Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Fortean Tim has been on a sabbatical of sorts..

..but is now back, if not exactly with a vengeance, then possibly a mild rebuke.

Mildly over-excitable biologists were jumping up and down like toddlers on tartrazine yesterday, as they held an international press-conference to announce that they have discovered a previously undiscovered island not previously known about by humans previously.

A panel of evident scientists from different places on the planet fielded questions from journalists, after a slightly over-long presentation fronted by Manny Spleenfeldt, the barely quiet host of  TV's sometimes watched when there is nothing else on after the pubs have shut programme, 'Hey, Nature Guy!'

It was claimed that as many as up to, over and possibly including a million 'not known about by us before we found them' species of flora and/or fauna (plants and animals to the hard of knowing.) may have to be catalogued, and possibly killed and pinned grotesquely in a cabinet, so that some slack-jawed half-wits can gather in a dusty building to gawp and point at their wizened, lifeless remains on a rainy Sunday afternoon when they've nothing better to do.

First on the panel to share their brains with us was Prof. Carrie Ouwte, of The Stu Francis Faculty of Science & Stuff, at The University of Somewhere.  She virtually had a toilet-based accident at the discovery of a new species of Lemon-flavoured Bandicoot that was thought to have been non-existent until last Thursday. 
Unfortunately, we are unable to find the space to quote from our somewhat rambling interview with Ms. Ouwte, due to her use of the adjective 'amazing' a little over 300 times in the space of 4minutes.  However, we can reveal that her final gushing assessment of the situation was,
"It's amazing!"

Martin Fahrtin was almost much more similarly coherent in his response to the discovery of a rare species of ruminant.
The animule in question appears to resemble a Fresian cow, in all but stature and habit.  The badly named 'Leaping Tree Cow' stands 'apparently' less than 8 'inches' high.
Despite this apparent handicap, it is purported to be extremely agile, springing from branch to branch in the forest canopy that seems to be it's 'alleged' home.
"It's funding on a plate!",
relished the young 'Finding out about cool stuff we didn't really know about yet.' post-graduate.

What further astounding secrets will this island paradise give up?
I don't know.
The exact location of the island in the Pacific Ocean, about 40 miles South East of the Cook Islands is being kept highly secret for now, in order to protect it's delicate ecosystem from the ravages of television documentary makers.
But rest assured, any photo or telegenic discoveries are sure to be exploited in any way possible.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

An eminent Doctor has finally come clean about a 34 year old hoax perpetrated by herself and her so-called 'husband', back in the alleged '1970's'.

Sally Aldberger, now Baroness Aldberger came up with what seemed at the time to be an almost hilarious fictional ailment after getting 'a bit squiffy' at a cocktail party in Islington.

"My husband, Dennis, had recently read an article in a respected medical journal about a complaint called ' Ukulele Armpit'.  We both thought that it sounded like a wind-up, and decided to try and go one better, as we were young, drunk and had way too much time on our hands!"

The 'spoof' story that the really quite annoying young newlyweds hatched was a supposedly serious research project into the deleterious effects of bagpipe playing.

"It was v. v. funny!", snorted Aldberger with the pointless horsey snigger of the type only the most self-righteous and arrogantly wide-headed know-it-all can muster.
"We wrote a paper,", she brayed,
"..that claimed that the continued suctional (sic) airflow of the bagpipes could actually force the player's testicles to be actually drawn up into the actual body. Actually.  In the long term, we said, this could cause not only discomfort, but actually actual infertility."


"The amazing thing is..", she unfortunately continued,
"..everyone believed us!"

So, why did they decide to own up to the frankly puerile deceit that was 'Bagpipe Testicles', a made-up falsehood of nearly amusing proportions after all these many years?

"Well, it was only after the story resurfaced at Christmas, prompting a Radio 4 charity appeal to help sufferers of 'Bagpipe Testicles', that we realised our almost funny prank may have gone a bit too far!"

We were informed that the mischievous couple recently wrote to the editors of The British Medical Journal with a formal retraction and apology for their spuriously wrong-headed false claim.

