Friday, 15 February 2008

Friday Grab Bag: In the Toilet Edition

I probably shouldn't go around whipping out my digital camera in public toilets, but I had to snap a photo of that sign. It's in the men's room in Oxford's Social Science Library on Manor Road. I just love that opening line: "There have been a lot of comments about the state of these toilets." You can just imagine the exasperated shrug that accompanied it. (For the record, the bathroom seemed fine while I was in there, though it is a bit small. It reminded me of a Japanese capsule hotel.)

Just Shoot Me
Then there's this display of books at the W.H. Smith's store on Cornmarket:

Tragic Life Stories! Buy One Get One Half Price! Get all your suicidal reading at a discount! And you've gotta love those titles: "Damaged," "Shame," "Alone," "Crying in the Dark"

I'm working on a book called "In-Grown Toenail" that I hope will make me a fortune.

BritNews RoundUp
What's the first rule of bigamy? I mean, after remembering to have more than one spouse. It's to keep your lives entirely separate. It just ain't gonna work otherwise. But Randolf Edge didn't quite grasp that, according to this story in the Daily Mail: "Bigamist caught out when he invited the same guest to BOTH his 'weddings.'" Whoops. By the way, I love the name of his two wives: Patience Carey and Edna Winkle.

I once stopped at the tourist office at Bradford on Avon just to ask how many visitors confused it with Stratford-Upon-Avon. About two or three a year, they said. Perhaps those are the same people who confused Newcastle-under-Lyme with Newcastle Upon Tyne. British bureaucrats accidentally gave 2.5 million pounds to the local government of the former when it was intended for the latter. Whoops.

I don't know how else to put this: Elephants in Australia are having pre-marital sex. A 9-year-old pachyderm at the Taronga Zoo is knocked up and animal activists are upset. It is, said a critic, "the equivalent of allowing your 12-year-old daughter to become pregnant." I like the comment a reader posted: "Where is the father in all this?"

I will resist the urge to comment on the elephant's name: Thong Dee.

Speaking of animals, how about this hardhitting expose from the BBC: "Secret lives of badgers revealed." The late-night boozing! The pre-marital sex! The welfare fraud!

Andrew Cooper, producer of a new BBC documentary on the critters, said: "Before we began filming I knew that there was a gap in our knowledge about badgers. When I spoke to one badger expert, I said to him: 'How much do we know about their life underground?,' and he simply held up a blank piece of paper."

But now, thanks to the nosy BBC, the badgers have no secrets.

Gargoyle(s) of the Week
Gargoyle-on-gargoyle action!

These gargoyles--the gargoyles that dare not speak their name--adorn the side of Magdalen College. Although, on second thought, maybe that one on the left is a woman.

Have a great weekend and thanks for reading. Here's hoping your life story isn't too tragic.


Candadai Tirumalai said...

Oscar Wilde may well be the best known graduate of Magdalen College.

Fez said...

Might you consider submitting your toilet picture to: ?

This submission would be made even better by a photo of the entire note...

mark from alexandria said...

Well, this is slightly off-topic, but here goes. Its day two of my London sojourn and this may not be big o'me (making this sort of related to John's entry), but no luck in trying to contact our fearless correspondent. London is grand, as always. Happy trails to all.

SuburbanCorrespondent said...

Feeling a bit giddy on Friday, are we?

On your oft-visited topic on the decline of print journalism: I stopped by Harris Teeter the other day and spotted 2 unfortunates in the foyer who were unable to give away a single copy of the Post (I assume they were trying to sell subscriptions). People were brushing by them as if they were the crazy lady at the Bethesda Metro trying to talk to them. Panhandlers get more respect than those two did.

I confess, I didn't believe the print doomsayers until that moment.

ken said...

yeah those toilets are a mess - sometimes it's so bad in there that i just stand at the door and aim in the general direction...


Have no fear MFA. No doubt our "fearless correspondent" is off somewhere snogging, as the Brits say, during his down time.