Ye Olde Linoleum Shoppe

Tuesday 28 February 2012


Things are tight chums. Make no bones about it. These days even respected university lecturers are reduced to wiping confetti off butchers' arses in a vain attempt to stave off penury. When I was no higher than a munchkin's nipple recession was precluded by bringing all the burials home off an excavation and using them to make a bracing soup. (It's well I remember those charming recession repasts illuminated only by my Father's petrol-soaked hair as he giggled at the entreaties of my Mother to be released from the rusty oven.)
Unfortunately the world has moved on since those innocent days and some archaeological companies have taken a novel lead in dealing with the downturn. These companies, normally with an accountant at the helm, grease the wheels of industry by sending their fresh faced archaeologists out onto street corners to seek 'John's' for reward.
In this new business scenario the archaeologist lingers under a gas lamp, while licking their beard suggestively at the vehicles sliding past. If they are in luck a prospective customer grinds to a halt -
'Hello love, looking for a bit of business?' Says our comely archaeologist with a game wink (just like his boss has instructed him.)
'That depends . . .' says the customer (clearly a member of the building trade.) 'What sort of stuff do you do?
'Oh, I do it all dearie,' says the archaeologist. 'I can go medieval, or full frontal neolithic, I do unprotected impact statements and - if you're nice to me - I even do oral hearings.'
'And are you cheap?' Says the builder drooling.
'Dirt cheap,' hisses the archaeologist.
The builder twirls his waxed moustache and smiles a half-moon of pyrrohea. 'Well then my lovely, climb aboard!' Says he, patting his well polished lap.
The pair then drive to a deserted field. A quiet spot, save for the background hum of a spectral civilisation. - And in this speechless place the builder slavers over his steaming dish of archaeology puttanesca while an old game is played out . . .
They are urban sprawling.
Talking in tongues.
Making ends meet.

Boom! Boom! Does anyone have a contact number for Allegorics Anonymous?

And to end, I'd just like to share my own version of a classical myth.

See you next week after I've picked all the splinters out!


  1. Brilliant McHale - i just laughed out loud and scared the tea lady

  2. Whatever the bizarre aims of this blog are - scaring tea ladies is not one. Tell her I'm sorry.

  3. Brilliant!!! :-) And so bloody true - as a someone who 'does' Oral Hearings :-)

  4. Ooo-er . . . my mother warned me about people like you . . .

  5. A long time ago, when God was a boy, I used to moonlight as a [building] laborer at weekends on sites that I was excavating during the week, but back then archaeologists were not well paid technocrats they are now!

  6. My Dad was a builder. Didn't have a clue what I was up to . . . . And now I'm a Dad, I don't either.



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I am a descended from a long line of conga dancers. I occasionally wear shoes. I gave up going to the toilet twenty years ago - it's a filthy habit. I have a pet bunny called Mucky - he's a filthy rabbit.