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LOGO issue 11, summer 2010

issue 11, summer 2010

2 News In Brief MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010
IN THIS ISSUE... In response to cries of hypocrisy the ship’s kitchen as evidence of the
regarding recycing Yum replied: aid workers’ murderous intent.
KNITTING SOCIETY IN AWARDS “Well it is recycled. From trees. We
SHORTLIST STITCH-UP don’t see what the problem is, it’s
not like it’s a rainforest or anything”.
ANARCHY SOCIETY SEEKS This news comes only weeks after ON WHETHER OR NOT
STRONG NEW LEADERSHIP the revelation that Yum’s coffee THE DSU SHOULD STAY
brand relied upon underage enslaved AFFILIATED TO DURHAM
DIZZIE RASCAL LOSES Ugandan workers, eliciting an
apology: “Oh come on now, we’re UNIVERSITY
very sorry and everything but do Proponents argue that the university
you have any idea how much money is unrepresentative of the vast
GROUNDBREAKING/COMEDY fair trade costs?”. majority of students, and is no
longer relevant to DSU students in
2010. The referendum is supported
SHAKEAHOLIC’S SECRET mainly by a group of past and
INGREDIENT REVEALED current students, who have set up
MH has uncovered the reason for the website We
Shakeaholic’s incredibly moreish asked the leader of the group on
quality. Our undercover investigator where the DSU should live if not in
has confirmed the milk is lined with Durham, and were told “well, I’ve
vast quantities of grade A crack personally been living up my own
cocaine. In a written statement, the arse for years now so surely we can
owners defended their unorthodox find somewhere”.
choice citing greatly improved
customer loyalty and satisfaction.
They went on to state that at the end
of the day their milkshakes taste
Resident made homeless by
amazing, and that achievement is
the recent demolition
nothing to snort at.
Cement, wood, nails and other
Weapons of Mosque Construction STUDENT TRAPPED
(WMCs) have been found on IN DURHAM BUBBLE
the Mava Marmara, according to PRESUMED DEAD
the Israel Defense Forces, who Jonty Mellor was last seen
conducted a commando raid of the campaigning for DUCK and taking
ship in the dead of night, killing part in one of the many, many
nine humanitarian activists in regattas. His rowing captain told
international waters. Other items us “He just took it too far. Formals
“Come on buddy, just a sip” which are banned from being every other night, rugby socials
imported into Gaza include material to boot and hours spent preparing
YUM RUNS OUT OF which has the potential to educate sharp questions for the weekly
CARDBOARD, FELLS Palestinians above their station, debate”. Friends and family have
SHERWOOD FORREST such as A4 writing paper. “Israel has all but given up hope, and fear even
Yet another controversy hits done nothing wrong whatsoever!” if he is found he’ll be unable to be
Yum after contractors chopped claimed Israeli president Benjamin integrated in the real world and may
down 96% of Sherwood forest to ‘Bibi’ Netnayahu, who also pointed have to be put down.
produce cardboard for coffee cups. to kitchen knives found onboard in
MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010 3 News In Brief
IDENTITY OF FIT was a terrible mother what with my a 7th female author has begun, but
drug habit sexual promiscuity and isn’t expected to conclude until at
REVEALED violent tendencies. I just wasn’t fit to
The intra-university celebrity known least 2050.
look after this child”. We asked both
only as ‘Fit’ has been located.
parents why they didn’t simply hand
Dozens of universities joined in to
the child over to social services,
close in on the elusive figure via a
Mr Lee replied “Our child is 5
dedicated website ‘fitfinder’. At its
years old middle class and healthy.
peak there were over 150 sightings
Nobody wants him. It’s like he’s got
of Fit a day, stretching out across the
the plague or something. Actually,
country. The website has since been
maybe I should try that”.
dispanded, and although for legal
reasons we can’t reveal Fit’s real
name her spokesman commented DURHAM ALL COMPLETE
she’s been forced to hiding as WANKERS, STUDY One of Stephenie Meyer’s
“people want to do some very, very CONFIRMS many writing apprentices
nasty things to her”. A new report by the Cambridge
University Neurology Team has
reaffirmed previous findings that SUBWAY SERVE NON-
University of Durham students MEATBALL BASED
are almost universally complete SANDWICHES
dickheads. The study, led by Peter “Bullshit”, said one Mildert student,
Role, found that 98% of Durhamites “there’s no way this place wait.
scored at least 8 or higher (of a What the fuck. Is that place open
possible 10) on the Glasgow Twat right now? It’s not Tuesday it can’t
Scale. The GTS is the standard be Tuesday I could have sworn it
test for assessing levels of self- was Friday. I need to go”, a Castle
righteousness, irritating accents, student was similarly shocked;
lack of real-world awareness and “Now I know you’re lying. I know
use of the word “banter”. The the meatball shop, I go to Studio then
confidence interval given was meatball shop. That’s how it works,
A censored photo of Fit 95%, and the report concluded that 50p entry then £1.99 meatballs, then
one possible solution would be for
FATHERS4JUSTICE Durham students to “just fuck off
home to cry”.
MEMBER VOWS TO forever.” Clarification
APPEAL IN CUSTODY Many readers have suggested
BATTLE that we cover “Everybody Draw
STEPHENIE MEYER 6TH Mohammed Day”, however we’d
Fathers4Justice member Jake Lee
is appealing the court’s decision to
EVER FEMALE AUTHOR like to remind readers that MH is
After years of searching,Waterstones a non-prophet organisation.
award him custody of his only child.
has announced that Stephenie Meyer
He told MH, “I don’t want this little
has been officially recognised as
shit. I mean I told the court I was
a female author. Following in the
a drunk and don’t work and have
footsteps of Jane Austen, Charlotte
no money and I’m actually gay and
Brontë (who also went under the
they were having none of it. It’s
names Emily, Anne and Beatrix
just yet another example of legal
Potter), Virginia Woolf, Anne Frank
discrimination against the father and
(also known as Enid Blyton) and
it’s got to stop.”
J.K.Rowling, Stephenie will have
His ex-wife Helen, 32, stated she
her works read by more than “those
was happy with the decision: “I mean
feminists who hang around near the
I feel so vindicated. I explained I
cooking section”. The search for
4 Home/Foreign Affairs MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010




