Bloodthirsty Seagulls

I honestly don’t know what to think. I don’t know how to feel. I don’t know what to do…I just…I don’t know. 

I truly believe we are witnessing something huge, a seismic shift into a re-ordered food-chain, and yet still no one is talking about it, no one cares. Then again maybe I am the only one who sees it, perhaps I am the only one not jacked into the Matrix, and everyone else is just waltzing through life watching Game of Thrones and eating various types of sandwiches, oblivious to the darkness that is slowly seeping into our rosy top of the food chain lives…

Who+the+suspense+is+killing+me+_1567f0f11862b40.gif

DON’T YOU SEE IT, HUH?! DON’T YOU?! GAAD YOU’RE BLIND. LOOK OUT THE WINDOW AND HEAR THE BLOODCURDLING CRIES!

Seagulls are taking over. They are everywhere, not just the sea – in fact let’s change their names to Everywheregulls, it would make more sense. A little bit of a mouthful, but still.

With every passing day they rise further and further, gaining numbers and strength, and before you know it they will infiltrate your perfect little Dairylea Dunker life…it won’t be long before it’s all be over.

They have wings, there’s advantage one. We don’t have wings, so that’s our disadvantage…err one. Also they have beaks. Yes I have a large nose, that is jokingly referred to as a beak by hurtful people who were never loved as children – but the truth is it is not an actual beak so would not be much use in combat. That’s 2-0 for Team Seagull. And I know what you’re (probably not) thinking, but even if I could fashion some sort of beak-looking thing out of bits of cardboard and tin foil they would outnumber me massively. Also they get to publicly defecate on people’s heads with little to no repercussion. It is highly frowned upon for humans to do this.

dont-go.gif

Basically it’s all over, we had a good run I guess. But it’s all over.

Ever since my return to the UK I have realised only one thing. Actually no two – the first one is that British bacon is just the best in the world, and my goodness do I enjoy that lovely goodness. Preferably in a Greggs stottie bun along with HP brown sauce. Heaven on earth. Ahh, it’s just so great.

Sorry – getting distracted from serious things due to bacon, as per usual. But the second is that there has been a horrible adjustment to life as I used to know it…seagulls have inflitrated where they once did not wander, and we find ourselves in a sort of Planet of the Seagulls type of grim situation. Don’t dare steal that name Hollywood, because if we survive this I will be making that movie.

Why do you people always want explanations?! Can’t you just believe whatever I am saying without any sort of…fine. Well just this past week I have witnessed first hand two things which emphasise my point:  firstly I was held hostage in my own home by a crazed dive-bombing family of seagulls, and then just a few days later I witnessed a savage seagull ripping into a pigeon – feasting on its innards, and then… and then it laughed and was all “hahaha, what are you going to do John, huh? Fucking nothing you worthless little human. Run home. Fucking run home.” 

giphy.gif

Just joking. He was eating the pigeon’s face, not the innards.

Now call me a stickler for the facts, or maybe even a person who overreacts at any given thing – but…seagulls…they are supposed to be close to the sea doing sea-related things, like stealing ice cream cones and shitting all over public landmarks. Not hanging out in a terraced street terrorising the locals, or enjoying an all you can gobble pigeon buffet outside a Tesco Express. So this suggests that they are looking to change the status quo. They want a shake up. And as we slowly but surely move into the future predicted in WALL-E they will easily be able to achieve their goal.

Please join with me in my resistance. And bring sponges please, my windows are a horrific sight at the moment.

www.facebook.com/storytimewithjohn

www.youtube.com/storytimewithjohn101

Please buy my collection of stories! Get it in paperback here – or on Kindle here! ALL proceeds go towards Macmillan Cancer Support!

FUCK SELFIES!

I feel like such a grumpy old man for saying this…but I still hate the whole selfie thing.

Not just like taking a photograph of you and your ice cream (or whatever) and then sending it to your friend all: “haha – you don’t have a fucking ice cream, and I do!” – because of course, that is fantastic and I would never want to deprive anyone of such a perverse pleasure…

I’m not even talking about getting a quick snap of you and your friends together to mark some kind of occasion…actually you know what I have no problem with the selfie in itself at all…

But what I do have an issue with is the non-stop: KA-CHURR! … KA-CHURR! … KA-CHURR! 

Selfie GIF

(That was supposed to be the camera sound on phones by the way; was a difficult one to recreate phonetically!)

