, but we'll leave you to it. You will replace the music group (introduced 5 years ago) with an organist and choir because it's more respectful than the old happy-clappy ways of doing things. Probably the same organist that was sacked 5 years ago,

After two years or so you will realise that what we really need is a building project.  This will be the case whether there is anything needing changing or not. You will commit the church's energy into replacing the church kitchen with a new set of accessible toilets.  And replacing the accessible toilets with a meeting room. And replacing the current meeting room with a new kitchen.

When you leave after five years you will be convinced you have radically changed the parish. Just like our last vicar was.

Friday, 13 January 2017

Tonight We're Gonna Party Like It's 1983

Can't disclose too much yet. But we've got three Labour MPs applied for our vacancy for "Head of Tea Lights."

If you think your job prospects are better in a futile role in an imaginary religious community than being a moderate Labour MP.... you're probably right.

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Praying for Parking Spaces

Went over to Kingston Tescos, as you do. Gin supplies getting dangerously low after Xmas.

The car park was really busy. Not a parking space to be seen. But I'd heard of people praying for parking spaces so thought I'd give it a go.

Sure enough - right up the front-  as near as you can get to the walkthrough to the little shops as you can get with a standard space.

If I'd not ridden over on my Pashley cycle it would have been really handy. Still, it seems the concept works.

Still I'm worried now. If my prayers brought those unneeded spaces, is there currently a Pentecostal in Michigan circling a Wal-Mart in their pickup, wondering why there's no spaces? Balance must be maintained.

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Beaker Quire to Play at Trump Inauguration?

Well the Beaker Quire don't know what to do.

The invitation to perform at President Trump's inauguration came completely out of the blue. And I'm sure it was on merit, and not because the four million more accomplished bands in the Western hemisphere all said no.

But should they play? I pointed out they'd be playing for an irrational power-crazed demagogue and they said what's new?

But still. The current line up is acoustic bass, violin, guitar and pan pipes. If Trump thinks they're Mexicans he might build a wall round them

Monday, 9 January 2017

Corbyn Cake

Sure, Jeremy Corbyn's sudden claim that we're better out of the EU and managing immigration looks like a desperate attempt to stop Labour voters defecting to UKIP.

And his suggestion we could do that while maintaining access to the Single Market suggests he wants to have his fromage and eat it.

But it was the lack of a comma in the Guardian article scared me most.

"After comparing the prime minister’s refusal to offer MPs a vote on the final Brexit deal to the behaviour of Henry VIII in a Guardian interview, Corbyn will say: “Not since the second world war has Britain’s ruling elite so recklessly put the country in such an exposed position without a plan.”"

I have no idea when Henry VIII did this Guardian interview. But I'd like to know why they didn't question him on his attitude to women's rights.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

The Ubiquitous White Posh Boy Club

Can't believe how that happened.  We've just announced our panel for tomorrow's seminar: "Faith vs Science - is Genesis 1 a Pseudo-Scientific Treatise or, as is Bleedin' Obvious, a Piece of Poetic Theology?"

Well, we've got Charlii and I. Her degrees in theology and astrophysics should be pretty useful. And Hnaef's done Anglo-Saxon, so that's.... well, he's got a degree, that's what I'm saying. But I explicitly said that Hnaef completed the upper-middle-class-white-male quota. So how on earth did Nigel Farage and Benedict Cumberbatch get on the panel?

The Thoughts and Prayers Initiative

Once again there has been a mass shooting in the United States. And President-Elect Trump, like many before him, has offered up "thoughts and prayers."

Problem is, as so often before, the same people are dead and injured as they were before the thoughts and prayers were offered. Something clearly isn't working in the "Thoughts and Prayers" model. But what?

Clearly, given the number of powerful people using them, it's not likely that thoughts and prayers don't work. So our theory is, it's in the timing. Sending thoughts and prayers after the event must be too late. You need to get them in early.

This is why we're introducing the Proactive Thoughts and Prayers Initiative. Instead of using rapid-reaction thoughts and prayers we will be going through all the places in the States where an outrage could occur, and offering thoughts and prayers in advance.

Clearly this approach is speculative. But if this don't work the United States might have to consider gun control. And let's face it - that would be impractical and ridiculous.