The UN Secretary-General defended their actions, claiming incursion as “a right dog’s din-
was said to be “blown away” “some of the properties were real ner”.
by events in the Gaza strip this pigsties” and were “extremely The paramilitary group Sus
week. After months of talks, Big flimsy.” Scrofa issued a statement on its
Bad Wolf construction has com- Old Major, a spokesman for website stating that “we cannot
menced building work on several the community said “this really be deceived for we know our en-
new settlements on a heavily dis- is the last straw. They huffed and emy well and all the Wolf’s plans
puted piece of land. puffed and then used armoured will go to pot, our war chimney
“They huffed and bulldozers to evict us. There’s is smouldering with rage”. Nego-
nothing worse than being in con- tiations are under away, but Wolf
puffed and then stant fear of Wolf at the door.” insiders describe the talks as con-
used armoured International condemnation stantly hitting a brick wall.
bulldozers to evict will not be far off, although the
United States has recently at-
us” tacked the Porcine Authority
Wolf is using building stand- for allowing militant elements
ards legislation to justify the de- to freely raid Wolf’s forestry
struction of several porcine com- reserves. Its position follows a
munities already on the land. At gaffe from the Middle Eastern
a press conference yesterday they envoy who described the current Community in a huff

Near the end of last year my girlfriend I mean, it was myself she dumped. a physiological reaction to fear is that
left me for another man. We’d met Desperate people call for desperate the sudden inability to breathe tends to
during Fresher’s Week, so naturally measures, so I improvised and turned make one feel rather anxious. In fact,
I assumed we’d be together forever. to the only thing available to me - a as I fell to the floor, noting a rather
Unfortunately, I hadn’t accounted for the brightly coloured stall next to the dodgy unusual lapse in motor functions, I
possibility of outdoor pursuits one day anoraks. Legal Highs. Worth a shot would describe myself as “really very
defining manliness more than magazine right? anxious”.
journalism. I was inconsolable. Two hours later and I’m nodding Lying there, trying to ignore the fact
But then I remembered: Glastonbury. along awkwardly to some electro beats, that pins-and-needles had spread to
Booked in happier times, those tickets painfully sober, at a silent disco. Taking my actual face, I prepared for my exit
cost like £200. There’s no way she off my headphones I have a look around, from this world. So this is how I die;
could drop out of that. With this in mind and suddenly everything becomes clear. in the cabaret tent at Glastonbury. Not
I formulated a plan to win her back: I’m not on real drugs, and I’m not at a raving my nuts off at the dance arena,
drugs. Glastonbury is full of drugs, real disco. I’m standing in a field having or shooting up in the hospitality area
everyone’s doing them. And everyone spent 8 quid on plant fertilizer. I wanted toilets, but lying on an embroidered rug,
always looks so happy on the telly. This to play knock down ginger with the in a circus top, while Marcus Brigstocke
was my one chance – four days alone doors of perception, and I found a club reads from the Sunday papers in a
with her before she moved away again. without music and some pills without sardonic manner. This wasn’t the plan.
We’d see some bands, take some drugs, a high. I’ll tell you what’s behind the Fortunately, my ex was on hand to get
and then just as The Edge was striking curtain, Dorothy: 200 morons going me to the medical tent. Less fortunately,
those final chords of ‘Where the Streets ape-shit to the latest Now CD in a semi- an ex-girlfriend ranks just below your
Have No Name’ she would forget about noiseless tent. dad and the guy who used to bully you
all that other stuff and fall back into my in school in a list of people who you
arms. It was foolproof. “just being don’t want as witness to a paramedic
A week later, Bono broke his back.
Undeterred, I resolved that the plan
myself” clearly explaining what you believed to be the
final few minutes of your life was in fact
should continue. Living in Durham, wasn’t getting me just you getting a little nervous. “Look
obtaining the drugs before the festival mate,” the driver sighed, producing an
was obviously not an option. Stockton’s anywhere. I mean, indemnity form and a pen, “I can take
a long way, and I’m afraid of needles. I it was myself she you in if you really want me to, but by
wasn’t worried though. I’d heard about the time we get there I’m betting you’ll
Glastonbury; shrooms basically grow dumped be fine.” Shit. Can he say that? He’s
wild there, and every second person’s a making me choose between my natural
dealer. Sorting out a few pills should be I didn’t sleep that night and spent the instinct not to look like a fucktard in
no problem. next 10 hours concluding that perhaps front of the woman who callously threw
I’ve since spent hours trying to work the human body might not be designed me aside, and an overwhelming fear of
out the exact point at which things to have that amount of caffeine death. I signed the form, and stumbled
started to go wrong. It’s hard to narrow introduced to it in one go. I usually start off to watch the England match.
down, but I do think that camping in the to lose the plot after two skinny lattes. Later, left with a lonely 5 hour train
family area significantly reduced our With the trial run a failure, I convinced journey home, I thought back over the
chances of scoring a successful drugs the ex to give the bands a miss the next trip. I was sleep deprived, acutely aware
deal. Far from the utopian visions I had day and come and watch some comedy of my own self-worthlessness and
of free love and cheap drugs, I had an acts around the Circus Field. I felt my experiencing an overwhelming urge to
angry father of three explaining in detail offering of fake drugs and men who are cry in broad daylight. Essentially, legal
what he would do to my man bits should funnier than me would remind her what highs have managed to simulate every
I ever set foot near his gazebo again. a catch she let slip away. aspect of genuine recreational drugs,
With drugs nowhere to be found and Within twenty minutes the tent except the bit where you are actually
the fields awash with unwashed white started spinning and I found myself on drugs. They are not a legal way of
middle class yuppies, I was getting unable to breathe. Unbeknownst to me, getting high, they are just legal. They
desperate. I’d considered Rohypnol I was having an anxiety attack. Never charge you close to a tenner for what is
but that seemed to cross a line of some having had an anxiety attack before, basically just a massive caffeine rush,
sort. But then again “just being myself” I mistook this for the onset of death. and no one needs that much caffeine.
clearly wasn’t getting me anywhere. One major flaw of the anxiety attack as Honestly, it’s fucking criminal.
6 Feature: Mental Health MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010

