Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Damned with faint praise

When I spoke about lunatics in California the other day (Is anybody out there?) I did not of course intend to slight the worthy citizens of the good old U.S.of A.

Even if I had so intended I couldn't possibly compete with the American comedian Rich Hall (he's the one that scowls lugubriously at everyone in the TV quiz show Q.I.). In his book 'Things Snowball' (ISBN 0349115109) he describes the denizens of Las Vegas (whom he earlier calls "fish-faced fossils") in these terms:-

'To walk the teeming pavements of this town is to battle a tide of slack-jawed human rodentia: a never-ending parade of grifters, drifters, alcoholics, hookers, scam artists, Prairie scum and California detritus, clutching their plastic cups of slot nickels, staring in bovine awe at the monuments of stucco and neon built for their Neanderthal amusement. Men in backwards-worn baseball caps, belt-buckles the size of bin lids, half-buried beneath cascading beer guts. Jiggly-arsed women with permanently toasted tumbleweeds of hair, frizzed out, teased up, bedecked in gold rope, their protoplasmic corpulent manatee-shaped bodies sheathed in shell suits...', and so on.

Gee-whiz, I'd love to hear him describe people he didn't like very much.

The fly-leaf of his book says that he now resides in London. I should think that's very wise.

Buy his book, we don't want to lose him.


  1. I love Rich Hall. He used to advertise a certain brand of Scottish whisky. I particularly liked the one where he's standing at the side of a loch, wearing a fox-fur davy-crocket style hat.

    He points to the hat and says: "Told my friends I was coming to Scotland and they said 'Wear the fox hat?'"

    Think about it.....

    It's a play on words about the Americans not knowing where Scotland is.

    Ali x

  2. Most people, when they hear my accent, assume I am Australian. When I politely correct them with a knee to the groin, and a few words to explain that I am from the Border between England and Scotland, most folks are amazed to find out that a border actually exists. They think Scotland is an Island somewhere off the English coast, and many think Ireland and Scotland are synonymous. Geography is not one of their strong points.

  3. Rich Hall is fabulous :-) His recent mini-docs on BBC 4 about Hollywood & The South were excellent; and his stand-up is woprth going to see too :-)
    Americans don't know where anything is, bless 'em :-)