Friday, 29 July 2016

Talking like Optimus Prime to get your 6 year old son to do something #BritishDadStuff



You know you're a Great British Dad...
...when you give yourself a hoarse throat from giving your 6 year old son orders in the voice of Optimus Prime because it's the only way you can get stuff through to him.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GCkDZcHIev8

OPTIMUS VOICE:
"Before time began, there was The Cube.
We know not where it comes from. Only that it holds the power to create worlds and fill them with life.
That was how our race was born.
For a time, we lived in harmony. But like all great power, some wanted it for good, and some for evil.
And so began the war.
A war that ravaged our planet until it was consumed by death. And the cube was lost to the far reaches of space. We scattered across the galaxy, hoping to find it, and rebuild our home, searching every star, every world. And just when all hope seemed lost - message of a new discovery drew us to an unknown planet called... Earth.
But we were already too late.

Can you pick up your Lego now, it's the fourth time I asked. Please."

That last bit was me, but I'm hoping he doesn't notice the join.

I'm putting these quotes here, but I'll be using them to jazz up my little call-to-action on these posts where I leave the link if you want to sign up to this blog by email...


Autobots, roll out!

At the end of this day - one shall stand. One shall fall.

Fate has yielded its reward. A new world to call "home".

We live among its people now, watching over them, waiting, protecting.

I have witnessed their capacity for courage. And though we are worlds apart. Like us, there's more to them than meets the eye.

For in our quest to protect the humans, a deeper revelation dawns. Our worlds have met before...


OPTIMUS PRIME QUOTES!

“Fate rarely calls upon us at a moment of our choosing.”
“Sometimes even the wisest of men and machines can be in error.”
“We lost a great comrade, but gained new ones. Thank you, all of you. You honour us with your bravery.”
“Like us, there’s more to them than meets the eye.”
“I will accept this burden with all that I am!”
“There’s a thin line between being a hero and being a memory.”
“Until that day… till all are one.”
“It’s been an honour serving with you all.”

MORE QUOTES HERE!


http://quotableoptimusprime.blogspot.co.uk/

"There’s only one way to deal with this, and that’s to stomp it flat."

"Thank you, all of you. You honor us with your bravery."

"Stay behind me!"
"Let them think for themselves, to grow in knowledge and wisdom. And let them always value freedom and life wherever they find it."
"There’s a thin line between being a hero and being a memory."
"One shall stand, one shall fall."

"Freedom is the right of all sentient beings."

"Fate rarely calls upon us at a moment of our choosing."
"There's more to them than meets the eye."
"As long as power flows through any of my circuits Megatron, I’ll fight you."


My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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click here


For in our quest to protect the humans, a deeper revelation dawns. Our worlds have met before... You can subscribe to receive these posts daily, by just clicking on the link here. Thank you.

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Man in coffee shop. Scrolling down his phone. Jigging his knee. #BritishDadStuff



You know you're a Great British Dad...
...when you can see suffering, and want to do something about it.


I was in the coffee shop the other day,
and walked past a man hunched over a newspaper spread all over the table,
with a coffee, scrolling down his phone.

He didn't look happy.

He kept on scrolling and scrolling, over his open newspaper, jigging his knee.

To him, he's taking a well-earned break, with a nice coffee... probably catching up on all the news he's missed before he came in.

It's something he really wants to do, and he's paid actual money to be here.

And he's still scrolling and scrolling.

And jigging his knee.

And he's frowning.

Scrolling and scrolling.

Jigging his knee.

I realise that I'm staring at him.

That's how I'm spending the money here.

I can't stop looking at him,

scrolling and scrolling.

And that jigging knee.

Then I'm thinking, if an animal is behaving like this in a zoo... we'd be a bit concerned.

Worried even.

We'd probably step in, and try to stop this distress that they're clearly showing.

So I stroked his head and said "shhhhhh".

But he bit my hand and hid in the corner.

Turns out they are not there for our entertainment.

And we should never try to intervene.

My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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When you get pen marks off your car interior... #BritishDadStuff


I am Optimus Prime,
and I send this message to any surviving Autobots taking refuge among the stars.
We are waiting.
And you can subscribe to my blog by email here.

