Friday, August 8, 2008

Manchester Perry Boys and Nonsense

The towers of Salford and the keys to the sandy kingdom wherein dwell the psychedelic kangaroo and the tamarind seed. Is there anybody going to listen to my story all about the girl who came to stay...? You don't regret a single day, y'know?

I thought not...

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Mad Dogfish: The Ones that Got Away

My second book, "Mad Dogfish: The Ones that Got Away" is currently being finished/edited. The book, which I like to describe as "Perry Boys on Steroids" is concerned with the mid-70s to the present day (2008-9) and covers music, fashion, football, crime, drugs, and travel - with emphasis on the travel.
The book is a tribute to those who took the plunge and travelled to alien shores, with or without a Lonely Planet guide, or a companion, or a pot to piss in. Staying on the move, kipping in sleazy motels, swimming in exotic oceans, wrecking French cities with the Red Army, and steaming about the American Interstate system, all these things are covered, as well as grafting in Mexico, painting millionaires' homes on Martha's Vineyard, and doing the blacktop game with the gypsies and mad Scots in Florida and Georgia.
Thailand, snides, Australian grafting, Germany, etc (thanks to my good friend Kenneth Lewis and his mad mates, Dominic Lavin, et al) all these countries and topics are covered...I can't wait to get this thing finished and out there.
And of course, the whole thing wouldn't be right without at least 80 pages dedicated to the evolution of the "casual" movement, and its rudimentary beginnings in Saint Etienne back in 1977.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Crystal Branches Everywhere...

Well, it's winter, innit, again? The snow is falling and the trees are sheathed in knobbly ice as is my car - not good. This is hell. Or is it? The fisher cats (weasels, really, not cats) are patrolling, looking for real cats to eat, and I've seen four foxes in the last several weeks. Foxes are nice little things, and cats can put up a decent fight against them, thank goodness. But it's the shrill sounds, the piercing bizarre utterances from the mouths of the fishers that really gets my goat. If I had a goat it might well get it, get it? The deck outside is covered in snow, and the football has been whited-out where it stands. Must be a god few inches out there. The cats won't go out, will not wear it. So where does this leave me?
It leaves me pondering over the tackle that broke Eduardo's leg yesterday, and the fall that tore my mother's ligaments on Thursday. I sit and add bits to my next book, and hope it gets published, or I'll publish it myself, and then I drink a cup of rosy lee with the missus. Go for an Eartha Kitt, that's right, lay a few Henry the Thirds in the ol' bag 'n' boil it. Up the apples and pears for a Tom Tit. The fact is, we utterly pasted the Geordies last night and the ICJ nicked the Tyne Bridge to weigh it in for beer money, but somehow all I see is Eduardo, and Gallas, kicking the hoardings like a third-rate Cantona, before collapsing in the middle of the park and sobbing like a fucking loon.
Bloody ridiculous, that, wannit? A grown man, crying like a girlie boy, like a big pantie-girdle. Get back to France, pantie man. In England we are men. Those of us that are actually English, and the other 99.9%. An Englishman's home is his Adi Dassle, knowhatImean? The Tyne Bridge was dismantled early this morning in a bus depot outside somewhere horrid, and flogged to a herd of gyppos who came through in a caravan train, like post-industrial pioneers across a pre-Mad Max landscape. They've got it sussed, the ol' Romani. Nick and buy and sell and glean and scrape and keep on moving, do not stop. Buy a Roller with the dosh, a slightly bigger caravan, have bare-knuckle fights and wreck pubs in moody areas after funerals. Show The Man who's boss, and all that. Copper pipes, tarmac, fortune-telling, good ol' fashioned graft, bicycle thieving, Ufology, Crown Green Bowls, Church Institute cloakrooms, old red phoneboxes, aeroplanes to Spain to smuggle ciggies back, the full Montezuma.

SO there you 'ave it.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Is Manchester Britain's Second City, or is it Just A Shithole?

All my life I, Ian Hough have championed the virtues of Manchester, my home town. People have been telling me that I should work in public relations for the place, such has been my enthusiasm for transmitting its might and elegance to "foreigners" who haven't yet worked out how cool it/we is/are. Out here we is stoned, man-dudes, k? The previous sentence was a cruel sarcasm, based on recent experiences I have had with some of the Mancunians (that's what they call people from Manchester). They have accused me of being "middle class"! Devastating! They have called me a "Bury lad"! Arrgghh!! And most of all they have drawn very definite lines in the sand as to what is "proper" or "real" Manchester, and what is Salford (a neighbouring city which was there for a very very long time before the Romans came and built Manchester), and what is "my" Bury, and other things besides.
In my first book, "Perry Boys", I push Manchester as the second city of Britain, and I took the mickey out of the cockneys in a playful chapter entitled "Cockney Kryptonite". But when I did the same to United fans from Manchester in a recent edition of United We Stand fanzine, it seems the Albert Tatlock spirit is alive and well in the city, and a sense of humour has somehow dissolved like the statues in the acid rain I know and love.
Britain's Second City? All my life I have pushed this idea of Manchester and wanted to make it true, but now I am rethinking everything; third city? Fourth City? You tell me, my penguins of the crystal desert. You tell me...