You see I’m sitting here in Starbucks – probably (definitely) drank too much coffee, but this person is sitting next to me taking photos at every angle – and has been doing so for over half an hour now. This cafe has basically became her own personal photo-shoot: but why? JUST WHY?! 

I’m trying to see if there is anything special going on…she hasn’t even got one of the festive drinks – you know, the ‘Returning Favorite: Toffee Nut Latte’, perhaps I could understand the Christmas-time excitement in that case – why you would need 3,000 photographs of the same thing is beyond me, but still…actually wait – she hasn’t even bought anything! I thought for a second she may be taking photos of the new red cup – that would make sense it has been somewhat of a fiasco as of late…but NO! She has a carton of chocolate milkshake – which looks great and everything, but what…where have you pulled that from?! Who are you?! (and why aren’t you sharing? Man, it seriously looks delicious).

HUh GIF

The thing is, in Korea the selfie is king. There’s none of the shame surrounding it which I remember back home in England. I always thought that if you were by yourself taking photos of yourself in public non-stop, people would possibly (and quite rightly) – look at you as shallow, self-obsessed and well…entirely narcissistic. Here in SK that is still true, but because of the huge importance looks hold in this plastic surgery obsessed society, it is not considered to be a negative at all…so I am somewhat of a miserable island here, complaining all by myself to anyone who will listen (which is next to no one).

Ah phew, she’s left…rant over – and she didn’t even leave me any of the milkshake…what a so and so!

But what do you think about this: am I spot on or just a grumpy owld geezer who needs to get with the times? Lemme know…

www.facebook.com/storytimewithjohn

www.youtube.com/storytimewithjohn101

Please buy my collection of stories! Get it in paperback here – or on Kindle here! ALL proceeds go towards Macmillan Cancer Support!

Elderly Children

The other day I laughed like I haven’t done in months…and it wasn’t from a well-crafted and intelligent political barb either, or an amusing satirical comment on Western society’s culture – or anything else that demands some level of brain activity to “get” – noit was a lot more simple and pure than all of that, but not any less meaningful. Well, maybe a little…

Anyway it was undoubtedly something silly; and it came about by me walking into a classroom, and coming across a rather strange sight – a small hunched character who couldn’t have been more than five or six years old. It was one of those moments where it takes a few seconds to take it all in and process…

Huh GIF

You see this kid had pushed his shoulders up, and his head down – basically eliminating his whole neck…making him look vaguely reminiscent of  both Frankenstein’s monster and a penguin with a spinal problem at the same time. To keep the shoulders in shape he was forced to waddle as he walked to maintain composure…and felt it was necessary to emit a few R2-D2 style “BOOP-BAP-BEEP”s every now and again, which (thanks to his missing front teeth) had an eerie and creepy sound to them…this was all probably necessary though,  just to remind people he was still there circling the table.

I also noted that he would occasionally outstretch his right hand slightly as if reaching for an imaginary walking stick which he had sadly misplaced…which led me to believe this was perhaps an older Frankenstein’s monster penguin model. But that was of course an assumption I am still yet to verify. Either way I felt in my heart of hearts that if I had some spare teeth lying around I wouldn’t hesitate to offer them to this bizarre yet amusing creature, he was just trying to live dammit – and seemed like a pretty nice guy.

Friend GIF

There was just something about the whole spectacle which made me burst out laughing, and as he inevitably began to giggle too the shoulders began to droop slowly but surely…and the beeps turned into baaps, and the baaps quickly turned into “ba-ha-ha-ha”s. Before I knew it we were both in hysterics with laughter, and so the rest of the kids in the class took the baton: copying the same character, busily circling the table with their now neckless bodies.

Such little weirdos, seriously!

But it made me think though…where do we lose this? And when…and WHY?! Because I know I still behave like this – but I’m seen largely as stupid, childish, or immature (there are other words but it’s a family show). However I do feel like if we were all a little more like this, just having fun and amusing both ourselves and each other…then life would be that little bit more enjoyable. In other words if the elderly had as much of a laugh imitating children as these kids had imitating the elderly then this world would be a lot less dreary.