there were a string of one night palms, “I found only void, emp-
stands. It was all so easy given the tiness. And staring into that void
circumstances; the world suggest- gave me a kind of vertigo. It was
ed action, and I, in response, acted. vertigo at the array of choice be-
But however involved I tried to be- fore me; what was the right thing
come with anything, there was this to do? There were so much people
growing feeling of numbness that judged me to be: attractive, a stu-
I couldn’t shake. Nothing gave me dent, a woman; How was I to how
solace.” whether these roles reflected me
or not, and what could I do that
Many have been saddened to hear “It was vertigo at would ever truly act them out?”
of the plight of one of last year’s
winners of the prestigious ‘Fittest
the array of choice “And now? I watch and wait. I
have given up on most things. But
Fresher’ award, Bethany Mat- before me” I am not without hope.” Her face
thews. The 19 year-old Castle “Feelings like that came on brightens a little, her voice lifts. “If
student, once admired university- more and more. Wherever I went, we take freedom itself as our goal,
wide for her charm, radiant beau- I could feel the burning gazes of find meaning in the meaningless-
ty, and capacity to drink her own other people dragging over my ness; if we do not hide behind the
weight in alcohol is no longer the skin; their tacit judgement of my masks society gives us, but respect
vibrant part of the college’s social attractiveness. The faces of those our freedom and that of all human-
scene she once was. Increasingly around me seemed mask-like, gro- ity, and really choose, then, I think
she is only to be seen in public tesque, unrecognisable. Similarly, there is reason to have hope.”
aimlessly wandering the streets my body felt thing-like, a puppet I Matthew’s college are obvious-
in the early hours, dressed all in awkwardly operated from afar; or ly very concerned about her state
black. else it was this great pristine mar- of mind. “This sort of thing is not
“After I won FF, I must have ble block I was encrusted within, uncommon,” said James Phillips,
been very happy,” Matthews be- frozen in time”. We are outside Castle Chaplain. “It’s so sad to see
gins, in her exclusive interview now, and she pauses to take a long a once promising student raving so
with MH. We are seated in an in- drag of a cigarette. incoherently like this. But rest as-
conspicuous corner of a coffee- “I’d scrutinise myself for the sured we will be taking all neces-
shop; on her lap is a dog-earred ‘real me’ so in some small way, I sary steps to return her to health.
copy of Sophocles’ Ajax. “I mean, could communicate that to some- University counsellors have pre-
I smiled a lot”, she goes on dispas- one, feel a spark of true human scribed a comprehensive program
sionately, “and people around me connection. But the whole ef- of lash and banter to get her back
seemed very pleased, so I suppose fort was in vain; I always eluded to her old self. She’ll be feeling
was. I was invited out to so many myself.” She looks down at her right as rain in no time.”
parties, so many nights out. And
Apologies & Corrections
• The previously advertised article on time management has been pushed back to the next issue

• In the Issue 10 article ‘Stop him before he kills again’ we stated that VC Chris Viggins was raised by
wolves and privately educated in the Fletcher Memorial Home for the criminally insane. This was a
typographical error, and we apologise for any confusion caused.