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

When you get pen marks off your car interior... #BritishDadStuff



You know that you are a Great British Dad...
...when life brings you lemons, you make... a youtube walkthrough video.


Another video - this time to show you how to get pen (or crayon or biro) out of your car interior upholstery - especially the light coloured fabric on the roof.

Don't know why we've got pens in the back... the way I drive should be entertainment enough.

I am proud of my girl's creativity though.
Look at it - it's like the Sistine Chapel.
(If it were near a bored 5 year old with a Crayola).

The trick with this is dab at it with your pants - as always - don't rub.

I was scared this was going to go wrong.

And what? I've already got pen on my roof.

Sure, we all love the Disney liberal Hollywood agenda musicals... but how about just once they do a movie called Don't Draw On Your Dad's Roof.

Like all Dads, all I want to do is make the devaluing go down less quickly...
... then we win.

But it's a Volkswagen recalled car - so the mindless scrawl all over it's probably made it go up in value.


So I hope this video helps.




It's the third video where I'm fixing something using surgical spirit -- they should call it "You've got a kid and you care too much about your stuff liquid."

My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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Me trying to help an angry old lady not cross the road #BritishDadStuff


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Monday, 25 July 2016

Me trying to help an angry old lady not cross the road #BritishDadStuff



You know that you are a Great British Dad...
...when you over-think your role in the community.


EXT. QUIET STREETS - DAY

I'm walking down the street. Thinking so loud, you can hear it.

ME:
(VOICEOVER) I wonder if I'm too self-involved. I want to be more mindful - more aware. I'm just too in my own head the whole time.

POV: An OLD LADY struggles with a FRAME across the road, trying to step off the kerb.

ME:
(VOICEOVER) She's too far away for me to help. It'd be weird to run over... Probably bit demeaning too. (BEAT) I know! I'll shoot her a nice supportive winning smile.

OLD LADY looks up, catches this, and scowls.

OLD LADY:
(SHOUTING) Oh yeah, that's nice.

I turn on the spot. There's someone behind me, right?

OLD LADY:
I can't walk and there's you laughing at me.

ME:
(VOICEOVER) She thinks I'm having a go.

OLD LADY:
Look at you, standing there. Making fun of me. That's very nice that is. (ETC.)

ME:
(VOICEOVER) I've really upset her... I can't go over there now - she'll think I'm attacking her... How can I show her everything's okay...

I U-TURN AND RUN. Like Chris Froome up Mont Ventoux.

OLD LADY:
(SHOUTING) Go on. Be like that. You'll be like this one day.

I run faster.


My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here. Specially after I've gone through all my posts to put the best ones in the right order...

Previous post...
Avoiding Road Rage with Air Triangles #BritishDadStuff


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Sunday, 24 July 2016

Avoiding Road Rage with Air Triangles #BritishDadStuff


(Reconstruction: shot in a stationary vehicle)

You know you're a Great British Dad...
...when you're thinking up new ways to avoid road rage.


We're in the car and we're trying to avoid the inevitable Road Rage - so I put on some Classic FM.

That goes down about as well as you think it would go down with a family locked in for a long drive -- but a jolly tune came on.

(I looked it up, turns out it's the Second Movement of Mahler's Symphony No. 1 - about 16 seconds in)



Then got the whole car to play air-triangle on the bits where the triangle comes in.

It wasn't until the end of the track that it finally hit me... that we're now driving past everyone, with our whole car - everyone - all giving it some air-triangle motions - at them - furiously with our hands.

Just as Mahler intended when he wrote it.
Probably.




My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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Why choose an arts subject for GCSE, or anything #BritishDadStuff


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Saturday, 23 July 2016

Why choose an arts subject for GCSE, or anything #BritishDadStuff



You know you're a Great British Dad...
...when you wonder if it really is about you wanting your kid to get good grades.


I've got a friend who's a teacher.

She's having a hard time getting kids to commit to arts subjects.

Turns out they're under attack from politicians and parents.

I can see why - arts subjects are useless.

There's no manual - there's textbooks, but no manual - so you can't just pass on the right answers.