Old Lady GIF

All I know is I’m writing a mental note to do the Frankenstein’s monster penguin shuffle at age 93. Don’t let me forget…okay? Even if I scream at you to get off my lawn and begin a rant about “kids these days”…make me do it.

www.facebook.com/storytimewithjohn

www.youtube.com/storytimewithjohn101

Please buy my collection of stories! Get it in paperback here – or on Kindle here! ALL proceeds go towards Macmillan Cancer Support!

Denzel Washington LOVES Christmas!

Sometimes you need to stand up for what is right…sometimes you need to stand up against those which make this world of ours a more negative and grim place to be – and in those moments you must take a leaf out of Denzel Washington’s book and deliver a stirring speech. One of those moments came today, when I was told Christmas is only for six year olds…

Spread the good word!

Oh, and if you have a video request you can leave a comment, or send me an email – if it’s a cool/interesting idea then I will get to it as soon as I can!

www.facebook.com/storytimewithjohn

www.youtube.com/storytimewithjohn101

Please buy my collection of stories! Get it in paperback here – or on Kindle here! ALL proceeds go towards Macmillan Cancer Support!

Failure = Bacon

It seems more and more common in this day and age to force ourselves to do things which we know to be uncomfortable, or in some cases totally impossible…

We sign up for classes in which you actually pay money to jump up and down until you feel like your intestines are about to fall out…we buy books and download language apps – promising ourselves we will be fluent in French, Chinese, and Elvish in one year…we say we’ll never drink again: but the thing is this kind of talk is as far from reality as Legolas himself – it’s a complete fantasy land, or at the most too much of a pain in the arse to ever be worth it. But it’s this whole “no pain, no gain” mentality that pushes us on, as if it only really counts as an achievement or a success in the end if you suffered, cried, and almost died to get it. But why is that? Why do we have to have a horrible time for it to be something worthwhile – what ever happened to just enjoying life?

Hate my Life GIF

I’m rambling, I know, I know. I’m just upset because amidst the Halloween celebrations on the weekend I overdid it and spent an absolutely monstrous amount of money…and I’ve being hating myself ever since because I was trying to force myself to save money for next year’s travel budget. I was planning on living like a monk – very minimalist; perhaps I would treat myself to a sprinkle of salt over plain uncooked rice every now and again – but aside from that it would be a rather grim and unexciting existence, days spent staring at blank walls to avoid being suckered into buying things, refusing to listen to music in case Jay Z convinces me to splash out where I know I shouldn’t.

But apparently when I dress up as a vampire I become an entirely different person, like a Jekyll and Hyde transformation…and suddenly I’m buying people I don’t like drinks, and announcing it’s no big deal that guys have to pay double the amount that girls do into clubs (I mean, what?! Why?!) I almost had a heart attack the next day looking at my bank balance – and then ate some bacon to make myself feel better, so a real one may be coming any day now…that’s not a lofty target, that’s just science unfortunately.

Bacon Cloud GIF

I need to set realistic goals, as does everyone else – making huge claims and promises are all well and good…but normally you’re never going to meet a finish line which you have placed a million miles away, it’s just not going to happen. So I’m rethinking my savings forecast and being a little more lenient, allowing for splurges here and there…whenever Count Drac decides to surface for large pizzas, imported ales, and tequila shots: hate and love that guy. In the meantime I will try and take on a little more work to make up the difference financially, after all it is true that most good things don’t come easy, but all work and no play makes Jonny and Drac very dull boys indeed.

To put it simply: pain and barely any gain – just make a person insane; so don’t be so hard on yourself.

www.facebook.com/storytimewithjohn

www.youtube.com/storytimewithjohn101

Please buy my collection of stories! Get it in paperback here – or on Kindle here! ALL proceeds go towards Macmillan Cancer Support!

How to NOT do Halloween Make-Up!

So I tried to follow one of those ‘How To Do Halloween Make-Up!’ things…and well, it didn’t work out great…it wasn’t as easy as they tried to make it seem – BELIEVE ME! Check this out for proof, I’m sorry in advance…

Oh, and if you have a video request you can leave a comment, or send me an email – if it’s a cool/interesting idea then I will get to it as soon as I can!

www.facebook.com/storytimewithjohn

www.youtube.com/storytimewithjohn101

Please buy my collection of stories! Get it in paperback here – or on Kindle here! ALL proceeds go towards Macmillan Cancer Support!

