Smashed Pumpkins (A Treatise On Inebriation And The Measurement Thereof)

I’ve spent more than my fair share of nights in assorted bars and clubs up and down the land, indulging in the devil’s brew. That’s a fancy-shmancy way of saying that i’ve been standing-up-falling-down-pissed a whole bunch of times.

Now sure, it’s not big and it’s not clever. There’s nothing sensible about drinking enough alchohol to leave you near blind, clutching a kebab like some sort of baffling, spiced life preserver. That being said, I enjoy certain alchoholic beverages, I enjoy spending time with friends and I enjoy socialising, so long as it’s on my own terms and I get to tell people to piss off if they come within six feet of me on an off day.

With all that in mind, i’ll not apologise for occasionally failing to drink responsibly. I won’t advise others to do it and i’ll happily spread the words of moderation and taking care of one’s self, so long as it’s understood that my vomit scented days of old are something i’m one hundred percent A-OK with.

These days, I rarely take a drink but as I write this at a little shy of 1am on a Saturday morning, i’m faced with the very real prospect of spending an evening in the company of John Barleycorn and his lesser known cousin, Mike Largebottleofbloodygoodsinglemalt.

As I ponder possibilities for the day and night ahead of me, I decide to listen to some music and my random Youtube playlist lands on 1979 by the Smashing Pumpkins. Thoughts of ice cold mojitos, combined with the pleasantly melancholy wailing of Billy-Why-Can-I-Not-Leave-TNA-To-Fucking-Die-Corgan cause a sudden spark of inspiration within me. Could Smashing Pumpkins be the answer to an issue which has plagued mankind since time began(ish)?

Picture the scene. An 18 year old me, firm of thigh and thick of ginger mane, steps out into the world. After a glass or two of sweet sherry, one of my friends turns to me…

DAVE*: “Hey Jim, is Dave** coming out tonight?”

ME: “He said he was. Hang on, i’ll ring him.”

After three attempts, I manage to find Dave’s number and start a call. He picks up after a couple of rings.

DAVE: “Hello mate, i’m headed out the door now”


DAVE: *laughter* “Bloody hell, how drunk are you?”

This happened. More than once. Usually, i’d say something like “Hahahahahaha” or, if I was feeling particularly eloquent, “Yeahhhh yeah hahahahaha alright”. I am and always have been a man of words.

The thing is, what was I supposed to say? How do you explain to someone what level of drunkenness you’ve reached? What’s the scale?

This morning, with Corgan assaulting my ears and half formed plans for debauchery in my future, I realised something. This will change your lives.

You are ALWAYS “Smashing Pumpkins” drunk.

The real question is, just how Smashing Pumpkins drunk are you? Let me break it down for you.

“It’s just playing in the background while I get ready”

You haven’t touched a drop.

“It’s fine, i’m 1979 drunk”

This is the start of the night. You’ve maybe had a couple of beers, relaxed a wee bit. You’re enjoying 1979, with it’s soft spoken verses and easy singalong chorus. Things are going great.

“Haha, i’m Today drunk!”

You’ve had a couple more drinks and you’re fine, you’re totally fine.

You’re a little giggly and you’re singing along to Today with a wee bit more volume than is absolutely necessary, but you’re fine.

Everything is fine.

Kebab and a taxi soon.


“Mate, oh mate. I’m Stand Inside Your Love drunk.”

You’re six pints and four shots into the evening. An evening which is edging ever closer to being a morning. You’ve spent the last half an hour discussing lost love and lamentation, although not in those exact terms. In fact, mostly you’ve half sobbed the words to Stand Inside Your Love, mumbled “s’was our song mate. Our song. We saw it inna-inna-inna film”. This would be a good time to head home, drink some water and get some sleep.

“I’m so sorry about last night. I was Ava Adore drunk.”

This stage sneaks up on you when you’re alone.

If you’re lucky, you managed to get a ride home or a taxi, or you live close enough to walk. If you’re exceptionally fortunate, your transport has dropped you safely to the door of your actual house. What’s more likely is that you’ve been dropped off at what you insisted was the entrance to your driveway, only to find yourself being menaced by a cat that you didn’t know you had, before realising that you’ve gotten out of the car half a mile early.

Eventually, you stagger through the door of your house. It took you five attempts to unlock the door, after first shoving the key into the letter box three times, gouging the door frame on the fourth attempt and for reasons you’ll never understand to your dying day, rounding out by putting it in the hanging basket and hoping somehow that the door would pop open due to proximity of key to lock.

You get as far as the living room and collapse on the sofa because the stairs look, to you, like something that Escher drew during that one night when he took enough ‘shrooms to kill Kong.

Despite having drank every drop of alchohol within a 20 mile radius of your house, you’ve managed to dig out the bottle of Midori that’s been gathering dust in the hall cupboard since your housewarming party, six years ago.