Which means they're a cowson to grade.

So how are we meant to hit targets for the politicians?

They're unnecessary, and they get in the way of keeping things the way they are.

Anyway, she asked if her mates who've done arts subjects could make a video to say what we did and how it helps.

I did a Drama degree. I'd meet my mates in the bar who'd done Physics in the lab for 8 hours straight.

I'd tell them about how I was a tree.

Or some trust game where I'd been carried around a room by some girls.

It's meant to be useless.

And if you need me to explain why me spending a day as a tree or being carried around by some girls isn't a terrible thing for the world, then that's a bit of a shame... But I'm probably a bit more curious about why we need more people to fit in.

Anyway, here's the go I took...




My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

Previous post...
What we can learn from Chris Froome running up Mont Ventoux


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Friday, 22 July 2016

What we can learn from Chris Froome running up Mont Ventoux



Seeing the Tour De France Yellow Jersey, Chris Froome, running up Mont Ventoux after his bike crash near the finish was pretty special.

But heard this a few days later from his team's General Manager Dave Brailsford.

It's a great quote about dealing with knocks in life: dealing with "what is" instead of how you want it to be.
(Guess you could call it good Sky-chology).




"I think for a lot of people in that type of scenario, you've seen people throw their bikes away and have a bit of a fit by the side of the road etc.

"Why has that happened to me?!" sort of thing,
"This is crazy".

He didn't.

He headed off for the line."


"...The difference between emotion and logical thinking and how you manage these types of situations.

And what we know is that the goalposts move.

And people get upset.

"Oh the goalposts have moved"
and they get emotionally upset about why it moved and how it moved, and "It's not fair" etc etc.

What we've done over the years is trained ourselves time and again to recognise

"It's not if the goalposts move" - the goalposts will move.

And when they do move,
be the first to react to it in a logical way.

And don't let emotion drive your decision making.
Don't let emotion drive your thoughts and behaviour.
Come back to logic and try to be logical and calm in those situations."


And then... RUN!

(I added that last bit)

And I've just added this to the Tour De France clips in the link below...

Adam Yates hitting the 1km banner.




This is where I put all my favourite Tour De France clips...

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What I want to tell my son... Always let women choose the date. #BritishDadStuff


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Thursday, 21 July 2016

What I want to tell my son... Always let women choose the date. #BritishDadStuff



You know that you're a Great British Dad when...
...you keep writing that book of wisdom for your children.


This is what I want to tell my son:
This is for him. Not you. If you're curious, that's cool.
Maybe it's for daughters too.
Let's go with one thing at a time.

People think to be a man - you have to go out there and "get the girl".
And that's sort of part of it.
But it's not like that really.
It's got nothing to do with you.

Women sort of know when they are ready to be with you.
And - this sounds barmy - but it's only on certain days.
I don't mean that in a rude way - or to be embarrassing - I mean it about your company. Just having you being around.

The great thing is - if you accidentally stumble on those certain days - let those days happen - I promise you're more likely to hit it off, and that might even last more than once.

I know men - good men - really nice guys who get really frustrated because the girl they thought liked them has bumped this date or that, or moved a meeting up time to some other day. And they're all whining about it.

And I want to say - can't you see?
This is brilliant.
She doesn't even know it, but biologically she is teeing you up, for another time, to hook up with you.
Fist-chewingly frustrating of all - they seem completely unaware that they're even doing that.

Always always always let a girl choose and have ultimate veto on when you meet up, go out, or do stuff.
I promise you, pushing it to your timetable, or putting your foot down on the time, always always always always goes wrong.

Next time I will tell you about the importance of "taking your socks off first".
Because I want the Grandkids.
Just not before I'm 60.


My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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El Bimbo - The Music From The Blue Oyster Bar (in Police Academy) and where it all came from


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Wednesday, 20 July 2016

El Bimbo - The Music From The Blue Oyster Bar (in Police Academy) and where it all came from



At school, my mate Rob and I would hilariously break into this tune, any excuse, any given moment.

If you don't know the bit from Police Academy, it's okay, I won't explain it here.

