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The Package

Look at me. I’m like a child on the morning of his birthday, waiting for the mailman to bring him a gift. No, it’s worse than that: I’m like a spoiled lapdog running to the window every ten seconds, waiting for his owner to come home. Every faint whiff of perfume that wafts through the slightly cracked window has him running around in circles near the front door.

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Read more  51Kt5ekM8cL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg
 

The Gospel According To BART ….part II

BART continues to be a source of amusement for the pic-and-caption team at The Bay Area Brit. I hope that you feel the same way.

The BART station agent’s financial woes are aired for everyone to see. However, if BART paid him more money maybe he would stay in his little booth the whole shift like he’s supposed to.

I keep seeing these ads on the BART platforms everywhere. I know when I’m scraping together the $2.75 to take BART in the morning, I often think to myself: “I should just donate my luxury yacht to some page 3 pin-up dressed like Donald Duck.” Really?

Speaking of ads: Why did the people that paid for the Judgment Day Warning posters pay to have their ads run through the end of July? Silly rapture-wanters.

This young man takes a heroin nap during the evening commute to San Francisco. He will wake up three hours later in Richmond and will have somehow lost his wallet, his ID, his sunglasses, and his Nikes.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen this happen, people.

A Female commuter regrets her decision to partake in “Take A Convict To Work Day” when he tells her that he’s never really known true love before…until now.

You know I just couldn’t resist

If you missed the first one, click below, and don’t be shy with a comment if you liked it, hated it, or are in one of the pictures and want your silly face blurred.

https://thebayareabrit.com/2011/03/07/the-gospel-according-to-bart/

The Illustrated Guide On How To Dine And Dash

***This particular blog has become extremely popular. It is satire, and should not be taken seriously. We do NOT condone Dining and Dashing.***

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“HOW TO DINE AND DASH” is now a short film. Just click on the link.

An Indian restaurant in London called Khan’s had so many issues with people running out without paying their bill that they only hired young, lean Indian waiters that could run the 100 meters in less than 11 seconds. There were usually 9 or 10 servers on the floor, all of them with leg muscles stretched and limbered up, ready to take off into the night to chase someone likely so full of curry they didn’t stand a chance of getting away. 

On at least three visits to Khan’s I saw someone try to Dine And Dash. It would usually start with some plates being dropped, followed by the sound of furniture being swept aside, and then frantic yelling (Probably Hindi for, “We’ve got a runner!”) then there would be a flurry of white shirts and Nikes sprinting out the front door in spicy hot pursuit of the Dine ‘n’ Dasher like they were running from the bulls in Pamplona.

They always caught the runner and dragged him back to the restaurant. The Dine ‘n’ Dasher always looked like he had been roughed up a bit in the skirmish, and the adrenaline-pumped waiters’ high-fived each other in victory as other diners applauded.

Embarrassing to say the least.

If only the Dine ’n’ Dasher had thought more carefully about his restaurant choice—unless of course he enjoyed the rush of being chased down and beaten by a swoop of young Indian men.

Here now is

“The Illustrated Guide On How To Dine-And-Dash”

1)    Location, Location, Location

The successful Dine ‘n’ Dasher chooses their restaurant carefully.

The restaurant MUST be busy, the more chaotic the better.

If the restaurant has more than one exit, this is a plus.

Often, restaurants inside hotels are prime choice because the restrooms are located in the lobby and not in the dining room, making escape easy.

The experienced Dine ‘n’ Dasher knows that choosing the right restaurant shouldn’t be based on the quality of the menu, but the likelihood of a successful escape.

Continue reading

Steaming Aphrodite

I recently bought a trunk at a flea market and was surprised to discover that it had a false bottom. Under the faux cover I discovered a diary written in 1909 by a man named Dr. York Van Landingham. Here is a page:

July 17th 1909

She was from Mother Russia and her name was Svetlana Minsky. She spoke perfect English in an accent that one could not detect as foreign. Svetlana had a penchant for bawdy revelry, and used the kind of language which might make an unassuming male turn burgundy from blushing. I had sought her company while we were aboard a steamboat vessel bound for the shores of North Africa. I was wary of her however, as earlier, I had witnessed her bilk three men of their life savings with a fifth, and yes even a sixth King up her lace sleeve.

In the event that her conniving was discovered, she kept a knife in her garter. Upon discovering the weapon one sultry night in Constantinople I decided to nickname her “Svetlana Switchblade.” As I recall, she only stabbed me with it once, and I remain convinced that it was somewhat accidental, but the piercing occurred after I confessed that I relinquished one of her diamond earrings to get out of a tight spot in Bombay.