• We have, on multiple occasions, used the words: Maddie, Immigration, Paedophile, Diana, and Blacks.
These words are copyrighted by The Daily Mail and we apologise for inadvertently including them.

Dear MH, Dear MH, Dear MH,

What the fuck has happened to Bob I found your review of Coldplay’s latest Is the machine that’s currently
Hoskins? He’s my all-time favourite album rather lacking. Specifically, it collaborating with Florence the same
actor, but I haven’t seen him in anything lacked the words “lame”, “uninspired” one that Rage Against The Machine
since that dinosaur thing several and “samey”. That is all. is raging against? It would certainly
Christmases ago. explain the difference in musical styles.
Neil Foelding
Lots of Love, Professor Weetos
Sarah Bridges Ed: Indeed it is. Interestingly enough,
Dear MH, the Machine got its start when it
Ed: According to the Internet Movie collaborated with Pink Floyd on their
Database, Bob Hoskins is currently I was eating porridge when I saw album Wish You Were Here all the way
shooting a decade-in-the-making biopic the face of Che Guevara in the back in 1975.
of his own life, in which he plays every maple syrup, and have sent in this
member of his family. photo so you can see for yourselves. ***
Sceptics will say it is just a random Dear MH,
*** conglomeration of maple syrup, but
I believe it to be a sign. Of what, I My friends and I have been having a
Dear MH, cannot say; probably of revolution or religious debate. If you were out on a
something. I need to Wikipedia him walk with Jesus and you came across
Please, please, please publish this letter first. a massive puddle, would you be more
so that I won’t technically be lying impressed if he jumped it without
anymore when I tell girls that I am a taking a run-up, or if he walked across
published writer. it?

Yours Beggingly, Yours devotionally,

Rev. Christoper Bacon
Anonymous Man Parish of St. Gggggg’s, Wilton
St Bernard’s College, Durham
Ed: Glad to see we have some readers
in Stockton, although how to do you Ed: We’ve googled him and he appears In response to several forceful letters
expect to prove it’s you when you’ve to be some kind of merchandising the editor would like to make clear
sent it in anonymously? mogul, so we’re guessing it was Che that Allison Gardener did not, as had
branded syrup. been implied, go the whole way with
*** him. But, in fact, “had nothing to do
*** with that weirdo”


Pikachu wakes up. ‘Please don’t let me see her,’ thinks Everyone was very sad to see
Next to Jigglypuff. Bulbasaur. Farfetch’d go. But this was one
‘Well, that’s a mistake I won’t be He sees her. mission he’d have to conduct alone.
repeating,’ he thinks. ‘Bulba. Bulbasaur,’ he says.
She leaves. Ash sits, gently stroking Pikachu.
The Snorlax slowly scarpers. ‘Stupid, stupid, stupid, why do I Too gently, if anything.
Lazy fat bastard that he is. always say the wrong thing?’ he
thinks, as he watches her go.
8 Durham Prospectus 2010 Photo


Thanks to Matt Smith and (left to right): Tim, Emma, Chad’s African Drummers, Steph, Hisham, Daisy, Iain, Matt, Rob, Alex, Andy, Alan, Ghassan
MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010 9 Mostly Hazardous Dating

