Weekender

The Weekender features the best work, the most brilliant arts writing and some of the more, ahem, irreverent things that dance across our desktops in any given week. All hail the weekend!

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    Since copy and pasting the lyrics to The Spice Girls’ Mama a few weeks back, I kind of can’t resist doing it again. Instead of writing some quirky intro using my BRAIN i’m just going to copy and paste a quirky intro using my INTERNET. Without further ado, here’s a snippet of the lyrics to The Sugababes’ 2005 hit, Push The Button (they are back together, after all)

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    If The Weekender had a hammer, he’d hammer in the morning, he’d hammer in the evening, he’d hammer out danger, he’d hammer out a warning, between his brothers and his sisters all over this land. But The Weekender has made some questionable financial investments at the recommendation of some shady mobsters and now he doesn’t have a hammer at all. In fact The Weekender doesn’t have anything anymore (thanks bailiffs!) except an internet connection and a knackered Dell laptop that he uses to scour the web for all sorts of hilarious jollity. Want to see what he’s found this week? Yeah you do. Course you do. There’s literally nothing else better to spend your time on right now…

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    It’s Mothering Sunday this weekend (yes, it’s too late to send a card, you’ll have to send a text again like last year) so the intro to this Weekender is Mother’s day themed. What could possibly sum up the tender, relentless love of a mother and child relationship than the fascinating lyrics of The Spice Girls’ 1996 club banger Mama:

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    Lately, I have become fascinated by provocative US pop sensation Ke$ha. After some careful study of her lyrics, I feel she may be a genius. You know how surprising it is to find out Shakespeare coined so many common phrases? Well I think Ke$ha has similarly lofty linguistic ambitions. Take her name for example – this isn’t a typo SHE ACTUALLY SPELLS IT LIKE THIS. Maverick. She also uses phrases like “sick and sexified.” In centuries to come we’ll all be saying that the whole time and someone smug will say: “You know it was Ke$ha who coined that.” You heard it hear first. Where was I? Oh right, The Weekender…

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    It’s a tough old world we live in right? Every day it seems we’re teetering on the brink of destruction from forces both internal and external. The government doesn’t seem to give two hoots about our wellbeing, our mums won’t return our calls, and how about that asteroid that almost destroyed Russia? All this crap is starting to make us feel a little bit paranoid. But that’s not even the half of it, what about those guys on Youtube that dislike the World of Warcraft video tutorials we uploaded, and don’t even get us started on the Twitter backlash we have to deal with when we’re not quite as funny as we’d like to think. Still thank the lord we’ve got The Weekender to ease away the stresses and strains of modern living and let us know that everything’s going to be alright…

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    I know what you’re thinking, you’re thinking “Where does The Weekender go from Monday morning through to Friday afternoon?” and you know what, you’re right to wonder. It’s quite the conundrum! But in the same way that you ponder as a child where babies come from, only to be reviled by the answer when your poor hounded father finally reveals the secrets of procreation, discovering the day-to-day habits of the world’s favourite weekly, whimsical culture roundup will only leave you feeling sad, hollow and ultimately disappointed. So call off that private investigator, put down your binoculars and stop following The Weekender around like a creep (don’t think we won’t issue a restraining order). That’s better. Now let’s get on with dishing out the good stuff….

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    The best baddie in cinematic history is not Darth Vader or Blofeld, oh no, it’s Shooter McGavin from Happy Gilmore. Just as you’re about ready to mentally kill the actor that plays Shooter purely because of his character, this bit of dialogue happens that suddenly makes you realise he’s not worth your time. Happy and Shooter are arguing and Shooter goes “Just stay out of my way… or you’ll pay! Listen to what I say!” only for Happy to reply “Hey, why don’t I just go eat some hay, make things out of clay, lay by the bay? I just may! Whaddya say?” which is basically the best comeback line in history. Take the feeling of that triumphant moment, times it by eleven, and that’s how good The Weekender is.

