Wednesday 30 April 2014

Flaxen’s Frolicking Ferreting Fun

                                               'Keep still, keep very still'

When not crushing skulls of my fallen enemy and carousing, I'm often out and about exercising my ferret, Felix. Ferrets make great pets and combine the enviable qualities of cuteness and extreme viciousness within one lithe, sinuous frame. Even Eingar, my faithful Wolf, and most steadfast of companions, doth baulk when Felix enters the Great Hall. Good boy, Eingar! Ferrets know no fear and are ideal for removing sundry rodents which collect in and around the midden pit. Whilst in my cups I have been known to place Felix down my breeches as a test of bravado and folly. The secret is to keep very still and not to get too excited. Ferrets are primed to react to sudden movement and Mustelidae recreation is best left to times when amorous thoughts are kept to a minimum. By a lucky stroke of fate, my ability to sustain an erection during inebriation waneth mightily and therefore I'm saved from an otherwise sound and undoubtedly well-deserved unmanning.    

Sunday 27 April 2014

Kim Jong-Un is a Cunt

                       Does this uniform make my head look fat?

What can I say, this cunt's dynasty is enough to give nepotism a bad name. He's a fat, ugly slope with a dodgy haircut. In fact the glorious North Koreans leader’s haircut is a stunning tribute to his Stalinist regime. It has minimal style and yet remains vaguely functional. Surely we can’t argue with a man who received 100% of the votes in the election. Now that is what I call democracy in action.

Hannibal Barca

                                           'Hannibal ad portos'

I don’t think Hannibal (Chenu Bechala- ‘Beloved of Baal’) is a ‘good’ general I consider him a great general; Xanthippus was a ‘good’ general. Mayhap you consider Alexander ‘The Great’ the greatest general in antiquity, but I disagree. ‘But most illustrious and perfectly formed Flaxen’, you say. ‘Hannibal was ultimately defeated by Scipio Africanus at the battle of Zama in 202 BC.  Surely the man who defeated him must be greater than the one he defeated.  But this would represent a superficial analysis indeed. Listen to my analysis and weep.

Alexander was a bold tactician and exhibited a breathtaking and singular strategic vision. He was also rash and on occasion exceedingly lucky. Furthermore, as Macedonian king, he had complete control over the direction of the war and could bear resources in both men and finances, according to his will. The Persian Empire and the system of Satrapies were in a state of decline and rife with dissension.  A bold adventurer had only to kick in the portal and watch the rotten edifice collapse. After three decisive battles the Persians and Medes were defeated conclusively. Alexander never lost a battle and is rightly considered as the greatest of all the ancient captains, bar one. However, to truly judge a man as a general we can’t totally rely on what we observe after victory. How a general deals with defeat is the defining characteristic of greatness. Arse.

Hannibal at the start of the second Punic war was faced with numerous problems. A lesser general would have waited for the Romans to invade Spain and fight the battles on his own soil. This would cede the initiative to the Romans who were also preparing to invade Northern Africa and eventually Carthage via Sicily. Hannibal did something completely unexpected. He invaded Italy by land and embraced all the hardships that this entailed.

When he debouched in Northern Italy he took the Romans completely off guard. They were so alarmed that the consular army destined for Sicily was rerouted to engage Hannibal in Italy. After passage through the Alps Hannibal’s army of Iberian mercenaries and Africans quickly obtained a victory over Roman forces on the Ticinus. Before the engagement, Hannibal had a total of 26,000 men. The fruits of victory were swift. Great numbers of vacillating Gallic warriors came over to Hannibal’s standard and filled the ranks of his depleted army. Hannibal went on to inflict three further great defeats upon the Romans, culminating in the masterly battle of Cannae (216 BC). Hannibal realised that he couldn’t achieve total victory over the Romans by defeating them in the field. Battles of attrition were a means to a political end. He needed to break up the Roman confederation and thus deprive Rome of its greatest asset: a virtually unlimited supply of men. It is to be recalled that during the war the Romans raised 750,000 troops of which Hannibal killed 300,000.

Carthage ultimately failed Hannibal. They kept him chronically deprived of money and more importantly, men. They lacked the strategic vision of Hannibal and squandered resources in fruitless expeditions in Sicily and elsewhere. They failed to support their brilliant general in the only strategic theatre that actually mattered. In spite of his many disadvantages, Hannibal managed to maintain his army on hostile territory against a formidable foe for 14 years. The Romans were no Persians. This is why Hannibal deserves the first position amongst the ancients.