Name: Anonymous understand but I’ve seen much worse. Ustinov date would be a slightly older
College: Castle He also kept telling me how much he man I was thinking more student than
loved the fact my eyes were different faculty.
The editor received an email from this colours but that was more cute. Not to be deterred, I composed
guy, who wished to take part on the Disaster struck when his phone rang. myself and entered with him. The meal
condition we don’t reveal his name so Ignoring it and hoping it goes away was surreal in that I felt more like a
his girlfriend wouldn’t find out. tops the list of preferable options, but I nightline operator than a date. The
He was an obvious rah (you could can settle for stopping to turn it off for meal funeral marched on and whereas
have stewed his accent and made a fibre a second. Picking up without stopping I was interested, Malcom’s story was an
rich supplement from it) with brown on the other hand is beyond the line. upsetting one. Feeling quite depressed
wavy hair, rowers arms and a wardrobe Worst was to come when it was clear myself I suggested we hit Klute because
straight out of Jack Wills. We started the girlfriend was on the other end, who well, why not?
with an introductory chat, he’s from a convinced him to “be there in 10”. He Klute wasn’t nearly as bad as I
wealthy family, has completed the 3 hung up, pulled out, and reenacted the thought; most people were too drunk or
gallon challenge and has an 8 inch cock. ending of every porno since the dawn of tongue tied to even notice Malcolm. He
So far, so good. the internet before telling me he had to bought the drinks, quaddies all round.
During the meal at Fabio’s we go and would I mind letting myself out. We left early and he invited me back to
chatted about music, it turns out he likes It all started well but as usual the hot his but I just couldn’t - he was a wreck.
all the same music as me, especially the guy turns out to be a bastard. Overall Instead, out of pity I led him to under
Disney soundtracks. What a sweetheart! rating: 4/10 the bridge and decided to give him a
He even bought all the drinks, and a parting gift.
bottle of wine and three trebles can’t It stands as the weirdest blowjob of
have come cheap. my life. It were as if I was doing a public
Afrer that we headed off to his place service and not an intimate sexual act. I
stopping at the door for a kiss. I give tried to ignore the age difference but I
this a 7/10 as he lead in expertly but had a profound thought that in a way the
went for the tongue a tad too early. His spermatozoa I was ingesting were older
house was a nice find on the Avenue. than me, it was a philosophical moment.
Standard 4 room gig (though he’d made His quiet sobbing didn’t help, usually
sure the house would be empty), I give they don’t cry until after I’m done.
it a 6/10, mainly because of the double This date was too weird to rate,
bed and clean sheets. although it taught people of all ages
Part-way through The Notebook need love.
and smalltalk he pounced. Timing
good though spoiled when he went Name: Malcolm Stone
for hand-on-breast before going for
the neck; a fairly amateur mistake. He
College: Ustinov
had good hygiene and his boxers were
I didn’t know anything about this dater,
surprisingly risqué which were later
only that we were hitting the G-Spot
justified by the true-to-word 8 incher.
at 8pm sharp. After about 5 minutes
Before I knew what was happening
of waiting around I was approached
he was hitting every sweet spot and it
by a guy who was composed entirely
was clear I was far from the first pair
of tweed and must have been pushing
of legs on those shoulders. He has a
60. My date turns out to be a history
weird football fetish and made me wear
lecturer, and whereas I assumed a
an Everton tshirt which I don’t quite
Facebook pages we’d like to see
• The awkward silence when someone invites you to yet another awkward silence group
• Sally lost her phone whilst drunk in Bristol. So we killed her.
• This group will be worth joining LOL jk I’m a massive twat
• That sickening metallic sound when you let the library door swing into an innocent girl’s face

A special message to the graduates of 2010 from Durham Chancellor SO, YOU GOT A 2:2...
Bill Bryson, best know for his work as Chancellor of Durham
University: “Please, please get more famous than Jeremy Vine”. Things may look dire bad now but
we’re here to assure you that
ONES TO WATCH: FIVE GRADUATES it’s not the end of the world and
offer you our top five tips for
WITH THE DURHAM INDIFFERENCE making the most of your fate life.
Name: Tarquin Saunders Name: Jenny Hanson
College: Hatfield, Course: Politics College: Grey, Course: Social Sciences 1) Have you considered falling over for
Tarquin is one of few public school boys As an active member of DUCK, SCA,
to genuinely not be gay. This is evident Amnesty International and ActionAid 2) Don’t include your degree in your
in his renowned talent of blurring the Jenny perfectly embodies the Durham CV, just claim to have spent the last 3
years working for McDonalds.
line between drunken consent and rape. spirit of taking part in fucking everything
in the dim hope of some recognition.
3) Lower your expectations for a career,
As President of the Union Society he
there are many rewarding jobs available
booked an array of middle class right In 10 years time she sees herself in TV scheduling.
wing guests, all while avoiding being balancing being a dispensible and
overtly racist for a good 3 months. overworked charity worker and a 4) Stay on as an ITS technician, no
vacant, unloving mother all while experience considered a plus.
He hopes to follow the Durham tradition battling an addiction to prescription
of never being heard of again. anti-anxiety medication. 5) Become a religious leader
Name: Miles Smith Name: David Jackson Name: Susannah Watson
College: St Mary’s, Course: Philosophy College: Van Mildert, Course: English College: St John’s, Course: Maths

One of the most promising philosophers Having produced over 40 plays Susannah’s skin colour, working class
in the UK, Miles will soon achieve what nobody’s ever seen, to being an integral background, and comprehensive school
most of the Durham student population member of several comedy troupes; education make her Durham’s premier
have been aspiring to since their early David was born to be a star. box ticker and us all more diverse.
teens, and study at Cambridge.
His ability to make thinly veiled sexual She is one of few that have reached
On his move to Cambridge he notes innuendos and critique Durham’s class beyond the pale of Durhan notability
“It’s onwards an upwards really, it’s divide means Palatinate will surely and can now be referred to by name
well known Oxbridge make the news, write a profile chartering his mediocre and not with an awkward look and “you
and Durham well...Durham reports it”. media career in the coming years. know, the erm...the black one”.