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    Hold on to your hats kids, we’re coming to the end of a MASSIVE week and The Weekender’s gearing up for a proper bender. There’s a birthday going on at Weekender HQ and the party rings and punch are in full swing. But what’s that, you wish there was some way you could be more involved? Well let me tell you something, you can! Come on in, there’s no guest list on the door of this friendly shindig – but there is a massive bouncer ready to nut you one in the face if you misbehave. Don’t misbehave.

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    Hey little boy, watcha got there? Kind sir it’s The Weekender I’ve found. Did you find it in the sandy ground? No, I found it strapped onto the back of a daily art and culture website, lurking. Oh. What does it do? I’m not sure yet, but it seems to enjoy regaling people with tales of the week that was, and making them laugh in a guilty way. Not a full-blown guttural laugh, but a kind of embarrassed, knowing snigger. Sounds good yeah? YEAH! YEEAAAAAAHHHHH!

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    “I hear the drums echoing tonight, but she hears only whispers of some quiet conversation. She’s coming in 12:30 flight, the moonlit wings reflect the stars that guide me towards salvation. I stopped an old man along the way hoping to find some old forgotten words or ancient melodies. He turned to me as if to say… " I’m gong to have to stop you there Toto, what the hell are you talking about? It may have been the 1980s when you wrote this drivel but your nonsense lyrics and harassing of geriatric passers-by is unacceptable by today’s standards. Leave that poor old man alone and come with me, The Weekender, purveyor of joyful nuggets and the gatekeeper of Saturday and Sunday. I’ve got a lesson to teach you…

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    Lean back and close your eyes, block out any extraneous noises and focus on being calm. I’m going to take you deep into your subconscious to help you reveal your inner Weekender. As the silence and calm envelops you I want you to imagine the most shameful event in your life, the soiled jeans or public nakedness that still haunts you while you sleep. Grab hold of that event with both hands, hold it aloft and tell it that it doesn’t define you, it can’t own you and it will never bring you down. SNAP! Now open your eyes and think about the stupid thing you’ve just done. What’s wrong with you? This is The Weekender and your wilful introspection isn’t welcome here. Now pick up your damp trousers and join me in the land of frivolity and joy. Shabba!

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    Here are The Weekender’s New Year resolutions in no particular order. 1. Exercise more. 2. Cut down on cheese consumption (goat/sheep, not cow). 3. Keep old love letters, throw away old bank statements. 4. Quote Baz Luhrmann’s Sunscreen wherever practical. 5. Spend less time obsessing over the finite nature of human existence and the overwhelming futility of life. 6. Floss. 7. Master the Charleston. 8. Marry someone (as in perform the ceremony). 8. Entertain, inform and get away with it. Challo!

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    Now that you’ve stuffed your face with more turkey than you’d normally touch in a year, sluiced it down with champagne, wine, port and coffee, passed wind in front of your relatives with a flagrant disregard for common courtesy and kicked back on the sofa with only the twentieth re-run of The Great Escape you’ll see in your life, you’ve got a bit of a problem – what the hell else are you going to do with the rest of Christmas day?

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    The end of the week is a cause for celebration for most of us, but spare a thought for those who help make our weekends extra special. I’m talking about the bar staff, the taxi drivers, and cheery kebab vendors who help our end of week plans come to fruition. So if you’re heading out tonight maybe on a Christmas do (Martin from accounts was TOTALLY checking you out by the way) then give them a smile and help brighten up their weekend too. This is for them…

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    So two and a half weeks to the big day people. Now you know The Weekender is your pal, it’s not here to tell you what to do, rather just maybe give you a nudge in the right direction. But you’ve got two days off after this and THERE”S LOADS TO DO. Ok, sorry, I didn’t mean to panic you. It’s fine, plenty of time just get the food sorted. And the presents. And cards (everyone you know or have ever met should cover it). You’ll need decorations. And a tree, obviously. Oh and you need to get all this done in and among the many, many parties organised on the most joyously spurious “festive” grounds; “Penultimate Tuesday before Christmas drinks anyone? Mine’s a pint…” Dance to my merry tune…

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    The secrets of The Weekender’s relentless energy and encyclopaedic knowledge of whimsical internet detritus have long been the subject of much debate, but have remained a closely guarded secret. Until now. You see, The Weekender exists in a state of perpetual hyperactivity, brought about by a regimented diet of caffeine pills, chocolate milk and Jammy Dodgers. In this heightened state of awareness it reclines in the centre of a multi-screen interface that bombards it with meme after meme of Paris Hilton photographs, Rick Astley and cats. You thought it was all fun and games over at The Weekender’s house right? Wrong, this is a serious business. Laugh with me!