The night we met, I caught up with her on the deck as she stared out across the Atlantic Ocean at the purple dusk, her winnings tucked into the folds of her undergarments. She told me she’d first noticed me playing trumpet among the troupe of musicians that kept the passengers and crew entertained. It was someone else that she had seen, but I played along not wishing to disappoint her.

She told me she had been entrusted to discover if there were truths to the legend of the goddess Aphrodite and the potions so named after her. She had journeyed through Greece and was now headed to the barely reachable corners of the darkest continent. Entrusted by whom she never confirmed, but she had alluded to a man named Rasputin.

I knew nothing of Aphrodite and she asked me to join her in her cabin to discuss matters of amour. I hadn’t been invited to a woman’s quarters since my journey began and I lustily agreed. She asked if I had absinthe, and of course I did.

We sipped our pastis and made playful conversation. She pulled a patina box from the drawer and opened it. “This is dust from a rhinoceros’s horn,” she said, offering it to me.

     “And?” I said.

     “You snort it, like so.”

     “Madame, I have ingested many a foreign object in my time but nothing from a beast of such stature.”

“It’s an aphrodisiac.

 “An aphro what?”

“It’s named after the goddess,” she said. “If you take it you will likely want to consume me with desire.”

     “I have never heard of such a thing. Won’t I become ill?”

     “No. Legend says that you will become aroused. Try it.”

      “Hm, do you have any other aphrodisiacs, say something in a chewable form?”

       “Many men have died trying to discover what it is about this and other ingredients that turn us into savages.” She passed a leather-bound book under my nose that she had been writing in. I opened it somewhere near the beginning and read her words. I suddenly felt the urge to regurgitate my lunch.

      “What in the name of Satan’s hot tub?”

       “What did you read? Is it the tiger penis thing?”

        “Yes, of course it’s that!!”

        “That’s usually the reaction.”

         “People actually eat tiger’s penises?” I blurted. She nodded slowly. “I mean I’m adventurous in the kitchen, Svetlana, but there is one ingredient that doesn’t leap to mind when cooking and that is tiger penis. I mean, how does one even discover something like that? Oh, I know, why don’t I try tiger penis in my omelet this morning? But before I can do that it’s off to hunt and castrate a tiger…hope he doesn’t mind having his masculinity severed from him before he’s had his morning cup of tea. Maybe I can find other ways to use tiger penis, since I went to the trouble, maybe as an accompaniment to a cheese plate. Oh what have we got here then? Brie, Camembert, Stilton, Tiger penis…oh, yes, perfect, just fits right in there doesn’t it? Pass the salted crackers; this tiger penis is in need of a bed of crunchiness before I can consume it. Good god!”

        “What is it then that makes man want to consume the horn from a rhinoceros and the genitals of a jungle cat?” she asked with a perfectly straight face.

        “I couldn’t tell you, Svetlana, but if this catches on, these poor things are looking to go the way of the dodo and the unicorn. Oh no, do you think that’s what happened to those doomed creatures? Unicorn testicle flambé ? Dodo Eggs Benedict?”

       She calmed me with her smile and we drank long into the night. At some point she asked if I would be interested in joining her on her mission. I laughed. “As long as you don’t try to get me to snort pelican beak, drink panda bear urine, or inhale a mongoose’s fart. I’ll think upon it.”

      Hours later I awoke under my own bed with a headache the size of the earthquake that shook San Francisco. In my view was a half-eaten plate of oysters and my ears filled with sounds of an accordion melody skipping on the phonograph caught in a three second loop. Oh, Svetlana, I thought, I really must stop drinking that absinthe.

I crawled out from beneath the bed and sought the comfort of some woolen trousers so that I might get some fresh sea air and locate my mysterious Russian adventurer. Tomorrow night we are due to dock in Casablanca. I hope that there are no tigers in Morocco, the temptation might be too great an urge to resist.

Am I Paranoid Or Just Phobic?

I have been told by some of my friends and past and present loves that I can at times be…….paranoid. However, in the words of either Jesus or Kurt Cobain (I forget which) “Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t after you.”

And so, Mr Bay Area Brit, how does this paranoia manifest itself?

I’ll tell you.

Well one: There is the fear that I’m not getting the attention I crave. While some worry that people are talking about them behind their back. I worry that they’re NOT talking about me behind my back.