First up is Rosie with Emily is sporting a Here’s a cheeky
a risqué outfit that’ll more mundane little option for the lads.
knock ‘em dead. number.
Joe is sporting a
Skimpy and stylish, It’s worth noting tasty Jack Wills
if the transluscent the Sarong can be maroon tank top,
corset doesn’t get the bought in a variety of with a Ralli-quilt
looks nothing will. styles and colours to waistcoat.
suit your needs.
The pink lace thong As you can see, the
peeking out from The rhinestone bra fluorescent yellow
the short shorts are works also works Chinos are for the
currently on sale in well in combination more adventurous
La Senza. with a tube top. dressers only.
MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010 11 Feature: The Man Upstairs

‘Sarah Robinson?’ never had a very detailed picture of helpline partly out of a vague sense
That was when she had the first God, but at a push she would have of responsibility, partly from a dislike
inkling that something unusual was described him as being a little bit of going to nightclubs, and – to a
happening. It wasn’t unusual for like her parents, with a dash of her minor but still discernible extent –
callers to try to connect with her on a great-uncle Horatio, a man who was because it would look good on her
personal level – indeed, it was pretty addicted to snuff, managed to behave cv. All better reasons than her friend
much unavoidable. All the operators in a manner both louche and dignified, Boris, who had signed up in order to
were instructed to give their names, it and seemed to have been on first- meet girls. Having said that, he was
being easier for suicidal people to get name terms with every great author still with that girl who had phoned
things off their chest when speaking from Graham Greene to Sophocles. in last Christmas, and here Sarah
with a named individual, rather than There had been no single moment was, with the same vague sense of
an identikit bureaucrat. It wasn’t when she realized that there was responsibility, a sneaking feeling that
a novelty to have an intimate and nothing else. She had never been nightclubs mightn’t be as bad as they
sometimes terrifying conversation particularly passionate about the seemed, and pretty much the same old
with a complete stranger. What was issue, one way or the other. Thinking cv.
new was this person’s knowing her about the meaning of life or why we ‘I’m just curious as to how
name before she had a chance to say existed at all struck Sarah as the kind people are finding things.’
it. of questions one had to ponder, and ‘Things?’
‘Yes… how did you know?’ Sarah was never cut out for pondering. ‘Life. The universe. The whole
‘I can’t help it. I know ‘The God?’ shebang. How is for you?’
everything.’ ‘The original and best. Accept ‘Right… but, why me?’
Ok, she thought, this one’s a real no substitute.’ ‘The other guy is a bit boring.
fruitcake. Not that it was unusual for Wow. No, make that wow squared. Not meaning to offend, but he saves
callers to be a few cucumber slices Or wow to the power of n, where n lives just because people fall asleep
short of a full bucket of Pimms, but stood for any number larger than she before they get a chance to pull the
thinking they were omniscient, that could think of off the top her head. trigger. I suppose everyone’s got their
was a new one. ‘Should I call you God, or Mr. MO.’
‘I am omniscient. And I’m not God, or…?’ Sarah would have liked to stick up
a fruitcake. Although, sometimes…’ ‘God is fine.’ for Jim, but, perhaps not surprisingly,
Suffering shish kebab. Now she ‘Right…’ Sarah’s training He was right. Jim was the most boring
was weirded out. kicked in, hotwiring her incredulity. person she had ever met – more boring
‘No need to be weirded ‘Is there anything in particular you’d than a plain water biscuit, garnished
out. There’s a perfectly rational like to talk about?’ with water and served with a side dish
explanation.’ ‘There’s a procedure you go of H2O.
‘You say that… but you know through, isn’t there? A checklist of ‘And I’m interested in what
my name, and you can, apparently, questions, to see what category I fall you’d have to say. You are, and please
read my thoughts.’ into?’ take this in the best possible way, a
‘No apparently about it. Try There was, although it was pretty typical human being.’
me. Think of something.’ considered neither polite nor helpful No-one likes to think of themselves
She did. to bring this up in the conversation. as typical. Sarah was typical, in that
‘Mark in Year Ten. Turns out Suicidal people, even in the depths respect. She had put in the requisite
he was gay. Sorry about that.’ of their despair, tended to get quite hard work to achieve effortless
Sarah didn’t know what to say. irked at the idea of being points in a individuality – deleting music from
‘I suppose I’d better statistical breakdown. her iPod if it became popular with
introduce myself. I’m God.’ ‘Well, yes, but you the wrong people, not admitting to
Like most people she knew, Sarah presumably know which one you reading Harry Potter books, carefully
used to believe in God. In the years belong to. If you belong to any. So… matching her clothes for that just-
between Santa Claus and true love, if you don’t mind me asking, why are fallen-out-of-a-charity-shop look. She
He served as a moral compass and you calling?’ wasn’t neurotic about it, like some of
repository of her hopes for life. Sarah Sarah had volunteered for the her friends – like Julia, who crushed
12 Feature: The Man Upstairs MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010
mint leaves into her coffee, or Max, She wondered if this was a perk of imagine the paperwork?’
who usually wore nothing except being a deity, or something of a minor Having spent the previous summer
a barrel, with a bow-tie on special curse. doing work experience with her local
occasions. That kind of thing was too ‘But, there is a lot of council, Sarah actually could.
close to being outright atypical for her pressure… I knew how difficult it ‘Is there a hell?’
liking. would be when I took the job, but ‘Yes. It’s actually a nightclub.
‘I suppose, things are ok. I there are times when I look in the It was the worst thing I could think of.’
think. I mean, I haven’t thought about mirror and I ask myself... is this it? Is Sarah felt relieved, and somewhat
it recently… I suppose there are bad this what I was expecting being God vindicated.
things… but there always are…’. to be like?’
‘Exactly. People go on about One of the difficulties of operating
wars and famines like I planned it a helpline is that at times Sarah
all. All things considered, I think found it more or less impossible The silence after God had hung up
I’ve done a pretty good job. I mean, to empathise with the particular felt like the longest pregnant pause
nobody’s perfect, right? Sure, there problems of the caller. This was one in history. Sarah didn’t know quite
are problems, but where are you of those occasions. what to do. Other people to whom
going to get anything better? You ‘Don’t you have those days God spoke tended to found religions,
should have seen the universes we when you ask, can I hack this? I know or cults if they couldn’t afford proper
drew up in the planning stages – you do. Well, I have them as well. And PR. She doubted whether what she
complete nightmare. Let me tell you, sometimes I don’t know if I can.’ had just heard could form the basis of
there was blood on the floor when we Neither did Sarah. a new belief system, and in any case it
rejected the Infinite Tower of Turtles ‘Well, you did send Jesus, didn’t feel like God had been calling
blueprint.’ right? Couldn’t you send him back her, except in a rather quotidian sense.
God was silent for a moment. Sarah again?’ The phone rang. She answered,
noticed that His silence seemed a lot ‘Oh, no. The Second Coming, hoping it was just someone feeling
more profound than other people’s. Apocalypse, End of Days - can you suicidal.
MOSTLYHARMLESS 11 - SUMMER 2010 13 Feature: Mitigating Circumstances

