Tag Archives: Hunter S Thompson

Reasons for celebration in the British comedy industry

Yesterday and today have been days of me hearing about travel but not actually going anywhere myself except travelling for tea in Soho via a train in which the stranger opposite me kept farting… and driving from Greenwich to Borehamwood and finding the M25 turn-off I needed was closed.

This is neither glamorous nor very interesting.

But I had tea yesterday with someone who shall be nameless who was celebrating the fact that football manager Harry Redknapp, currently on trial for tax evasion, had opened a bank account in Monaco in the name of his dog.

“It’s comedy gold,” this nameless person enthused. “Writers and comedians all over the country must be celebrating. They say it’s all Rover? It is now.”

The reason this person cannot be named is that he told me a relation of his is an alcoholic who lives in Finland.

“Why does he live in Finland?” I asked.

“Because he is an alcoholic,” came the reply. “So, in Finland, he seems perfectly normal or even sober.”

This rings true. As I have previously blogged, I do not think I have ever met a sober Finn. Very nice people. But mostly drunk most of the time.

You cannot beat a good xenophobic generalisation, I find.

Take the cliché of the drunken Englishman abroad…

From Australia yesterday, I got two e-mails from English comedian Bob Slayer, a would-be Foreign Correspondent for this very So It Goes blog which you are reading.

The first e-mail read:

“I did warn you that the combination of alcohol and an iPad could make some of my reports incomprehensible. I am currently full of drink in a Burger King (they call them Hungry Jack’s out here) where they have free interweb. I will get a bus to the airport and fly to Perth. Where it is hot. I have no more energy to type anything of note. Goodbye Melbourne, you beautiful backward en-trend land of ladies in summery dresses and cowboy boots – I will miss you.”

The second, later, e-mail read:

“I have arrived in Perth and one wheel has fallen off my suitcase (I had already lost a handle in Melbourne). This is somewhat impeding my progress.”

Bob Slayer has always told me that his decision to enter the world of comedy as a stand-up (after ten years behind-the-scenes in the music business) was made after reading godfather-of-British-alternative-comedy Malcolm Hardee’s autobiography I Stole Freddie Mercury’s Birthday Cake.

I have always had a suspicion that Bob mis-read Malcolm’s character in the book and got the idea that he was a very loud, constantly-drunk, OTT extrovert anarchist. In fact, like many great characters, Malcolm was a rather shy, occasionally drunk, occasionally OTT introverted extrovert with anarchic tendencies.

Now I fear Bob may be modelling himself on Hunter S. Thompson’s book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. This can only lead to drug-fuelled paranoia, guns and a surprisingly bad film by Johnny Depp and Terry Gilliam.

However, it might well also result in some good blogs. So I shall, in a subtle spirit of amoral comradeship, encourage Bob on his downward spiral of self-destructive excess.

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Filed under Australia, Comedy, Drink, Drugs, Finland

Suspicious Italian lawyers and a warning to Australian comedy lovers

Yesterday, I took a trip to Lake Como in Italy or, rather, to the town of Como, which has easy access to Switzerland across the lake and seems to have a suspiciously high number of “studio legale” – solicitors’ offices.

Apart from that, my day seemed to be mostly taken up with traffic jams.

I did, though, get an e-mail from comedian Bob Slayer back in the UK, who tells me he is preparing to go to Perth Fringe World in Australia and is looking forward to a month in the sun.

“After Perth,” he tells me, “I will be doing a comedy tour of mining and rural towns around the outback all the way to the Adelaide Fringe. I will be travelling in a Ute that runs on cooking oil… with a goat called Gary and a comic called Jimbo who drinks his own wee.”

Confusingly, there are two comics called Jimbo.

This is the one whose website bills him as “Australia’s crudest comedian”.

Only a soul as hardy as this could even contemplate the terrifying thought of traversing the outback with a Bob Slayer who will have easy access to beer and be in the home country of Priscilla Queen of The Desert.

Bob has promised, dear reader, to be one of this blog’s ‘foreign correspondents’. I fear reports on his escapades Down Under may well make Hunter S Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas seem like Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm.

You have been warned.

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Filed under Australia, Comedy, Italy