We approached the BMJ for a quotable response,
"Twats.", they said.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Border Security Protection Authority Customs Officer Police Enforcers have revealed that they discovered precisely some illegal stowaways in a lorry-shaped shipment of vegetables.

Border Agency officials became suspicious of absolutely everyone, as this is their function.  Yet one suspiciously suspicious vehicle aroused their suspicions even more than the usual run of alcoholics and smokers trying to lessen the financial burden of their vile, pathetic substance abuse addictions.
For it was, in a large Spanish-registered pantechnicon, which was stopped by an uniformed official of average length, because he believed that the driver looked 'a bit shifty', that up to and including eighteen illegal immigrants were discovered hiding in some crates of delicious, ripe crunchy salad, which would be an ideal accompaniment to some lightly grilled chicken, or perhaps warm chorizo.
Sprinkle on some ground black pepper and grated Parmesan, drizzle with olive oil and you have a tasty lunch or light supper for under a fiver!

Where were we.....?

We asked someone who knows what happened,
"What happened?"
The person who it was that answered the question that we asked him, was one Norman Gorman, an official officer of the Border Agency Office.
What happened?, is what it were that we asked Norman.
What happened, Norman?

"Well, when we inspected the lorry, we pulled out a few crates and looked in them.  This is what's known as a 'search'.
When we did that, we lifted up a few lettuces and other miscellaneous salad vegetables, and out they all fell! They were running about all over the shop!"
Norman was in a shop?
We told him that we had assumed that he had been at the ferry terminal, examining vehicles.
"Erm, that was merely a figure of speech.  What I meant was that they were trying to run away in many different directions."

We thanked Mr. Gorman for his clarification, and suggested that in future he might confine his attention to the matter at hand, and refrain from resorting to colloquialisms and other non-standard forms of English usage and just get to the ruddy point!

"Right you are.  We eventually rounded them up, and discovered that they had been hiding on the inside of an hollowed out cucumber, for up to, yet not exceeding thirty-eight hours!"

How can eighteen immigrants fit inside a cucumber?, we asked.
Was the cucumber very large?', we also asked.
If so, did said cucumber contravene European Union regulations on the size and bendiness of produce?, we continued to ask, until Norman replied,
"It was a normal sized cucumber."

Norman continued speaking from his face,
"They didn't have passports, visas or even any form of identity-style documentation, so we don't know who they are, or from where it is from that they originate.  From."

That's as maybe, we actually said back at him, but we still couldn't get our brains round the alleged 'fact' that there were eighteen of them concealed in a cucumber.  We were fairly sure that we would require further evidence.
"Oh, we took photos!", professed Mr. Gorman.

He showed us the photographic evidence in question.
Unfortunately, all suddenly began to come clear.
We pointed out to Norman Gorman that he appeared to be holding a snapshot of a bunch of cockroaches.
"Yes.", he agreed.
"But not a single one of them had a passport!  We can't have all these foreign insects coming over here and doing our honest British vermin out of a job, I mean, where will it end?"

Mr. Madman then thrust a picture of a bunch of bananas under our noses.
"See that?", he ranted.
We strained to make out the image of a small spider, cowering in the shadows, no doubt traumatised by his long and arduous journey.  Possibly frightened, confused, fleeing from who knows what oppressive regime?
We were aroused from our well of maudlin pity by Mr. Gormless, spouting,
"These bloody foreign spiders!  They come over here, stealing the flies from under the noses of honest-to-goodness British spiders!"

We had to stop Mr. Moron there, as when we asked whether, actually, do spiders have noses?, he started to have convulsions and could only be sedated by repeatedly beating himself about the head with a rolled up copy of The Daily Mail.

We asked Ken Libido of the Road Haulage Association whether he thought that the port authorities were being over-zealous?
"I think that the port authorities are being over-zealous.", he said.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Literally two residents of the village of Simpleton in Lincolnshire have blamed the destruction of a wooden-type fence structure bordering their lovely home on U.F.O.s.

Madge and Billy Clement, both of different ages over or about sixty-seven, claim that on or around nearly the 35th of December 2008 as they were returning home in the evening after a hard day's blocking shop doorways and bothering teenagers in the nearly local town of Nuttleigh, they saw inexplicable lights in the darkness.
Almost three other people also reported seeing moving lights on the same evening.