meant a 1st was an option and after my nose really itched during my last
that maybe even a BBC internship. exam and the heating was at least
With this I could be a newsreader in two degrees too high”.
5 to 10 years”. Kevin hopes his experience will
Before long Kevin was doing be a cautionary tale for others, and
anything to get his next hit; sees his job as an opportunity to give
deliberately falling down stairs, back: “I mean I feel I can undo some
taking up Judo, poisoning relatives. of the damage by helping others.
He was trapped in the seedy I see kids telling me the dog ate
underbelly of Durham academia, their homework or their mum died
Picturesque, renowned, inspiring-
only thinking of ways to score his of cancer and I can just see where
these are just some of the words
next claim. Things escalated when a they’ll end up. I guide them to make
used to describe Durham University.
student (who we can’t name for legal the right choices because nobody
However, under this veil of reputation
reasons) put Kevin in contact with a deserves to end up like me. What
lies a world of corruption, deception,
professional claiminator. He would even is onomatopoeia anyway?”
and mitigating circumstances.
ensure a valid claim, no claim no
The false claiming of mitigating
fee. His methods were frightening: MH WEATHER
circumstances or claimin’ as it’s ANDY CARTHY BRINGS US HIS
deliberately injuring friends of the
known on the street is affecting a 5-YEAR ECONOMIC FORECAST
claimant, drugging drinks at bars to
large number of students.
trigger a public collapse - nothing
Kevin, a recent graduate who The 5 year forecast shows they’ll be
was beneath him. “I just needed the
was ensnared in the vicious cycle a heavy downpoor of repossessions
claim I’d have paid any cost. I mean
of addiction and despair, talks to through Newcastle. Surrey will be
I couldn’t do it it without help. What
MH openly about his experience relatively clear due to it’s vain shadow,
the fuck can you say about F. Scott
and for the first time sheds light on however Cornwall may burst its banks
Fitzgerald for christ’s sake”.
this murky subject. A claimant since and become fully submerged by the
Christmas of his first year, Kevin’s “With this I could finance sea within the next 10 years.
life was torn apart by his addiction They’ll be brief spells of prosperity
leading to him being awarded an
be a newsreader in around the Brighton area next year,
Ordinary Degree and taking a job as 5 to 10 years” though this gay affair will surely be
forgotten with the orgy of poverty that
a English teacher. follows.
Things fell apart when the contact
It all started with an essay. Kevin Finally, The Cayman Islands are
was caught artifically inseminating
had got drunk, pulled and by the due an extended period of affluence
the sleeping girlfriend of a claimant.
time he made it back to his house so good news for the bankers then.
He quickly gave up names for a
he only had half an hour to finish I’ve been Andy Carthy, your destitute
reduced sentence and Kevin was
the essay and submit it. Alone and weatherman coming live from the roof
disciplined. All the mitigating of a tall building, good night.
afraid, Kevin turned to his college
circumstances were revoked and he
father. “I’ve got just the thing” he
was forced to write about authors
said, “don’t worry. Just tell them
people have actually heard of for his
your pet died. Everyone does it all
the time so it’s no big deal”. With
There will always be addicts and
those words resounding around
impressionable minds who will be
Kevin’s head, he took the form.
led astray. What’s new here is the
Kevin had almost forgotten about
alarming rise in cases stemming
the experience until a fortnight later
from peer pressure to take part. One
when he got his marks back. “20%
third year Mathematician told us,
dispensation which brought me up
“all my friends were doing it. I felt
to way into 2:1 terriory, I couldn’t
I’d be disadvantaged if I didn’t. Plus
fucking believe it. It was just easy it

