Not so refreshing.
IT'S been a while since the 'Radgie Gadgie' had an outing, that inner, angry middle aged Geordie bloke who takes on the wrongs of modern life and hurls them nonchalantly to ground like a chav discovering salad on his kebab!
I have chosen a selection of random annoyances (politics excluded) that have had me shouting at the telly or sticking my heed out of car window recently.
Here goes .... firstly, the very laws of time and space seem to conspire against us; in a month that's as full as a hermit's address book, the only three social things you are invited to will all take place on the same freakin' night. You will then commit yourself to the one that's cancelled or turns out to be exciting as David Beckham reading a phone book out loud.
Similarly, time and space will warp and bend to make meetings and training days at work move as slowly as Mike Ashley in a transfer window.
You will actually feel your hair and fingernails grow as the mumbling fool from human resources reads documents to you - word for word. We can read pal...at least try and deliver it in a funny voice - maybe Zippy or Bungle off Rainbow or Mr T off the A-Team? Another evil is the conspiracy to sell food and drink at prices that were last seen in 1920s Germany, where a wheelbarrow of cash bought a loaf of bread. How can multiplex cinemas, for example, charge prices that mean the average parent has to sell a kidney for a Fanta, some M&Ms and some popcorn that's been there since the original 'Toy Story'? On a similar vein - or more accurately, train - I still wonder if buffet car attendants actually receive specialist training that allows them to keep a straight face when finally telling you how much that cup of tea actually cost? We all know the going rate for a teabag and some hot water and it certainly doesn't come close to the extortionate amount that the bloke in the Postman Pat trousers and 70s school shirt has just uttered. Indeed the rail barons haven't even the decency to rip you off at a proper counter any more - we are faced with that monstrous wheeled buffet thing that looks like a hospital mortuary trolley with Pringles and Kit Kats dangling off it.
Admittedly, you might get some canny lass with a cheeky smile to serve your 10 quid tea, but you know she hasn't got the strength to push it properly or safely.
In her hazardous journey between first class and coach 'B' she will carry our more knee-cappings than a 1970s IRA unit whilst chirpily asking you for the right change during your punishment.
Then there's the poor bloke who has gone for a jimmy in the only working nettie four carriages away, only to find his way blocked by the aforementioned mortuary/snack trolley.
He's now stuck there for an hour and a half while the party of 40 Scandinavian students pay individually for their crisps using their credit cards.
Finally, I blow my nose in the general direction of those parasites who run the cash points at motorway service stations. They know you will be stressed, bursting for the loo and pestered by the bairns who want to buy some kets from a shop that makes the one in the cinema seem like Poundstretcher. It's like going to a loan shark... you have no choice but to get the readies and you are in no position to say no to the PS1.99 protection money at the end of the 'transaction'.
To add insult to injury they offer you a 'free' printed balance as you leave the scene of the mugging; worse, you can't even afford some sweets for the rest of the trip....as you've just bought a cup of tea.
| Mike is performing in a benefit gig for Percy Hedley school at the Stand comedy Club on July 17.
How do buffet car attendants keep a straight face while telling