On arising the following morning, the Clements were disturbed to find that the fence next to their property was,
"All busted up.", as Mr Clement so eloquently put it.
"It was those U.F.O.s what done it!', piped up Mrs. Clement.
"Must have been, for definite! There's no other possible explanation!"

Did Mrs. Madge Clement have any concrete evidence to support her assertions?  What were the strange lights what it was that they had seen only just the very evening before their fence went all broke?

"They came down the hill there in pairs, quite low to the ground.  They were white.  It was a bit misty, but I could see them in a long trailing formation, one behind the other.  We didn't see until they'd gone past, but inbetween there were also pairs of red lights keeping in perfect formation, following exactly the contours of the main road.
They're always 'buzzing' us round here.  I can't understand why extraterrestrials would be interested in this area anyhow, I mean, It's the arse-end of nowhere!"

How can Mrs. Clement be sure that this event is of extraterrestrial origin?

"Well, Billy (Mr. Clement.) suggested that the lights might be the moon reflected off puddles or something, but the thing is, every now and then there would be an extra flashing light of an orange hue, and one of the U.F.O.s would break formation and go off in a different direction."

So, what's that got to do with their garden fence?

"Well.  We have discussed the matter at great length and dismissed all explanations that seem unlikely or boring, so the only possible cause we could come up with was that a U.F.O. crashed into our fence and bust it."

The Ministry Of Defence declined to comment,
and so shall we.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

A man in Oxford, which by happy coincidence is situated in Oxfordshire has told the 'News reporting community' that he has plans to sue God for the infringement of his intellectual property rights.

Walter Cymbeline, an amateur inventor of things, aged 57, told the news folk that the almighty has been stealing his designs and then fraudulently passing them off as his own.
Was Cymbeline able to provide any examples with which to prove his case?
"I should say so!  I've got drawers full of 'em! Look at this one for starters."
Cymbeline then produced an highly detailed blueprint.  After an awkward silence, our guest reporter Kate L. Prodde of 'The Daily Week' piped up,
"'s a tree."
"I know it is!" retorted Cymbeline,
"Because I invented it!!"

Ms. Prodde went on to point out that the date on the blueprint said ©W.Cymbeline 1973.  Surely trees have existed for millions of years?
"Yes, you see? That's the same specious argument that the Patent Office tried to palm me off with!" ranted Cymbeline.
"The trouble is that God is omnipotent and omnipresent and all that metaphysical stuff.
What I reckon he did was look over my shoulder while I was designing my tree, copied it, and then went back in time and then passed it off as his own work!
When faced with those infinite powers, a mere mortal such as myself is at an automatic disadvantage. It's just not fair.  I shall be pressing the Government to introduce some sort of legislation to protect inventors from the frankly unfair business practices of non corporeal deities."

Is it not true though, that......



"That's another of mine he pinched!  I go and invent crabs, and then what does he go and do? The next thing you know, he goes and makes them millions of years earlier using my designs! It's a bloody cheek, I can tell you.  It's sheer plagiarism of the lowest order.  I'm absolutely fuming!"

Mr. Cymbeline then proceeded to roll his eyeballs in a quite alarming manner, while frothing slightly at the mouth and demanding backdated royalty payments for the air we were breathing.
We would like to thank Mr. Cymbeline for his candid interview and wish him the best of luck in his new secure accommodation.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Hello, Fortean Tim here.
Our publisher, Blazing Heretic would like to apologise to all of our reader, or if there are indeed more than one of you, readers, for the extended hiatus of service over the festive period.
This is because of the unfortunate fact that Mr. Heretic has recently fallen victim to the current financial climate, in so far as he worked for Woolworths as well as producing the wonderful pool of weird and wonderful insight and knowledge that is Fortean Tim!

But fear not!
While dear old Woolies may be literally on the scrap heap, our humble offering of strange news from the realm of the absurd shall continue unabated!
Look out for the new posting that is almost certainly nearly virtually imminent, shortly.

A Happy New Year To One And All!  (Except that shifty looking bloke in the corner.......)