Tokyo Tantrums

Japan ~ Tokyo – 2015

Tokyo has a big city sort of reputation to it, an air of grandeur accompanied with a sense of mystery somewhere within the non-stop luminous glare of the lights and the 24/7 rush…

So many films have painted a picture that has made an impression on me, and because of this it was high on the list of places I wanted to see…so when I realised I had a long weekend coming up I didn’t hesitate and booked it up straight away! Just a couple of hours to get from my home in Korea to the unknown world beyond – armed with nothing but a friend’s recommendations (which proved invaluable) and a feeling I was soon to be in my very own Lost in Translation remake…

Lost Trans GIF

Sidenote: when travelling you really do need to think long and hard about who you will actually travel with. Well maybe not too thorough – nothing too ridiculous, but at the very least you need to see a clean bill of health (both physical and mental), a criminal background check, and dental records. Also check their voice and typical conversation topics as otherwise you may be locked in with the most boring groaner on the planet – which is never going to be fun. With this particular adventure I was meaning to go alone originally, and then at the last minute a lady friend of mine tagged along…which brought some erm, shall we say – complications? 

Anyway I mean this sincerely when I say that Tokyo is a marvel. So much to see and do, a far cry from the more reserved and traditional parts of Japan I had visited earlier in the year.  But oddly I found it manages to retain a fantastic balance between the two often conflicting sides; you see one second I’d be staring up at a 60 foot tall science fiction juggernaut in the form of the powerful Gundam, the next I was wearing a traditional yukata and relaxing in an onsen…then I’d blink and be back to the mad rush of the Shibuya scramble crossing! I was completely in my element, roving around searching for the weird and wonderful, straining my neck to try and see as much as I possibly could…it was everything I had dreamed about for so long, and so much more…

Shibuya GIF

But yeah: the ghost at the feast…the wasp at the picnic…the drunk and slightly creepy uncle at the family reunion. Hmm, that last one was a bit weird, but you get my point – this is the part of the story where I say what didn’t go so smoothly, and most of it had to do with my travel companion: hence my warning earlier. You see I try my utmost to remain as friendly and light hearted as possible during trips, as from experience I understand that it can be a pretty stressful period if you let the small things seep in and truly affect you…if you do that suddenly the foul smell of a certain street, the incessant honking of horns on the road, or perhaps even your friend’s breathing can have you suddenly enraged beyond all comprehension: like smashing an axe into a locked door screaming “heeeeere’s Johnny!”  sort of level rage. So it’s best to take a deep breath instead, and just let most hiccups roll off your back…

However, my lady friend didn’t share this ethos…which meant that any small thing became the reason for a monumental day-ruining mood. Juxtapose that dark rain cloud along with my attempted cheery sense of humour and you had quite a pairing; something like if Voldemort was to meet one of the Teletubbies. Well actually that’s unfair (to he who must not be named): it would only be like that if Voldemort had the emotional range to both grimace and groan about public transport, and literally burst into tears about the levels of salt in Japanese food…as it stands I don’t think he is quite on her level yet.

I can understand the frustration though, Tokyo is huge and it’s far too easy to become dazed and confused by the sprawling subway system: which I honestly think was designed by someone throwing spaghetti at the wall, and saying: “that’ll do just fine.” We took many wrong turns during our days there, and the hours were long and well travelled…but I don’t see how it helps remaining silent or dragging your feet along as if you are a pathetically non-threatening zombie, or almost defunct robot:

Robot GIF

There is an answer to such problems though, and one which I will gladly share with all of you…and that is; beer. Yes, you heard it here first! The golden elixir is the perfect remedy to all sorts of ailments, including the frustration you may feel when a friend (or something more) is becoming more than you can bear. Thankfully there was a so-called “English pub” just off a side street near to the Shibuya crossing…where for three times the normal price I could enjoy beer, ales, and all that good stuff as if I was back amongst the smoke and laughing guffaws of my homeland…“Wait, it’s how much?! Jesus tap-dancing Christ!? It’s not worth that!”

But yeah, that’s how things go! Ups and downs, smiles and frowns…you have to take the good with the bad, and try to carve out memories that will last: and despite all the issues we were still able to do that…pretty much.

However I must now look for an AA meeting in South Korea: so yeah, wish me luck. 

www.facebook.com/storytimewithjohn

www.youtube.com/storytimewithjohn101

Please buy my collection of stories! Get it in paperback here – or on Kindle here! ALL proceeds go towards Macmillan Cancer Support!