And because it was 100 years ago, it was impossible to get a recording of it anywhere.

Now it's one of the tunes I've spent way to long tracking down where it's come from
(the others include Go West, and Take On Me) - they've got surprising versions behind them.

So here's my little shrine to "El Bimbo".

First, feast your eyes on this! Bimbo Jet from 1974



But in the movie credits, the tune is "Written by Claude Ganem and Performed by Jean-Marc Dompierre and his Orchestra"

I can't find any Jean-Marc Dompierre videos, so here's Paul Mauriat — El Bimbo



And here it is in German - Marion Rung - El Bimbo (Hitparade 1975)



But all of this might be a little unfair -- there's controversy online over whether this guy wrote the thing - the Afghan performer Ahmad Zahir. (It all depends if you believe the date of his album "Lylee" is 1971 or 1977...) Either way...

Tanha Shodam Tanha



Sing along now!

Tanha shodam tanha
Asooda az ghawgha shodam
Az bas ke khordam khoon-e dil
Chun ghoncha az ham shodam
Baaz ast dar-haye qafaz – ay morgh-e dil parwaz kon – gulha ke een gulzar raa
Man aashiq tanhayee am – khod mahram-e raaz-e khodam – ba naghma pardazan bego

Translation:
I'm left alone, alone
(literally: I became alone, alone)
I'm left relieved of any chaos
(literally: I got/became relieved from all this riot)
So much i took this pain that
(literally: so much I drank my heart's blood that
(it's a kind of a proverb in middle east speakers for expressing being in pain or bearing the pain like: khon-e dil/khon-e jigar))
I started to develop like a flower bud
(literally: I blossomed like a newborn flower (a red flower from the blood been drunk))

The cage is open, Fly O bird of my heart
(imagination)(literally: the cage doors are open--o bird of my heart fly (imagination))
There are lots of flowers in this flower field (rose garden)
but I'm in love with my privacy
(literally: the flower field is full of flower - I love the privacy)
I'm confidant to my own secrets, Go tell musicians
(literally: myself am confidant to my own secrets, discuss with musicians or tell the musicians)


All my fave things from the web are here...

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How to turn back time on a recalled Volkswagen #BritishDadStuff


Tuesday, 19 July 2016

How to turn back time on a recalled Volkswagen #BritishDadStuff



You know that you are a Great British Dad...
...when you have the urge to make very dull how-to videos.


I'm really torn about sharing these videos on the blog.
I'm experimenting - they're very specific things that I have had to look up and they're not online.
So what's the urge to fill this gap in human knowledge?

I hate being on camera - so why do I still want to do it?
Is it some kind of Dad biological need to teach you - my surrogate children - all the things I have learned on life's journey?

I guess this is my Legacy.
And I'm putting them here each day, so that over time my Legacy will become the greatest body of wisdom I can build and pass on.
Today, the most important and urgent thing I have to share with you is
"How to avoid coping with the wrong time on a VW Touran"



I blew our family's wealth - and your inheritance - on a recalled car that will get no refund or compensation - but it's okay...
...because now I can show you how to change the clock on the thing.

My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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My supermarket review from every single living week #British Dad Stuff


Monday, 18 July 2016

My supermarket review from every single living week #British Dad Stuff



You know that you're a Great British Dad...
...when your reviews on Google+ are only there to help other Dads.



Here's one I left for a big supermarket on Google maps the other day.

★★★★★ We treat this place like a theme park.

It costs about the same to visit, and there's plenty to do.

Aisles 1-5 are spent yelling "No" when the kids just want to get to the toy aisle. When we finally get to the toy shelves, that's where the No's end and the fun really begins!

"no"
"not today",
"maybe Christmas",
"I've put it on the list"
(there is no "list"),
"I've got no money",
"Daddy's got a terrible job",
"We should use less electricity",
"Sorry",
"You've got one already",
"You won't want to play with it tomorrow",
"you won't, I promise you, it'll be just like the X-wing that's in bits under the stairs",
"yes you could try tidying your bedroom, but how about doing it for love",
"no",
"no really",
"I need to buy some food now",
"I don't care, you can lie there all day if you like",
"you're in the way now - mind the lady",
"do you want to sit on my head?"
"I only came in for some milk",
"Please can we go now?".