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    This week was Thanksgiving over in the good ole U S of A and so The Weekender decided to make a list of the things it was truly thankful for. Unfortunately after several hours’ meditation on the subject it was left with a piece of paper with the phrase “jacket potatoes” scrawled in one corner, which was just a bit sad. So here’s some things the Weekender is kind of grateful for if you really twisted its arm – 1. Gin (delicious) 2. That lions are either quite rare or in zoos (scared of lions) 3. Table tennis (I’d beat you) 4. Gin (again) and 5. Laser Quest (makes an ace birthday party). Onto this nonsense…

  18. Weekendermain

    Hey gang. How’s your week been going? Really? You did what? You filthy, filthy devil. That’s right, The Weekender’s back, and it’s going to smash into your bewildered face just like the hangover’s probably going to tomorrow morning. Until then, onwards to our doom…

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    This week in America some people said they wanted a new man to be the leader but more people said they wanted the man who’s already the leader to keep being the leader for a bit longer. This fundamentally simple process became a bit more than that though as first of all the two sets of people were VERY SURE they were each right, and the rest of the world piled in on the Twitter telling them which man to pick. To mark this historic moment, The Weekender this week is donning its cowboy hat and whitening its teeth to bring you a US election special (although as ever these constraints may prove to be quite loose…)

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    You know, The Weekender reminds me of that kid (there’s always one) who soiled himself in assembly. Whilst you don’t want to be anywhere near the crime scene, you still want a piece of the action, and you don’t really know why it’s so funny. Well, just as Tommy Shat-Pants will go down in history for his accidental bravery (or just get picked up by his mum at morning break) so will The Weekender, in all its strange strange glory.

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    The Weekender likes to think of itself as a cosmopolitan kind of weekly culture round-up, attending all sorts of trendy parties and hobnobbing with young, attractive folks. It reckons it’s the life and soul of the party, the teller of the best jokes and the mixer of the best cocktails around (it calls itself a mixologist). But the truth is The Weekender is the loudmouth in the corner that nobody actually invited, recounting garbled, bitter anecdotes about how handsome it used to be with its mouth full of Special Brew and its beard full of crumbs. But whatever, who cares. The Weekender’s throwing its own party right here, right now and you’re all ruddy invited. So come on in and have some fun – the Special Brew’s on us!

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    With winter drawing in, The Weekender has decided it’s about time it got a mate, a fellow whimsical culture round-up with whom to share days out, nights in and sushi binges. To this end The Weekender has been to see a flirting expert and is going to try out some of its new tricks on our dear readers if that’s ok (which we’re sure it is!). So here goes – Hello. I’m The Weekender (points at your shoes with whole arm) I like your shoes. Do you like days out, nights in and sushi binges? (Points at your hair with both arms) I like your hair. Do you want to see my room? – and scene! Money well spent I’m sure you’d agree. Bring on the nonsense!

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    “I am James, prince of The Weekender and defender of the secrets of witty cultural humour. This is Liv, my fearless friend. Fabulous secret powers were revealed to me the day I held aloft my magic keyboard and said, “By the power of It’s Nice That! I have the power!” Liv became the mighty Laughter Cat, and I became Weekender-Man, the most powerful man in the universe! Only one other shares this secret — our friend, Rob Alderson, but he’s away in Turkey. Together we defend friday afternoon from the evil forces of boredom." And erm… that was how The Weekender was born. Or was that He-Man?

