A Sinking Feeting Feeling

Washing Feet in the Sink is Prohibited. This notice, stuck on the wall in the gent's lavatory in the Doha Stufital's 2nd floor club more or less sums up the difference between said Stufital and the Paranormal. In Paranormal, we know how to behave acceptably badly without being told. In Stufital, the clientèle (who have never, till now, been graced with a French epithet) have to be told how badly not to behave. But let's spare an ounce of consideration for the Stufital Outlets Management who, apparently, have not yet conquered the subtle distinction between sinks and basins (they're French, after all) but have espoused the 'show, don't tell, but then tell it anyway, just in case' maxim of public communication. They consistently book excellent bands, so all is forgiven.


  1. R.E, Helga and her chickens Being a regular patron of the para I have sat and watched the coming and goings of the para these last few years, I have seen relationships bloom and loves lost , I think it is time for an update on Helga and her brood her chickens have grown up and flown the coop Helga is not the women she used to be albeit in size she still is, but she as lost a bit of her glamour it does not shine as much as it used to she is not the proud matriarch of old sat surveying her small kingdom I think in the last month or so I have probably seen her three of four times the times they are a changing Having sampled the voluptuous delights of helga after one extremely heavy night of self indulgence I ended up in her den of iniquity in darkest deira I could not miss a chance to comment on her red silk sheets Very Kitsch they are indeed she is very proud of these sheets I know this because she was quick to remove them at the ungodly hour of 8.00 am on a Friday morning while trying to extract a not to small sum of money from yours truly, I think she was a small bit worried about stains from my bodily secretions or maybe she was just preparing for her next “guest”

  2. All of which is true. Helga on her bar stool with her Chickens around the central pillar were very much the Paranormal nightly scene until about a year and a half ago. But as you say, many have moved on, and Helga is not Queen Bee any more. Rather like sports stars, these ladies' working lives are brief and their best seasons may number only one or two. But also like sports stars, there is plenty of new talent snapping at the heels. About a year ago, I suggested that the Paranormal was staging, in miniature, an enactment of the power struggle between People's Republic of China and the Former Soviet Empire. In Paranormal, as in the wider world, I think we can see who is winning. No surprise!

  3. For the record, here was my prediction of the Sino-Soviet power struggle.

  4. Being French, the management should have first and foremeost thought of prohibiting the washing of you-know-what in the 'sink'.

    After all, that's what the basins in the more salubrious French hotel rooms around Gare du Nord are mostly used for. Or so I am told.

  5. Personally, in my office, we had to explcitily prohibit the taking of showers in toilet cubicles by means of ablution hoses.

  6. Nick - you conjure up some images worthy of Paranormal - thanks for dropping by!

  7. Yes, that was indeed a paranormal image conjured up before me when I first opened that cubicle door. But I could deduct the actions of the previous occupier from the footprints on the toilet seat.

    (..or were you talking about the French basins - installed as it were at adequate height?)

  8. Does the stuff-it-mall require some PR?

    Since nick has announced his presence on your blog, perhaps some bog construction advice would not go amiss.

    I sense a potential 3-way partnership duo, provided the Scots would agree.

  9. i*,

    You work in PR? Who would have guessed!

  10. nick, don't be stoopid

    Just coz I mentioned PR doesn't mean I work in it. That said, anyone can work in PR in Dubai innit! Err...actually, just about any job in Dubai requires minimal qualifications...

    I'm a housewife.

    P.S. I took the "don't be stoopid" line from one of Shania Twain's songs. The next line is "ya know I love you"

  11. The Doha Stufital is right in the middle of the old city centre. Most of the surrounding buildings would be none the worse of a good demolition. But, like Dubai, the interest is all in building the city outwards. The old centre is largely being left to decay. Long may this continue :)

  12. Ouch about the French bits in the comments ;)

  13. Bridget - we can't always know where the comments will go ;)

    i*maginate - Stufital = Sofitel, but I'm sure you knew that :)

  14. After a few reads I discovered I had a few Paranormal Pictures stashed away, sort of "Life at the Jock's Table"

    Posted them on Hardship Posting, including the Bunnet Man Horizontal!

  15. Dilligaf - yep, these seem fairly typical . . . Thanks!

  16. Ah, I think Helga is contemplating early retirement. Can't imagine it will be pipe & slippers by the fire though.

  17. Who the heck is Helga? And her chickens. I'm lost. Me thinks i*maginate smoked a spliff too many.

  18. It's what happens when one responds to a BJ.

    Spliffs are out of the question, I like a strong whisky and prefer to drink it with a straw.

