The Idiot Gardener

WARNING: This site contains information on gardening, brewing, curing meat,

building shit and hunting, all done in a piss-poor manner. It is not suitable for the

feeble-minded, the weak and lame, those of a nervous disposition, vegans and

vegetarians (and those other ones that only eat fish and the occasional bacon

sandwich - I think they're called 'hypocrites'), those who practice any

manner of folk singing or dancing, people named Colin or fans of Barry Gibb.


spadeI am an idiot! You probably had no intention of arguing the point, but just in case you were going to, don’t.

I have a slight problem. In my mind, there’s not much that isn’t doable. I figure that if other people can do things – and I understand that some of the people that do these things are morons with the manual dexterity of a house brick – then I can do them too. I’m not talking about creating a rocket and carrying out a manned mission to Mars; I’m an idiot, not delusional! No, I’m talking about things that humanity has learned to do over the years.

I grow stuff. It all started in a drunken haze. I went from garden hater to idiot gardener in one afternoon of beer. I only grow stuff I can eat. I’m not a natural gardener, more a ‘chuck it in and see what happens’ sort. I’ve also built my own raised beds, superbeds (they’re just raised beds with hinged roofs) and greenhouse. I made it up as I went along. I know very little about gardening or building stuff. Who cares? I recently acquired Five Acres of Idiocy. It’s a fucking train wreck!

I brew beer. I just got fed up of tasteless and bland brews. If it’s called Hoppy Ale, and you’ve put a picture of hops on the label, I am going to be pissed off when I can’t taste any hops. I’ll be in a worse mood if it also tastes like piss.  I hate pissy hopless ditch water, or Stella Artois to you. All my beers are my own recipes (and are named after apes, because I like apes). What do I know about brewing? About the same as I know about gardening. That said, I’ve only ever thrown one batch of beer away. Well, half of it, but there’s only so much mouldy beer you can drink!

I cure and smoke meat. I make sausages. I seek to learn the art of the charcutiere. Why? Because the pig has a magic power, and it’s hidden somewhere in its fat and skin and snout and trotters and uterus. I know that I know nothing about charcuterie, and I also know that a mistake can kill you, so I tend to read copious works from experts in the field, and then change everything I’ve read to suit my interpretation of things. Is that dangerous? I’m still alive, and only reveal recipes that didn’t kill me (or anyone else)!

I cook. That does have a story. Whilst at college I went for a holiday job as a kitchen porter. I told a waitress I was there for an interview. I overheard the manager ask her which job. He said, ‘If it’s the kitchen porter job, tell him it’s gone. If it’s the chef job, don’t let him leave. I lied. The chef realised I was a fraud, but needed help so she taught me a few things, and we got through a Christmas and New Year without killing anyone. I learned to love cooking.

I play clawhammer banjo. I am not very good at it.

I recently have taken up hunting. Why? Why not! It gets me out in the fresh air, when I’m not doing other things out in the fresh air. I have invested heavily in this new element of my life, and have thus far eaten two rabbits and a single collared dove. I reckon each meal cost around £300. I doubt I will ever break even.

I have stumbled upon these passions somewhat haphazardly, almost accidentally in fact. My prime motivation has typically been brought about by the shit state of affairs that afflicts the modern world, including tasteless food and drink, bad service and mass-produced crap to serve the dull tastes of the general hordes. Oh, and a fair degree of drunkenness

I like apes.

I am unlikely to change.


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