Tonight sees the start of a new se- have him looking as good in death Milton Keynes.
ries from everyone’s favourite ana- as he ever did in life!” Black is defi- There are a couple of genuine
gram, Gok Wan. Having sorted us nitely out (“It’s classic, it’s tradi- surprises during the hour, and it’s
out in our primordial, animal state tional, it’s... so morbid, girlfriend!” difficult not to be swept along by
(i.e. nakedness), he now turns his he proclaims, flinging a heavy tux- the Gok’s obvious enthusiasm for
fashionistic gaze to the second edo over his shoulder); bright or- what is in fact a decidedly creepy
consequence of our naturalness; ange galoshes definitely in. “I can’t enterprise. By the end I found I
our mortality. Yes, so dedicated is believe what you’ve done to him!” was almost welcoming death my-
Gok to the gentle art of Looking cries The Deceased’s daughter, self- not because the show is bad,
Good, he even believes we should bursting into tears. but because I’d look great in bright
be wary of what we wear when Then we’re off to Italy: “The orange galoshes.
we’re (try saying that aloud) no Italians are way ahead of us when
longer around. it comes to dressing up corpses,”
“I believe that as your soul’s Gok snarls, before meeting up
moved on, so should your fash- with a Tuscan undertaker who
ion sense!” he says in the opening shows him how a bit of mascara
segment, mincing his way breezily can bring a corpse to life. The re-
into the morgue at Milton Keynes. sults look unnervingly like the toy
His first challenge is to spruce up a clown on the old BBC testcard, but
beloved 73-year old. “Don’t worry,” the presenter is inspired to give it
he assures the bereaved family, “I’ll a go himself when he gets back to



It’s been a busy year in the art world, nius.

with Tracey Emin’s “Every Positon I
Have Ever Been Fucked In” and Cor-
nelia Parker’s “The History of Scatol-
ogy” dominating media attention.
Damien Hurst’s latest exhibition
‘“Erocative” which opened last week
therefore had to have some serious
balls, and his showcase piece “Seven
colours of sin” (see right) delivers.
A thought provoking tribute to
Caravaggio’s “Salome with the Head
of John the Baptist (London)”, Hurst
overlays the horse to symbolise es-
cape: contrasted with the member
which represents both constrain-
ment and sin.
The exact meaning of the work,
especially the placement of the tip, is
heavily disputed by leading art his-
tory experts . However, what’s
clear is this is yet another stunning
example of Hurst’s utter fucking ge- “Seven colours of sin” is currently on display in the National
Gallery as part of Damien’s ‘Erocative’ exhibition


Glastonbury is set to release their cake. A very, very secret cake.” An unsung hero of Glastonbury,
line-up for the 2010 festival this Asked whether she thought that Mos Def’s sensational style and
Monday. Always closely guarded 300 jorunalists, 157 hours of formidable stage presence makes
until the last moment, the bill live BBC coverage and 200,000 him a titan of hip-hop.
for the special 40th Aniversary witnesses might already have Who couldn’t be in awe of his
concert will finally go public, let the cat out of the bag, Eavisphenomenal voice resounding
14 months after the 2009 stated that “we never comment on Gorillaz’s hit single Stylo,
festival closed its gates. Festival on rumours.” him moulding the song - surely
organiser Emily Eavis said it a guest appearance with them is
was all a matter of anticipation: a match made in heaven. But lest
“There has to be a build up. We us not devalue his spectacular
want people to get excited for it. ability to put on a show.
Glastonbury is about so much It’s been clear since his mind-
more than the music anyway - blowing collaboration album
the bands are just the icing on the Black Star (with Talib Kweli) that
Mos Def is a force to be reckoned
MH Exclusive: FB Chat interview with Glastonbury with. For my money ‘Oh No’ feat
headliner Stevie Wonder Pharoahe Monch and Nate Dogg
remains one of the best rap songs
Mostly Harmless: So Stevie, if I can call you that, how was headlining of all time. But despite being an
Glastonbury? amazing collaborator, the solo
work from Black on Both Sides
Stevie Wonder: erhu gdfjfgsdl dsfhj cshjl gdfjg fdsj to The Ecstatic is also formidable.
Unfortunately, Mos Def could
Mostly Harmless: Yeah we should have probably have done this by not attend Glastonbury due to a
phone family bereavement.


Editors: Jon Osborne, Alex Mason Thanks to: Joshua Dixon, Matthieu Miossec and Moray (for the
Artistic Editor: Dan Dyer cameron likeness), Matthew James, Maxime Dargaud-Fons, and
Head Photoshopper: Matthieu Miossec Mike Higgs.
Publishing: Sasha Magill
Treasurer: Hisham Alhassan Apologies and thanks to Evan Jones, Rachael Revesz, Sarah Brown
Sub-Editors: Alex Baker, Richard Hadden and Samantha all of whom we somehow forgot to thank in our last
Printed by Sharman&Co issue.
Mostly Harmless would also like to thank


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