The Worldwide Weblog of Donald Pincher

Blogged prose fiction by Joshua Gaskell


I am the WEBMASTER, and it is I that will be presenting to you, READER, the private journal of Donald Pincher, aspiring author. How I came to be possessed of it is no concern of yours. And in any case, if I did go about to tell you by what accident I obtained covert access to the file, it would in this unbelieving age pass for little more than the cant or jargon of the blogosphere. Suffice to say that he types Journal.doc on his computer (Windows ME) and, in his careless cyber-luddism, has left open a pathway vulnerable to exploitation by those of us who know the ways of data capture.
Pincher is a pious, small-c-conservative young fogey of the leftmost wing. He lives unfashionably in the London district of Forest Hill SE23, and devotes his life to writing entries in his Oxford Urban Dictionary, trying to find someone willing to publish his novel – five-hundred pages of relentless socialist manifesto masquerading as literature – and to being fruitlessly apoplectic about the price of things in the capital. A privacy obsessive, much of his novel consists of (in equal measure) decrying the dangers of the internet age, and mocking its pretentions. Which is why I thought it would be funny for him to write his own blog, even if it is one that he doesn’t know he’s writing.
Though the automatic-upload macro I’ve attached to Pincher’s journal makes me something of a deistical Prime Mover, I will occasionally deign to intervene in ‘the cool of the day’ (to footnote, to hyperlink, to tag, or otherwise curate). To this end you will know me by my dark-blue font.
Without further ado, I present to you what I’ve chosen to dub, in the idiom of its unwitting BLOGGER, The Worldwide Weblog of Donald Pincher

Thursday, 14th August 2014

An urgent message to those taxonomists of the genus Bollocks who have of late been throwing around the redundant and illiterate word behaviours, along with references to so-and-so exhibiting a desirable behaviour or an undesirable behaviour. The word behaviour is uncountable: ‘that cannot form a plural or be used with the indefinite article’ (OED). So unless you’re in a psychology seminar or an HR wankathon, be’ave!

Wednesday, 13th August 2014

I wonder if the right-on Scots who think the independence referendum is ‘nothing to do with’ the rest of Britain, would admit that by the same logic Palestine is nothing to do with them.

Tuesday, 12th August 2014

High-definition television is an exciting new technology that everyone must adopt post-haste. It’s like nothing you’ve ever experienced. Witness this paean to the innovation:

Other companies, too, may [...] be given similar opportunities of providing high-definition television apparatus for transmission experiments.

Except that was written in 1933, since when viewers have periodically been told that last year’s high-definition telly is no longer anything of the sort and that they need a new one. It is, as Sony put it themselves, make-believe.

Monday, 11th August 2014

Why is it that I am quite happy to eat the same breakfast and listen to the same songs again and again, yet the idea of forever eating the same dinner and watching the same episodes of a TV programme is so dreadful?

I’m inclined to think it’s because of the essential superiority of pop music to television and breakfast to dinner, meaning that neither of the former require the replumping of novelty. To break fast is always a renewal, and the pop song is the eternal youth of the arts.

Sunday, 10th August 2014

On the Overground I sit next to a middle-aged, professional-looking woman talking on her phone. All the way from New Cross Gate to Forest Hill she says but one word: ‘yep’. I assume one of her underlings is relaying information that she needs to okay. The frequency and regularity of her yeps is comical, as if with each one she is eating and logging the info: ‘Yep, yep, yep, yep, yep…’


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