And then we're done.

Time for a bit more "no" in the soft cheese aisle (for some reason - usually over something with cartoons on it).

There's no "no's" in fruit and veg, obvs.

But just when you think it's over... checkouts!

Four shelves of pure 100% NO - right by the tills...

It's the ASDAs theme park gift shop.

"No"
"No, you can't have a Kinder Surprise"
"Or a Mars bar."
"You don't even like peanuts."
"Please don't touch."
"I know it's right in front of you, that's why they put it there."
"Please... put it back."
"Help Daddy put the things on the conveyor belt."
"The things in the trolley, not the Kinder Surprise."
"I don't care if it's rolling."
"Or yellow"
"No"
"No."

Five stars!
#BritishDadStuff


And don't forget to add the nice photo.




My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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NBC's four tips for writing a knockout TV pilot #amwriting




Sunday, 17 July 2016

NBC's four tips for writing a knockout TV pilot #amwriting



Adding this to my "How to write comedy..." page (link below) Still feels weird doing the copying and pasting, instead of the writing... but these sites help, so just sharing the love and links along the way...

4 TIPS FOR WRITING A GOOD TV PILOT FROM NBC
A good pilot script does 4 things:

Starts with a strong trigger incident.

The trigger incident leads the central character into a powerful dilemma.

The goal of the A story stems from the choice the character makes when faced with the dilemma.

Every pivotal point in the story connects back to the character’s goal

There's more in this slideshow, especially on how a Five Act TV structure breaks down...



TV DRAMA - 101

TEASER
- Story trigger
- Show world
- Create empathy for hero

ACT ONE
- Set up storylines. Each arc with a dilemma.
- Set up conflict
- Set up clear goal established for “A” story
- Introduce obstacle

ACT TWO
- Central characters should be actively pursuing goal
- Escalate obstacles
- Reminder of stakes
- End Act with obstacle to goal

ACT THREE
- When hero gets over one obstacle, create new ones
- Escalate obstacles and stakes
- It’s possible that goal shifts or the motivation for achieving the goal shifts
- Send character in new direction

ACT FOUR
- Move toward “all is lost” moments in each of your storylines
- All is lost moment happens, connects back to goal

ACT FIVE
- Show resolution, goals achieved (or not)
- Tie up sub-plots
- If serialised, set up cliffhanger


It's all from the NBC Universal tips site here

...but my Big bank of How to write story links... is still coming together here

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Help! Disabled train toilet door wont work! My new #BritishDadStuff movie


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Thursday, 14 July 2016

Help! Disabled train toilet door wont work! My new #BritishDadStuff movie



You know you're a Great British Dad...
...when you hide your deepest irrational fears. But make short movies about them instead.


ME:
"Hello, I'm Neil, and today I'm going to show you a short movie that I've made. It's about the biggest fear that all commuters have.
And that is the disabled train door toilets opening while you're in there.

I don't know why it's such a big fear...

because all that would happen is that everyone else in the carriage would see your bum.

But everyone else in the carriage would be just as scared of showing their bum.

So it's a bit of an irrational fear.

Anyway, hope you enjoy this film.

And I would just like to thank Southern Railway and their shareholders for their assistance in making this happen.
Or not happen.

Enjoy."


Help! Disabled train toilet door wont work! Un film de #BritishDadStuff




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Teaching my kids about why we have CCTV everywhere #BritishDadStuff


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Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Teaching my kids about why we have CCTV everywhere #BritishDadStuff


(Fun fact: my gut is completely computer-generated)

You know that you are a Great British Dad...
...when you lie to your kids about how the world really works.


"That sign means we are being filmed."
my son said to me - pointing to the CCTV sign in the window of our favourite local toy shop.

I was shocked - not that they've got it - but that I'd never bothered noticing the sign right on the front door.

Mainly because I wasn't looking out for it.

It's so normal - that my 7 year old son is calling out something I'd long since accepted.

"I don't like it.
I don't want people filming me."