My paranoid fears are not unrealistic. I don’t worry about aliens taking over the Earth, as much as I don’t fear werewolves attacking me as I walk home by the park late at night. I don’t fear going to Hell because I don’t believe in God. My worries are everyday things like: If I leave the dishwasher running while I quickly go and check the mail will I come home to find it has broken and waterlogged the apartment?

When I’m waiting for a package to be delivered, I fear that the driver will not stop at my building unless he sees me staring out the window at the street waiting for him.

The reason I haven’t had Lasik eye surgery, is primarily due to my concern that my appointment would be at the exact same time a massive earthquake strikes the Bay Area as I wait in the doctor’s chair with Goldfinger’s death ray laser pointed at my eye socket.

I come from the school of thought that if something can go wrong, it will go wrong, and I will be the one to suffer more greatly than any of you.

I also have phobias, and not the usual ones that normal people have. For example, take “arachnophobia.” The fear of spiders.

Much like Robert Smith, my version of arachnophobia isn’t just a general fear of spiders; it’s specific. My phobia is that a pregnant female spider is going to crawl into my ear as I sleep and hatch a hundred little spiders that don’t know where the exit is, and so they burrow their way through my ear drum, which is of course the gateway to my brain. By morning I will be dead. My head literally eaten away from the inside out. Now that is a phobia you can sink your teeth into; it is also why I sleep with earplugs in my earholes and nuzzle up to a can of Raid at night…..just in case.

There are phobias for everything. Here are some illustrated ones for your viewing pleasure.

That’sAllFolks!!!!!****************************

Feel free to leave a comment because that’s the only way I’m going to know that you’re watching my every move. And you are….aren’t you?

I Love My Cat!

I love my cat, I really do, but I think she’s trying to drive me insane.

If it’s not by pouncing on my bed at 6 a.m. and slowly inching up my chest and nuzzling up to my face, its by placing herself on the edge of the bed and allowing her body to go limp and fall off. As she drifts down and off of the bed the sheet is pulled off of me and then there is a gentle thud on the carpet as she lands. This is followed (of course) by the attempted noisy and clumsy extrication from said sheet before she jumps up on the bed and does the whole thing all over again.

Is this the face of a monster?

This often all happens a mere few hours after I’ve gone to bed. But what am I to do? I tried to lock her out of the bedroom but she attacks the door trying to get back in so she can wake me up. It’s not even a food thing. This morning she was fed and I tried to sleep on after…but no. No, no, no, no, Mr. Bay Area Brit, you cannot sleep I need you up and alert and ready to play with me. What do you expect? She’s not even a year-old.

I love my cat…but she’s driving me cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs.

She wants to get me up, and I think I understand why. She has no idea what my life is like outside the walls of the apartment. Maybe when I leave to go to the store, she thinks I’m just outside the door the whole time teasing her…which would explain why she is waiting for me just eight inches from the front door when I return.

I often think of a Freaky Friday situation where I switch lives with my cat for a day. Just so she can see how much more complicated my life is compared to hers and why I NEED my sleep. So yeah, what would it be like to be my cat for one day? Lounging around on the bed purring and receiving all kinds of love and affection. Does that sound like hard work? If only she could meow the words “Peel me a grape.” 

Plaaaaaaaaay with meeeeeeee

Maybe what she really craves is something more than the life of a domestic cat. Perhaps inside that mischievous mind there is a complex brain at work. Like humans, some cats are smarter than others. Maybe my cat is the most intelligent feline in the world. Maybe if we switched for a Freaky Friday, she’d get something great accomplished with my life. Maybe on Saturday I’d discover that I actually have money in my bank account, and that overnight people have come to think of me as a sharp, balanced, poised under pressure kind of guy. Or maybe I would just suddenly become addicted to being tickled under my chin and having my tummy rubbed.

Sometimes the temptation to wake her up is overwhelming.

The animation by Simon Tofield is hilarious, and is a fair reflection of how it goes down.

 

Feel free to leave a comment or email me at TheBayAreaBrit@gmail.com

 

The Gospel According To BART

For those not familiar with BART, it is the train system that links San Francisco to Oakland and to other more forgettable places in the Bay Area. This is what it’s like:

Whatever you do with your graffiti, don’t smoke, drink, or eat it while on BART

Also known as Commandment #6 as told in “The Gospel According To BART.”

However, federal law does NOT require that the seats actually be clean enough to sit on.

“Hey, hippy, why does no one want to sit anywhere near you? Are you the reason that the seats on BART are dirty?”

