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Wednesday, 7 November 2007


Contrary to what you may have heard, satire actually is by far the sharpest weapon in the writer's armoury. That said, to all intents and purposes, it might as well still be the bluntest for all the good it does. You see, it seems that no matter that s/he may have aimed to skewer the heart or how accurate the barb, the satirist still only succeeds in doing little more than clipping the toenails of the intended target with his or her rapier-like wit. I suppose it does loosen and redirect some bile though, so it's not completely without purpose...

Lsst night I made a terrible mistake. Scrolling through the onscreen TV guide, I alighted on a programme I didn't recognise from it's foreshortened title in the listings. Unfortunately, it featured Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall - or Hugh Titting Fearnley-Fucking Whitting-Cunting-Stall as he's affectionately known in our house. I don't want you to get the impression that we don't like the chap. As vegetarians, we like little more than to turn on our set, sip at a glass of freshly squeezed kitten's blood and watch Hugh saw away at a bison or hang a calf upside down or any similarly rational and cuddly activities he might deploy to entertain and educate us in matters culinary.

He is, in the unlikely instance that anyone reading this hasn't come across him already, the sort of carnivore who looks askance at a dollop of buffalo mozarella before enquiring in a pained voice, "what have you done with its horns?" So you can imagine my joy at finding him there on the screen before me, grappling some chocolate sponge cake-coloured soil with a demonic Nicky Horne lookalike from the other side of the Atlantic at his side. It transpires that Hugh has hit upon the idea of dispensing with the services of the local market gardens and abbatoirs and embarked instead upon transforming his own backyard into a fully functioning farm capable of providing comestibles for his famous restaurant, the River Cafe - or something or other Cafe. All excellent stuff.

So, soil duly grappled - "is it any good?", Hugh asks the diabolical bearded dwarf beside him; Christ, the man really will eat *anything*, it seems - the Hughster sets about inspecting his livestock. "I'd been a bit apprehensive about this aspect of farming", confides Hughie as he does that cutlass sharpening thing with a couple of lengthy carving knives, a maniacal grin spreading about his otherwise cherubic face. "But it turns out to be a breeze". Apparently, you just bung a bit of sawdust in the general direction of those little brown things with the wings and beaks and give the occasional showers to the penned up pink thingies with the snouty noses every now and then and nature pretty much takes its course.

"The pigs are a real revelation", enthuses H.T.F.F.W.C.S. "Not only can you get a fair old bit of meat off them, but the kids love 'em and they're actually rather good company!" I don't want to appear to be jumping on my soapbox here and lapsing into a predictable and over-emotionalised piece of animal rights polemic or anything. So can I just assure the gentle reader that I have at no point in my life ever owned, much less stood upon, anything as coarse and demeaning as a soapbox. Now, can I get back to the predictable and over-emotionalised piece of animal rights polemic? OK. But, really, one can only hope that The Hughster doesn't waver from this attitude when Monty Don or Sophie Grigson or any of his other "well, I just sort of ambled into a career in the media really, because I come from a good family and I can be more or less relied upon to open a bag of seeds the right way up and not say the word 'oik' when I'm referring to a tradesman and that sort of thing" friends come for supper. "Ho Ho Ho, yes isn't uncle Monty a card trussed up like that Jemimah. Now, are you sure you can manage a whole leg, Alpha Romeo? And how about you Ezekiel? Are you sure you wouldn't rather I sliced the trousers off for you?"

Don't get me wrong - I have nothing against people who eat meat. Most of them would, I'm fairly sure, be like me if they had to wring a chicken's neck or stab a lamb in the throat themselves to get their food. The worst you can say about the average British carnivore is that they're a bit lazy. No, it's cunts like H.T.F.F.W.C.S. and Gordon Fucking Ramsay - the sort who take such a peculiar delight not only in inflicting death on their fellow creatures so blithely but also insist that the television audience looks on as they do it - who I wish to eradicate.

There seems to be something quite perverse about a society that considers legislation enabling the police to detain terror suspects for up to 56 days in order that the constabulary has time to come up with a reasonable justification for having said suspects taken out by trained marksmen on the platforms of our noble public transport network when men like Ramsay and Fearnley-Fucking Whitting-Cunting-Stall are free to walk the streets.