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    “Hey, what’s wrong with you? You’re looking kind of down to me. ’Cause things ’aint getting over. Listen to what I say.” As a bright-eyed young teen The Weekender used to rush around the playground singing those thought-provoking lyrics to all the other kids, beckoning them to gather round and listen to its wisdom. But the children used to kick The Weekender in the shins and tell it to sod off. Not anymore, not now that The Weekender has a cult international following and a harem of sexy young women hanging off it’s every word (it DOES!). Things have changed. Bring it on…

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    There’s no denying it any longer. It’s time for The Weekender just to put this out there and be who it really is. Tired of living a lie, of conforming to the “norms” of “society” it is time to reclaim myself and hang the consequences. Ready? My name is The Weekender and I prefer mandarins to clementines. Take that The Man! Here goes nothing…

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    And so The Weekender sent down some tablets onto which were scribed the Ten Commandments of Weekenderism. 1. Be nice. 2. Be creative. 3. Make coffee sometimes. 4. Do exercise. 5. Don’t be a ruddy idiot. 6. Smile. 7. Sing. 8. Laugh until you snort. 9. Laugh at other people for snorting thus exacerbating their laughter.10. Read The Weekender EVERY Friday and tell your pals about it. And the people rejoiced and made a massive statue out of fudge in celebration. here ends the lesson. Boom!

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    The Weekender is a big believer in karma. Just the other day a woman stopped me in the street and asked me for a pound to help her get home. Of course I gave her one, at which point she spat in my face and ran off into a pub. Karma eh? Have I got this right? Bring on the nonsense!

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    This weekend sees the official end of our Olympic summer here in London and we’re not going to lie, it’s been quality. London became an unrecognisable bastion of smiley, happy people and we all cavorted around the city in a newfound spirit of fraternity and respect. Will it last? Will it heck. But The Weekender is humbly putting itself forward to take up the baton (little athletics metaphor there) and become the focus of worldwide attention until Rio 2016. Not out of an inflated sense of self importance (perish the thought) but out of duty. Think about it world, yeah? Let’s delve…

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    Outgoing, professional (ha!) weekly nonsense round-up WLTM readers for fun and frolics. Enjoys silly Tumblrs, picnics where all the food is one colour and bear-baiting. Looking for a vivacious, saucy partner with own teeth (negotiable) and segway (non-negotiable). Willing to travel (if you cover reasonable expenses for bus fares, Fishermen’s Friends and paper). No timewasters or vertigo sufferers (I have my reasons). Call me!

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    The Weekender is no prude, it enjoys a bawdy limerick as much as the next weekly irreverence round-up. But I don’t mind admitting the constant discussion of Prince Harry’s crown jewels has all got a bit much. Amid all the discussion about the press being muzzled (love that verb) in not printing the pictures, there’s one thing NOBODY is talking about. Well The Weekender will not be cowed and is just going to come right out and say it. What on earth is strip billiards? Of all the strip-based games who picks billiards? What Las Vegas hotel suite has a billiards table? I’m going to get to the bottom of this if it kills me. Ever onwards…

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    Hang out the bunting and uncork the cava (I’m not made of money)– we’re celebrating! It’s one year since The Weekender first came into the world and it’s fair to say we’ve had 12 months of super-fun silliness. It’s been a joy and an honour filling your Friday afternoons with the finest stuff and nonsense we come across and we hope you’ve enjoyed it too. Three cheers for bizarre videos, ridiculous Tumblrs and crazy-good creative work! Let’s make some magic, birthday style…

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    How awesome are NASA? They seem to have been quite quiet over the past few years and then all of a sudden they pop up and tell us that they’ve landed a little camera-explorer thing (technical term) on Mars. The photos they beamed back were pretty cool but it strikes me that someone in Team Curiosity missed an absolute belter of a prank opportunity (prankortunity) by not superimposing a tiny Welsh flag or a box of Pringles in one corner. Hang on, what if Mars sees this as an invasion? What if this is seen as Earth’s hubristic highpoint after which we are all enslaved by Martian overlords? The Weekender is taking no chances. So long, and thanks for all the fish.