You jab your phone into life and send a barrage of texts, messages and DMs which will slowly reduce every friendship and working relationship you have ever built to ash while you sleep. Some of them would involve blurry close-up pictures of your genitalia but in a single, blissful moment of good fortune, you switched to selfie cam and so several people, one of whom is bound to be your aunt, receive images of your I-hope-my-willy-looks-amazing-in-this face.

You finally pass out and are found the next day by your loved ones, a sticky puddle of Midori gluing your face to the couch cushions, a half eaten burger turned to pulp in your pocket and Ava Adore on loop, blaring through one earbud which you have stuck up your nose.

You have gone full Pumpkin.

* There’s always a Dave

** We have two.

This was written for comedy purposes, folks. Always drink responsibly and never, EVER go full Pumpkin.

Letter Of Resignation

As resignations seem to be the theme of the day…
Dear Humanity,  It is with a heavy heart that I am writing to you to resign from the human race.

Dear Humanity

It is with a heavy heart that I am writing to you to resign from the human race.

As humanity is day by day proving itself to be a an unending shower of bastards, I have decided to stand alone under my banner of non-corporeal, malevolent entity. The fleshbag that currently acts as Host Body is inconsequential as he belongs to a race which doesn’t deserve the ball of miracles on which it resides.

You’ve done some good things, humans. Medical advances, moments of dazzlingly beautiful love and acceptance, cake. None of it changes the fact that day by day you sadden me with your constant attempts to destroy yourselves.

You rail against one another because of race, colour, religion, sexual orientation. You invented the concept of time and then waste that time on hatred. You broadcast I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here. Seriously, you send a bunch of Z-listers to a jungle and watch them eat scorpions and wipe their arse with poison ivy and call it entertainment. It’s a shame the dinosaurs didn’t last longer because most of you could do with a bloody good devouring.

This morning, I skipped through countless images of captured tweets and Facebook statuses, all of them recounting truly horrible stories of racist attacks on the streets of the United Kingdom (a name dripping with irony), all undeniably linked to the recent Brexit vote.

The entire Brexit situation is a point against the human race anyway, given the constant showers of shit from both sides of the argument, not to mention the fact that the word Brexit sounds like a shitty breakfast biscuit bar.

It doesn’t matter whether you voted Leave or Remain. Not at this particular moment in time. What matters is that we took what should have been a simple, democratic process and turned it into a slanging match. Not all Leave voters are racists. Of course they’re not. Sadly, the success of the Leave vote has given the racists a confidence boost. 

It’s all fucked and I want no part of it, so i’m stepping down. No more humaning for me.

Yours, angrily
Al. X


Dads Can Do Shit Too

Look at the state of this….


“Hey kids, your mum cooks right? Bet your dad doesn’t? Bet he sits on his ass looking like a crap, Rab C. Nesbitt tribute act, huh? Eating pizza, drinking beer and failing, because he’s a dad and not a mum? Dads are shit! SHIT! DADS SUCK BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO VAGINAS!”

I may be a tad oversensitive about this issue, but it really bugs me. I hate people asking if i’m “babysitting” my own children. I hate people saying things like “I’m sure Mummy can fix that for you” when i’m sat with the children and she’s out changing the oil in the car.

I once, while out and about with my brood, genuinely heard an old woman in a bus queue say “I expect it’s takeaway tonight then!” when The Short Ones told them they were having a daddy day as mummy was working. I took great pleasure in telling this octogenarian arsewit that we were headed to the shops whilst out to pick up some nice prosciutto to pep up the lasagne I was making.  I honestly don’t think she believed me.


As a man, i’ll never be able to appreciate what it’s like to live in a society which has for years been dominated by my gender, at the expense of female rights. I won’t argue with that. I will say though that on this subject, the great sexism pendulum has swung toward men and stuck there.

That said, the main reason we papas are constantly told how shit we are is because we live in a world where we’re expected to be out winning bread. I’m not sure where one wins bread, if i’m honest. Maybe a really shit village fete?  I digress…


The point is, world, that Dads can do shit too. Marital Unit, bloody wonder that she is, set off for work at half seven today. She’s a nurse, so she is out there right now, caring for the sick, being amazing. While she does that, i’ll be home. I’ll tidy the kids rooms, with their involvement because I believe in teaching them to keep their own shit together, of course. I’ve already made them breakfast, they’ll have a nice, healthy lunch later and then I might take them out for tea. We’ll head to town on the bus, grab a bite and then go watch guys in costumes beat piss out of each other at the cinema, because my kids have been raised to know the difference between reality and fiction and Captain America: Civil War is in town and looks incredible.

I’ll parent the shit out of today and i’ll do all of it while being a big, useless, penis-having dad, ’cause #DadsCanDoShitToo.

…I am losing my patience…