He's right.
The next bit I said was terrible.

"Oh, it's just there to make sure you're safe."

I'm not sad that the cameras are there filming us as part of the deal for doing things the way we do them.

I am sad that I lied and covered for it on my son's behalf.

He'd completely understand it, but I couldn't fully talk through how we got to the point where things have to feel like we've got to have them covered by cameras - whether or not they're covered by cameras.

And we're so much safer, now that the cameras are on us.
Everywhere.
Aren't we.
You feel so much safer now, right?

It shocked me that it bothered my 7 year old boy - because he should feel uncomfortable by it. I remember those weird cameras when I was a kid - in Boots or Woolworths - the black domes with 6 chrome lenses sticking out at all angles.
I guess so you wouldn't know which was the real one.

Maybe I should put a camera on me during the day so that I can help prevent more parenting crimes.

Maybe it'll help me stop lying to my son.

I wish I could remember the name of a BBC Radio 4 doc, years ago - about the world of CCTV operators. A university study found a weird thing in every control room they surveyed.

They found that there's always, always, at least one camera trained on "something nice".
Like a squirrel.
Or a patch of grass.
Just one monitor where they didn't constantly look out for acts that are evil.


What if the camera footage were used for evidence gathering purposes of nice things?

A flower opening up to bud on the pavement.

A toddler losing their stabilisers and riding their bike for the first time in the park.

Old people being helped off the train by other passengers.

Someone choosing an ingredient for a thoughtful meal in a supermarket aisle.


And what if the real problem with CCTV is that we don't know where the footage goes, or if it's kept.

What if we could capture, and share, and explore the good, the nice and the kind things with CCTV.

What if that helped us to do more of those things?

But I guess it's just down to us now to film and share those nice things.
So it all comes off as a bit vain.

It'd be much better if it were done by some anonymous CCTV operator or remote server.

There could be some kind of Crimewatch-style programme, using the footage of these random acts of kindness.

"And please don't worry as you watch this... this man might strike again."

Open Circuit Television.
OCTV.
Let's make it happen.

And then film it badly from a distance.


My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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We got no leaflets in the post shouting at me to do something #BritishDadStuff


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Tuesday, 12 July 2016

We got no leaflets in the post shouting at me to do something #BritishDadStuff



You know that you are a Great British Dad...
...when you’re tired of being yelled at by people who aren’t even under your roof.


Disappointed that in the post today, there weren't any leaflets with capital letters shouting at me to do something.

Because it looks like they only show up when there’s something that they want me to do... right now.



And it turns out the smaller the lettering... the longer it takes to get to our bin.

Which is a shame, because they think they'll get me to do whatever they want to get me to do - quicker - if they use bigger words.

Or bigger paper.

But that's why our letterboxes are that big - it's to stop people shouting through them....

...or using the next size up from A4.

Maybe it might be less rude if, you know, they showed up once - just once - when they didn't want me to do, whatever they want to get me to do... right now.

And I guess we already paid for the ones in these pictures...

so we thought we might as well try and use them in our house for our own "message".




My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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THE PROBLEM WITH SPUD-U-LIKE (30 years after it was needed) #BritishDadStuff


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Monday, 11 July 2016

THE PROBLEM WITH SPUD-U-LIKE (30 years after it was needed) #BritishDadStuff

(source: Spud-U-Like)

You know that you are a Great British Dad...
...when you work with your wife to fix things from your own childhood.


My Wife and I spent about an hour fixing the broken fast-food chain Spud-U-Like, 30 years after we last visited.

My experiences are completely based on the walk down the steep hill from the station in Brighton.

My Mum and Sister would always go down the left hand side of the road to get a "beans" Spud-U-Like in the restaurant there.


Our chat was in-depth and intense.

It included ideas for changing the green and yellow plastic decor of the shop fittings, through to the polystyrene boxes the potatoes came in.

How could they not see that the plastic knife would always saw through the bottom of your box too, letting out the filling.

And that's another thing - the amount of filling was so poor.

There's a terrible ratio of filling-to-potato.

(Which is why Double Big Macs never work - but that's a whole other marital beef. Burger.