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    Something odd is happening in London. After weeks of frothing at the mouth about transport meltdown and everyone being sued for doing anything marginally Olympics related (“I heard their going to sue frogs for JUMPING!!”) the British media has had to grudgingly concede that it’s actually been kind of great. The transport seems ok, frogs are legally unmolested and we’re winning a few medals (admittedly in sports where you sit down but still..). So, happy to jump on the passing bandwagon of Games-based bliss, The Weekender is, like Sanka in Cool Runnings, feeling very Olympic today…

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    There’s a thing going round at the moment, popular with advertisers and Twitter wags where you pretend you’re talking about the Olympics by saying something like “All eyes will be on east London tonight for an iconic event sure to attract thousands of fans” and then at the last moment you reveal that it wasn’t the Olympics at all by saying “…IT”S MY BIRTHDAY” or “DO THE LOTTERY” and everyone congratulates you for being hilarious and carries you shoulder-high through a joyous throng of well-wishers. So everyone ready? “I am sure you’ve been waiting for today for years but it’s finally here to put an end to the speculation and anticipation…” wait for it, “IT’S THE WEEKENDER!” Hahahaha, oh mercy!

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    If I had a hammer. I’d hammer in the morning. I’d hammer in the evening. All over this laaaaaaaaaand. I’d hammer out danger. I’d hammer out a warning. I’d hammer out love between my brothers and my sisters. All over this laaaaaaaaand. Ok couple of quick things. Is a hammer really the best tool through which to show worldwide love? And why aren’t you hammeirng in the afternoon? Lazy. Here comes trouble…

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    Turn up the volume, pump up the jams, lights out, gorilla radio, come with us, I’ve got the poison, I’ve got the remedy, but no sympathy for the devil. Yeah you heard me, I’m coming at you with musical references you probably don’t even understand. Deal with it. What’s that, you’re completely, unashamedly confused by what’s going on right now? That can only mean one thing. The Weekender.

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    The Weekender is a pretty jazzy affair right? It’s that time of the week when we like to let our hair down a little and have some good old-fashioned fun. Sure sometimes it gets out of hand, people get hurt and occasionally there’s tears before the week is out. But that’s what it’s all about, taking the rough with the smooth, the ups with the downs, the spice of ruddy life. This week however we’ve decided to take things a bit more seriously, so we’ve got some existential poetry, an in-depth examination of the current economic climate and Proust’s entire works translated into latin…. Nah just kidding, on with this nonsense!

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    The Weekender is a simple creature with straightforward needs. Fed and watered a couple of times a day, a good brisk walk and a never-ending stream of whimsical, vaguely creative nonsense and he/she’s a happy boy/girl. But cage him/her in and he/she will come back harder, better, faster and stronger than you could ever imagine. Everyone clear, yeah? Yeah??? Good. Let’s do this…

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    The Weekender is painfully aware of the awfulness of the humble brag – an insidious attempt by a person (often on social media) to prove that their life is better than yours (they can teach you, but they’ll have to charge) usually cloaked in some thin veneer of modesty. There’s even a Twitter account set up to collate the best examples, such as: “Why is it that every time I have a softball game someone walks up to me and says , are you on roids ! Hahaha dude I don’t even lift weights.” Quite.

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    Aside from serving you fine folk up with regular artsy-weird-whimsy, The Weekender is a big fan of jogging and can often be found pootling up down the Thames path drinking in the views and staving off a heart attack. Almost without fail while out running, someone will shout “Run Forest Run!” at me, it could be a tramp, some yobs or even a street entertainer angling for a cheap laugh (which they usually get). Now The Weekender can take a joke (kind of) but this just seems baffling. All this “joke” does is reference an old film where someone also does some running. If you pass an off duty soldier you don’t shout Apocalypse Now! because they’re also wearing camouflage. If you see a potentially lost child you wouldn’t scream Home Alone and then high five a passer-by. Actually maybe some of you would. To business!