  19. Nick - 'who the heck is Helga' must rank with 'who the f**k is Alice'. We don't do real names here, but replace the 'He' of Helga with any single letter you can think of that rhymes with 'go' and you might come close. If in trouble, search the Alphabet between N and P, ok? About two/three years ago, Helga was an institution in herself, and her 'chickens' were the light of the night. Things change. But we soldier on, and on, and on . .

  20. After having some fine Scotch, I have reposted my comment, with some edits.

    "Stuff-it-mall, did you think I didn't know-it-all?

    Alas, she is on holiday, or so one might think."

    Cheers to Helga and her chickens.

  21. i*maginate -
    Most whiskies (taken neat) are pretty strong (all about 40% ABV), but if you're into strong whiskies, try a Talisker, from the Isle of Skye. Peaty, smokey, and bottled at 46.8%. A pleasing wee tipple :)

  22. paraglider,

    You are a man of the world. Talisker rocks. Personally I am a Dhalwinniie or Glenmorangie (Madeira wood) person.

    Although, during one particlarly memorable knees-up in Portree's main saloon I was taught to drink sinlge malts with a shot of spring water, not straight. It unlocks the flavour, apparently.
    And it lasts longer.

    Or they just took the piss...

  23. I'll take mine either neat or sometimes with a drop of water. Ice is for Americans and lemonade for ladies ;)

  24. I reposted my comment...

    Was just saying re: Isle of Skye, I recall getting lost there on a geog. trip - it was a strange experience having to take a ferry to get there...once we reached it was just weird to be there, quite scary in fact that one part of the island was named "Cowes".

    Too young to understand the significance of Helga, but the chips tasted good.

    Soggy chips with salt and malt (vinegar) ;-)

    And...I just noticed a gentleman in the background of the pic in the post. Wonder who that could be...

    Has your writing appeared in those newsletters of late?

  25. If you ever go back to Skye, you can drive now - there's a new bridge. Hmm, that would seem to be the photographer, replete with yellow shirt!

  26. Skye...not any time soon!

    Would lurve to go to "Scawt-land" some time though!

    I like the yellow shirt, not an easy colour to get away with :)

  27. And you two nothern blokes better get your suggestions right, for us southern peeples don't like ginger drinks (jokes aside).

    We like the clear diet 7-up (branded as "7-up free" nowadays)

    Cheers, me northern dears!

  28. i*migdet,

    Cowes I believe is on the Isle of Wight, off the West Sussex coast.

    Not one of those Inner Hybrid isles. As it were.

  29. But we have a heart for the southern beeple.

    Here's tae ye.

  30. Well, this is good - the first topic here to cross the 30 comments mark. Especially as I'm still repining in Blighty. And wondering what happened to the sun.

  31. I'm still trying to get my head around the original post by Chokdeekap who suggested he had "done the dirty" with Helga.

    I only know off one other who, with a penchant for "chubbies" took use of her services. I believe he required psychiatric care for a while afterwards.

    You are a braver man then me CDK, I salute you!

    Note, I wa sure I had a picture of Helga's mobile in it's "holders" but I can no longer find it. Bugger!

  32. prick, I wasn't baying attention on the geog trip: but I recall Cowes is a section (rather than an island) within the Cows of Skye.

    Don't you dare liken me to a midget, esp. when the nick is stolen from a fellow Syrian construction worker.

    I might be taller than the ginger drink you live off in your coke breaks, which is why you might, after all, like me.

    *paraglider, a 1000 line-mark is acheivable if nick has enough ginger bevvies to avail of.

    I might add to those lines if we can expect a pink shirt next time!

  33. There would seem to be some confusion, possibly between Cowes on the Isle of Wight and perhaps the Cuillins, the mountain range on the Isle of Skye.

    As for CDK, no doubt he was just helping Helga to move house ;)

  34. Helga is apparently in hospital in Dubai in a very serious condition.

    More to follow when I know more.

  35. paraphrase - very sorry to hear that. If you do hear more, please do let us know.

  36. A couple of Brooding Hens crossed the creek to Buggles this afternoon.

    Through their Smirnoff haze we were led to believe Helga is in a coma...

    Wishing her all the best, and will let you know of further developments.

  37. Paraphrase - that's very bad news, but thanks for keeping us updated. Poor Helga. Let's hope she gets through this OK.


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