And pate-to-toast starters in restaurants.
You'd think that the chef would put more bread, which is cheaper, so that the starter works.
Instead, we're forced to eat the pate with the garnish, like animals.)


Anyway, see, I'm off on one already.

An hour of our lives were spent discussing how brilliant Spud-U-Like would be now in this Artisan-natural-hand-created waft of marketing we get in the high-street chains now.

Then I looked it up to get a photo of an 80's Spud-U-Like for this post, and found out that it's still going strong and they fixed all the things we fixed.

We'll never have this time again.


My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad is coming together here

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My gas company wants to know my kids date of birth #BritishDadStuff


Believe it or not, you can get these posts as they come out by email, just by subscribing on this little link here... or in the box on the right hand side. The subscriptions are now into double figures and I love each and every one of them, because it gives me courage to keep this thing going...

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

My gas company wants to know my kids date of birth #BritishDadStuff



You know that you're a Great British Dad...
...when you sing like a canary every time a company wants to data-mine you.


I got really data-mined hard yesterday.
Really hard.
I gave good data.

I went to close an account with a water company, and they wanted my mobile number.

Maybe it’s so they can reach me if there’s a problem with closing the account.

And my email address.

Maybe to tell me the account is closed.

Then they wanted my date of birth.

My date of birth.

So I’m on the phone, to close the account...

...now trying to work out if I should give this privately-owned utility service and infrastructure company the exact moment I came into creation, being and existence.

Maybe it’s because they want to throw me a birthday party.

Or maybe it's more sinister...

They want to know when the waters broke, so their waters can make me broke.

Eh, EH?

(Why do I always think up these 3 days after the phonecall.)

If they get my date of birth, then they know exactly how old I'm getting...

I’m going to be weeing a lot more, so maybe they can charge me more.

But it’s more likely to be in my pants, so the joke’s on them.


My energy company - while I’m trying to change tarriff - wanted the date of birth... of my kids.

Of course, it’s in the event of a catastrophic emergency, they can prioritise the vulnerable in the area.

But why can’t I just give their ages?

Hang on.
When have you ever known an energy company using kid's birthdays for operational reasons.

So it’s completely normal for your electricity provider to be obsessed about the fertility of your household.

Maybe they’re trying to work out if their power cuts lead to babies. 9 months later.

I know what’s going on here.

I think they want to supply gas, electricity...

...and a big-ass surprise cake.

Yeahhhh. I'm on to them.

They’ve got the gas to bake it.


My complete guide to Understanding Your British Dad will come together here. I promise. I printed it out in Word today to see how it looks, and everything.

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I wrote for JazzDuck - a free Amazon Prime pilot kids show - what now, is up to you...

Friday, 1 July 2016

I wrote for JazzDuck - a free Amazon Prime pilot kids show - what now, is up to you...



Wrote on a show called JAZZDUCK... (link here)


A duck in a big city, shaped like a saxophone, communicating musically through [PARPS!] from his end.

It’s a new pilot on Amazon Prime, and available for free as part of their "pilot season" this week as one of a couple of kids series.

A video posted by JazzDuck (@jazzducktv) on



I grew up in the world of traditional TV commissioning...

So the differences in working in "streaming"
- no transmission date,
no one-off overnight ratings,
no dips due to weather or national holidays,
available everywhere, any time.
...are all lovely.

The scripting on Jazz Duck was the same fun, and we already know all of this but... it still feels like a novelty that what happens next is about accumulating views and feedback.



Plus the feedback comes direct from the audience.
(for example, you can leave a rating which appears on its listing
), instead of relying on a big bang moment on-air with maybe some random and occasional repeats.

Which means I get to forward this link, as part of the team who are all also sharing this out there.

And think I've said this before - but it's more like working as part of a touring theatre company, than hairy old one-way Legacy TV.

How cool is this - you can help get it over the line...

and maybe even help make it even better...

by just sampling it.

The link for the series for you to check out, is here
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01G9FG5D0/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_ZuLDxbDNAXN2H


JazzDuck's twitter is here

Who knows what will happen next?


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We have exited our house from The News #BritishDadStuff


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