The historical consequence of Hannibal’s defeat was that Western civilisation was subsequently based on rugged Indo-European Rome rather than lush Semitic Carthage. Hannibal’s enterprise was doomed before it started and the battle of Zama had been lost centuries before it was fought.         

Friday 25 April 2014

Today is ANZAC Day

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

For the Fallen

For those who fought and died,
Will always in our hearts abide.
And sorrow's constant and vigilant bill,
The cost of freedom's bitter pill.
So bang the drum and bugles note,
Eternal watch for foe doth gloat.
And raise the sword and don the helm,

For strife and death is life’s cruel and steadfast game.

Sunday 20 April 2014

Of Mice and Men

                 It's 'S' you daft bugger, not 'F'. And folk wonder why I want to burn stuff

What about the intrinsic beauty of a Shakespeare sonnet or the emotional power of John Steinbeck’s gritty prose. Tis not knowledge, you say, and for once I have to agree. Smart bugger that David Hume, but a bit of a fat bastard. Still, he certainly had a way with words.  Can't spell for fuck though.

Friday 18 April 2014

"The King is Dead, Long Live the King"

                                        "Elvis has left the mental health ward"

There are some folk who think that Elvis died in 1976 on a toilet seat. Some say he was abducted by aliens, and as I write, is being extensively, anally probed. Thirty eight years of anal probing may seem excessive, but a life time diet of fried peanut butter and banana butties have left their mark. The aliens will need access to industrial strength lasers to carve a path through decades of impacted faecal matter. No matter, aliens who have mastered intergalactic travel will have no problem developing such sophisticated anal probing technologies. So, not to worry then: Elvis is in good hands.

On a banal note. When I lived in Tipton, West Midlands, there was a chap who worked in the local fish and chip shop who claimed he was Elvis. He couldn't sing for shit but he could batter and deep fry a snickers bar in double fast time. Thank you very much.  

Sunday 13 April 2014

Happy Eastre Tide!

                                           Bunnies taste nice if you get them young enough.

Tis almost Easter everyone! Get out your eggs and salute the Easter bunny. What is that you say? Easter is about celebrating the resurrection of a man/god after he was rightfully nailed to a piece of wood for being a malefactor. But men can’t come back from the dead- that would be a miracle. A temporary suspension of natural law, how can that happen? You say, an invisible god, by unknown means can do anything, even if it violates all that we know to be true and hold most dear to our intellectual bosom.  I say, go tell it to David Hume.

Anyway, I celebrate the festival of the dawn/spring by sacrificing a gypo in the midden pit. Eastre, a goddess from the Teutonic pantheon is forever fecund and brimming with ova. That bint has nipples you could hang your hat on, apparently.


Friday 11 April 2014

Fuck, must eat more greens.


My physic says I should cut down on the mead, decrease my intake of fatty red meats and increase my carbs. I should indulge in strenuous cardiovascular exercise for at least 30 minutes, three times a week. Sound medical advice, I’m sure. He also prescribed a weekly bloodletting and a daily sacrifice of a cockerel to Thunnor. Also, he advised that I rein in my naked lust when it comes to ‘dirty’ Jutish wenches. He says that my member will burn and itch somewhat awful. My physic is the best in the land and is undoubtedly a wise man, at least amongst us untutored, rude barbarians. I did say that the itching and burning I can live with, tis the nagging I can’t abide.

He has a constant regime of fasting and a total abstinence of lewd women. He peels the skin off his boiled chicken before feasting and eats much fruit and root vegetable.

Anyway, I did point out that the median survival time for an Anglo-Saxon man in 9th century England was 25. He laughed so, and proffered his age at just 25 summers.  I explained that life is inherently pointless, futile and full of pain. He was about to come up with a sage and witty rejoinder when I terminated the discussion by stabbing him betwixt his vitals with my trusty sword, ‘Arse, big fat arse, biter.’ Where is thy wisdom now, physic? For those who ponder life’s sad conundrums, the irony will not be lost. 