Sometimes while I’m on BART I play, “Hey, Pal, Are You Dead Or Just Sleeping?”

BART isn’t just for homeless people trying to stay out of the rain. Celebrity impersonator sightings are frequent. Depending on which side of the train this John Goodman wannabe sits, there’s a good chance that the train will be leaning to that side.

Clearly this couple thought that they were on The Orient Express. I love this guy’s cane.

This from the BART website: We are asking you to help keep BART safe for everyone by reporting unattended packages or suspicious behavior. What do we mean by suspicious behavior? Here are some examples: 1) Acting nervous, sweating inappropriately. 2) Taking pictures or videotaping in areas of no interest to the general public. 3) Attempting to get into an area that is off limits. 4) Leaving a package, backpack or briefcase and hurrying away from the area………………..The Bay Area Brit: guilty as charged…………Now if you don’t mind, I’m going to eat and drink and maybe smoke some graffiti.

You Eat What???

 

 

It’s hard to defend being British sometimes.

An orgy of Bangers ‘n’ Mash. I mean look at this for God’s sake. If it didn’t already look like it was being made love to by an army of Gurkhas wouldn’t you be all over that?

It’s a sausage in pastry. It’s the perfect accompaniment to warm beer. It’s packaged like a chocolate candy bar because it’s never too soon to get the kids on to the Sausage Rolls.

Black Pudding…made with blood. Delicious, right? And the best part is, it’s not even a pudding.

Aunt Bessie knows what’s up. A little toad… and it’s in a hole. It’s irresistible…and just the way I like it… Oh, Aunt Bessie, you salacious tart, are you hitting on me?

Figgy Pudding: It’s what’s for Christmas. There is enough alcohol in this little bomb of fun to entice a rhino to make lewd suggestions to your grandmother. Can also be used as a weapon by dropping on your opponent from a short-to-medium height.

“Artificially Colored,” Mushy Peas…because peas aren’t quite green enough.

Penicillin Sauce comes in a separate can with prescription.

The Bay Area Brit Is One-Year Old…

…which would likely explain the maturity level of some of the jokes and cartoons.

Valentine’s Day is the The Bay Area Brit’s one-year anniversary. And what better way to celebrate by giving fake awards to Brits who have popped up on the American radar in the last year.

Award For The Funniest And Meanest Way To Get Back At Your Celebrity Wife 

"I'd like to thank my iPhone and Twitter for this award."

Russell Brand exposed his wife, Katy Perry to the TwitWorld sans makeup. Normally this would be a “so-what” situation: a woman without makeup–big deal. I like to see it as the first layer of exposure. Next comes Brand’s homemade audio files of her singing off key in the shower and then of course the inevitable porno tape. Who knows what started it? Perhaps a fight over whose maid should do the dishes, or maybe there was a verbal joust regarding whose 15 minutes would be up first. Either way, we here at the Bay Area Brit commend Mr. Brand’s efforts to prevent boys aged 13-77 from lusting after his wife.

Monty Python: Funny. Jeremy Clarkson: Unfunny.

Award For Putting Your Foot In Your Mouth And Then Not Only Failing To Remove It, But Trying To Cram The Other Foot In There As Well.

Jeremy Clarkson is the host of a popular British TV show called “Top Gear.” On a recent episode, he referred to Mexicans as “lazy, feckless, flatulent oafs” and Mexican food as “refried vomit.” Understandably, Mexicans are angry at the comments, and Clarkson has failed to apologize; in fact he continued to make even more racist comments that he believes is “humour.” To make matters worse, he claims that, “the Mexicans have no sense of humour.” Which is kind of like me taking a crap on his floor and telling him that, “he’s only mad at me because he hates cleaning his carpet.”

We here at The Bay Area Brit think that Jeremy Clarkson’s the one lacking a sense of humor.

Award For Pissing Off Hollywood Celebrities By Making Fun Of Them 

No need to apologize for being funny, Ricky.

Ricky Gervais hosted the Golden Globes for the second year in a row. It’s refreshing to see an awards show host who is secure and comfortable enough to fearlessly make fun of the irritating pomposity that these affairs usually bring. I mean he’s drinking a beer at the podium for God’s sake. He skewered some easy targets but even went after the guy that signed his paycheck that night: the President of the Hollywood Foreign Press. One of his best lines made fun of the Cosmo-swilling cougars from Sex In The City.

“I was sure the Golden Globe for special effects would go to the team that airbrushed that “Sex In The City” poster. Girls, we know how old you are. I saw one of you in an episode of Bonanza.”