But Hugh can rile me even without the butchery. Just watching him as I did last night,fondling some hideously distorted root vegetable or other and cooing "ooh - look at my celeriac!" is enough to boil the blood. The man is seriously warped - and, no, I don't mean eccentric, I mean *warped*. Only a person of sectionable derangement would dress up in a beekeeper's outfit and go out in the middle of the night to scour the acres upon acres of lamb's lettuce he has had planted in his garden that's a quarter of the size of the Duchy of Cornwall for slugs. "Gotcha, you little pest!!" Hugh gloats before throwing his head back in silhouette against the full moon and letting out a maniacal and blood curdling laugh (...alright, I made that last bit up...) I turn off before I can find out what horrible fate is inflicted on the poor, wretched mollusc. You see - he really *will* eat anything...

Funny, isn't it? All the pomp and ceremony of the State opening of Parliament and the Queen's speech pass me by without a murmur and yet I can take one look at Hugh and want to line the whole fucking lot of them against a wall and gun the bastards down.

Why is the world so wrong??

L.U.V. on y'all,


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  1. Do you think that the sight animal slaughter on Ramsey and Feather-Knowitall's telly programmes might actually encourage veggie-ism?

    At the risk of turning into blogging enemy number one amongst the many veggie Gaurdian-reading bloggers, I'd quite happily slaughter a chicken for food if it was convenient for me to do so. I remember witnessing my grandma killing one for supper when I was a toddler so it moulded my mind on certain animals being ok as human fodder.
    You're right about the 'lazy' side of things too. Hypocritical, even. To me, a bacon roll with red sauce is heavenly and a lamb madras is mouthwatering. But would I be able to kill my pet cats for food if I were desperate? Nah, because the emotional attachment has been there for years.

    (On second thoughts, charred tabby on a bed of wild mushroom rice with a cognac-coated cherry in its gob seems strangely appealing now that I'm thinking about it...where did I put that electric kitchen knife? C'mere Pus...Daddy's got a surprise for you...).

  2. I think you should submit this to the Grauniad Bob - it's fantastic. You are right - he really will eat anything - what will it be next? Children? Tramps toe nail clippings? Baked bird poo?

  3. I must say, the soil did look rather nice, Rolex of the Molex...
    Thank you for being so sweet.

    Well, Vanskiu Boy - what can I say? Are they a deterent, as you suggest? I don't know. All I do know is that GBS spoke for me when he said, "animals are my friends, and I don't eat my friends..."

    Well, only if there's nothing else in the larder, obviously...


  4. Yes - I guess Dennis Nilsen's cupboard was bare when he decided to boil his victim's heads! Some people - you can get a packet of broken biscuits at Lidl for 10p you know - I'm sure he couldn't have been that desperate.

  5. That was the best rant I have read in a long, long time! Fantastic stuff. And yes, I have often wondered about the stability of a man who shovels up roadkill and puts it in a bap.

  6. Hugh Fea... just typing his name saps the will to live. The runty love child of Jeremy Clarkson and Gordon Ramsey.

  7. I'm sorry, Bob, I disagree. I don't eat meat either, but if I'm going to watch a TV programme about, I'd much rather see the reality of production (stun guns and slashed throats and dismembered carcasses) than a rack of lamb that magically appears from nowhere, as if Sainsbury's grew it from a little seed. And HF-W is very vociferous against factory farming.

  8. Well, Roquefort of Moquefort, we don't *all* have a Lidl on our doorsteps, you know!!

    Dor - thank you, my sweet. I'm glad someone picked it up as a genre piece, not an essay.

    BD - I'd have said there was a suspicion of Miles or Giles or Piles or whatevah his name was from the Wonder Stuff in there too - mind you, the thought of him, Ramsay and Clarkson at it like dogs is enough to turn anyone off food altogether, let alone eating meat...

    Timster -you can disagree with me to you heart's content here; this isn't Comment Macht Frei you know...