Thursday 10 April 2014

Eingar Hates Gay Courtesans

                                                  The Class of 836 AD

Shit, Harold 'The Herald' couldn't take a decent photo if his life depended on it. Where is the definition? Where are the rich tones and resolution? That's the last time I let him take the annual 'War Band' photo. Can you pick me out? I'm in the front rank, of course, next to Earic and left of centre of Cynefrid. Eingar, my fathful wolf cuts a dash to the left. Good boy, Eingar! Seconds later he cocks his leg against Theobald 'The Thegn' and urinates according to his wont. That'll teach Theobald to dress up as a gay courtesan of the Belgium renaissance.  

Saturday 5 April 2014

Flaxen Likes Tanks

Only Tanks and Women Make Me Hard

Here we have the two most iconic tanks of the the Second World War, side by side, in all their feral, atavistic splendour. In the left corner, we have the Russian T34, arguably the machine which saved the Soviets from total annihilation by the mighty Wehrmacht. On the right, we have the redoubtable Tiger. Even rumours of a single Tiger present on the battlefield could send shivers of cold terror down the spine of any allied tank man.

So which was the better tank.....

On a simple visual inspection there are obvious differences. The T34 is squat and has distinctive sloped armour, especially the front glacis. The Tiger is a larger machine and slab faced.

The T34 was the first modern tank. Many of its innovative features are present in all front line battle tanks of today. The sloped glacis not only deflected high velocity shot but also effectively increased relative armour thickness without additional weight penalty. The Christie suspension enabled the T34 to travel fast on uneven ground without rattling its inhabitants to pieces. The 76mm high velocity gun served as a serviceable anti-tank weapon and could also deliver a respectable high explosive shell. It was fast, mechanically reliable and operated well in the harsh Russian climate. On the downside, it was cramped and not designed for crew comfort. Also, many features were crudely designed and manufactured, such as the gun sighting optics. The turret turning was relatively slow, as was its rate of fire, compared to other tanks operated by the allies and Germans.

The Tiger tank earned a reputation far in excess of the numbers sported on the battlefield. It had thick, well tempered armour and was armed with the 88 mm cannon. This gun was formidable and could leave any tank of its time a mass of jumbled metal at a 1000 metres. The Tiger was typically German and well engineered. The optics were excellent and rate of fire was high and accurate.

If anything the Tiger was too well engineered. It was a slow and expensive machine to manufacture. Only 1,347 Tigers were ever produced. Compare this with 33,805 T34s eventually made and you can see the major disadvantage of the Tiger. It was classed as a heavy tank and had a limited operation range. Due to its weight (57 tonnes) it consumed a lot fuel. This would become a major problem during the last year of the war when the Germans lost oil supplies in the East. Furthermore, the Allies concentrated a good deal of their bombing activity on German oil refineries and supporting infrastructure. Also, it was not really suited for the harsh winters of the Eastern front. The fuel froze and the interlocking bogie wheels became jammed with snow and ice. A situation which the Russians exploited by timing their attacks in the early morning.

To ask the question: 'Which was the better tank?' is not a fair one to ask. The T34 and Tiger were designed for different battlefield roles. The T34 was a fast moving breakthrough tank, to be used en mass to crush and dislocate enemy positions. Its role as a tank killer was secondary. The Tiger, as a heavy tank, was mainly designed as a defensive and static tank killer. It also dominated the immediate battlefield; in this role it had no equal. It excelled during the latter years of the war when the Germans were forced on the defensive. The Normandy battles of June and July, 1944 showed how imposing this tank could be, given the right terrain.

In the final analysis the T34 triumphed, not because it was a better tank, but because it was easy to manufacture, cheap and fulfilled the role of a 'general tank', in all its guises. The Tiger, although a fearsome defensive tank, was never present in enough numbers to make a real battlefield difference, although its psychological impact on the battlefield was never in doubt.


Wednesday 2 April 2014

Where da fuck me head gone?

At least he hasn't lost his grimace reflex 

Old scoop head is back in town. Just a guess, but I reckon this man wears a lot of hats. If not, it might explain why he is continually getting caught during the enterprise of criminal activity. Let's face it he isn't going to be too hard to pick out of a police 'line up.' And with half your cerebral cortex missing you are hardly likely to be a criminal mastermind.

His lamentable deformity does have its upside though. Great as an impromptu fruit bowl or large candle holder. And there was you a thinking that it is all bad...