The distinction between Gervais and Clarkson is that Gervais targets himself as much as others. Plus, Gervais went for the jugulars of the wealthy and famous, Clarkson cruelly generalized and negatively stereotyped an entire nation.

Celebrities seen here demonstrating outside Ricky Gervais's hotel

Award For Most British, British Movie Star : Colin Firth

Colin Firth: Seen here not dressed as a King

Colin Firth’s portrayal of King George VI sealed this year’s award of being the “Most British, British Movie Star.” Cheerio, pip, pip and all that rot, Colin. Good luck winning a real award at the Oscars for “The King’s Speech.” We are all counting on you.

Award For Best Attempt At Killing Your Career Just As You Were Making Money And Achieving “C”…Maybe “D-List” Status In America

British soccer analyst Andy Gray covered the 2010 World Cup in the United States and received positive acclaim and attention with his excitable, yet no-nonsense approach and analysis. He was recently fired by Sky Sports for making sexist comments regarding a soccer official during the broadcast of an English Premier League game. “Can you believe that? A female linesman. Women don’t know the offside rule.” 

Well done, Andy; women don’t know how to drive a car, change a flat tire, fly a plane, be an astronaut, or lead a country, and they certainly couldn’t possibly understand the complicated offside rule. Idiot!

Happy Birthday, Bay Area Brit, here’s to another year. Oh, and in case you missed it–here you go.

"I'm sorry I called you a stupid, British monkey...Please don't Tweet that pic."

The Fine Art of Diplomacy

When I was a kid, my friend Edgar and I were at his house in South London watching a film about American frontiersmen. The adventurous family was heading west in search of a new start. All of their possessions were packed tightly onto a raft made of tree logs and some extra-strength tree vine. Their vessel was slowly drifting down the river and the film’s soundtrack indicated all was well with “cruising down the river at a nice leisurely pace” music.

But then the music changed, it became a little quicker and louder.

The family’s raft seemed to be picking up speed, the water moving more unpredictably. The music had alerted us that danger was coming.  It was all very exciting and Edgar and I were sucked into the moment. One of the kids looked ahead down the river and yelled back to his parents with panic:

“LOOK OUT! RABBITS!….RABBITS AHEAD!”

Edgar and I looked at each other in astonishment. “Rabbits? In the river? Can rabbits swim? Even if they could, should they really be feared as if they were a school of long-eared piranha fish?”

After about a minute of eagerly awaiting these flesh-eating, cotton-tailed bunnies, Edgar and I figured it out. “Oh, rapids—they’re worried about rapids. Well that makes much more sense.” We hadn’t understood the American child’s accent.

In this instance no harm done. Kids watching TV. What if the context were different and the stakes much higher? What if the President of the United States was given information in a foreign language that was incorrect because the person conveying it misheard or misunderstood what was intended.

Enter The International Translator.

The international translator has the most important job in the world. Failing to decipher the real meaning of a sentence filled with ambiguity could be the difference between war and peace.

Example: “Let me give you some fruit punch.” Translate this from English into a foreign language and then back into English. You can bet that any rearrangement of words in that sentence could lead to trouble and perhaps even a scuffle.

In the game Chinese Whispers, one person whispers an original sentence into another’s ear, and then that person to the next person and so on. The last set of ears might receive some words totally different from the first. Depending on the room this can be dangerous. For example at a mafia meeting, “Can you pass down the coffee?” Could quite easily become “I think we should whack Don Corleone.”

The responsibility of the international translator’s job is beyond compare. Yet, who are these people? They stand off camera, lurking on the edge of the shadows with headphones on, a whisper away from the President’s ear. Do these people have relationships with their international counterparts? After the summit do they joke about how good it is to finally have a President that can properly pronounce the word “nuclear?”

Surely these multi-linguists must have relationships with each other, after all, they are the kings and queens of diplomacy and communication. If an argument arose they could settle their differences with a well-chosen turn of phrase, with a multitude of languages to pick from to get the nuance just right.

After a hard day’s work, does the international translator lie awake at night wondering whether he conveyed to the President that the Russian Premier might have been being sarcastic when he offered to reduce the amount of nuclear weapons stationed in Cuba?

Words in a sentence or inflections in a word, perhaps a raised eyebrow here, a cough, a pause. All of these things change the meaning of what has been said.

So, kids, when you’re in school and told that the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand was the reason that the world was catapulted into war in 1914—don’t be so sure. Someone may have ordered the assassination, but they might also have simply been asking for someone to pass down the coffee.