Friday, 20 July 2012

WhileYou Were/Are Sleeping (Pick up the slack you loafer!)

  It's weird to me how one second your all up and awake and walking around doing stuff then for some crazy reason your body weakens and wants to lie down in a dust mite metropolis and go offline for hours on end. Its called sleep and we all do it, all animals anyway and I think that I've even seen microbes and bacteria catch a few winks on disease documentaries when you see them hanging out in the petrie dish in the lab.

  So apparently your body is tired and needs to rest but we still carry on doing some things in our sleep. Sleep talking, sleep walking, sleep peeing and sleep thinking (dreams people!) the sleepy time world is nearly as active as the waking world except it's lying down and has a lot more flannel clothing involved.

  If humans can do one or two functions already while sleeping I can't see why they can't sleep WORK also. Stuffing envelopes, folding clothes and knitting are just three great lying down jobs where you might earn a whole extra pay packet as you dream your little dreams PLUS you can talk and pee too, I'm not the boss of you, if you want to stretch your legs a go for a sleep walk on your own time no biggie here.

  I'm sure there's a dangerous cocktails of medicines and possible medical procedures on the brain to float this amazing plan of mine but I'm sure anybody who has partners with chronic snoring problems would be only too happy to volunteer their loved ones for run of trial experiments. 

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Keeping Up Affearences

  Here's some dumb/weird events that I think might happen in the future. I'm really hoping that if I share them here it might somehow disrupt some time space continuum and stop them from ever happening. Feel free to laugh but remember if you do and then in the future ever share a dumb fear with me I will dump a yoghurt over your head, this isn't a traditional form of mockery but one i just personally enjoy.

a) About once a week I imagine the Sun will have some sort of celestial coughing fit and blow all the atmosphere from the Earth, obviously then everything on the planet dies pretty much instantly after floating about for a second.

b) A time traveler pop in. This is the scenario where your having a completely normal day until a person from the future pops in and the I guess you have to entertain them somehow (tea?) and heed all their boring warnings about being greener in the home and all that jazz.

c) The magnetic poles switch. I've heard this happens every 100 000 years or so and it's no biggie but it sounds scary and so it bothers me plus how will whales and other animals that use magnetic currents know which way is what? A lot of angry confused creatures around I think.

d) No more free to air television. Not a colossal problem but even though 99% of free to air television is pure garbage it feels nice to get the 1% that I watch for free.  

  Ok, that's all for now, I do have more but I know a few of you will begin to worry about these also so I'll lay a few of them on you at a time.  

Friday, 15 June 2012

This is a Domestic Problem

 It's weird the animals that man/woman have decided to domesticate for eating purposes I think. Even if the can double up as work animals around the farm/village the choices that have been made are sub par at best.

 Chickens need clipping, debeaking and controlling in sheds and all that jazz fusion but the common Seagull is just as tasty and comes to you, or your rubbish tip anyways, that's food convenience everybody, when your meal flies in on it's own time and energy to be eaten on a day of your choosing!

 Ok so you say you want a working farm animal you can eat later? The wild boar fits the bill perfectly, much quicker than a horse for getting around and cheaper to feed also, sure they gore people a bit but that's just all part of their charm.

 Replace boring cod and perch species in the farm waterways with pink freshwater river dolphins, sure they're more expensive to purchase initially but now you have a tourist attraction as well as Friday night dinner AND you now have pink freshwater river dolphins, which is pretty cool!

 How many ants does is take to replace some roast beef in a sandwich? I'm not sure probably thousands but luckily there's no shortage of these protein packed mini morsels. Ant farms have been underused as children's toys for way too long. First you meet your pets kids, then you eat your pets kids, that's the thrifty way learn, have fun and avoid hunger at the same time. 

  As always, you are welcome for the tips. Please feel free forward on any delicious pink freshwater river dolphin recipes. 


Friday, 25 May 2012

Think Abouting Cursing Animals

  So I sort of caught a bit of a new story that says dogs can possibly think. This is really amazing but my main focus is that I wonder do they have doggy swear words? Probably, they do right? They have a lot to be angry about in their daily life like trespassers, empty food bowls, balls not moving, cats that are moving and so forth.

  Dogs must really be cursing people (and cats) out sometimes when they bark a lot and I find it harder to love an animal that uses so much bad language. Seeing eye dogs for the blind on the other hand don't bark so much, but you have to let you're feelings out at some point, I assume when their owner is asleep they unleash a mountain of swears into their dog blanket or pillow which allows them the release they don't get as trained professional people helping dogs.

  In America a lot of dogs like to swear/bark at squirrels, here in Australia it's more likely to be a snake or lizard, one way of building up a database of what bark means what is to analyse a lizard swear/bark and a squirrel swear/bark, then we would be well on the way to communicating with dogs and getting them to stop being jerks sometimes.

  Imagine if you could swear back at your dog in it's own language when it misbehaves? Raising your voice and swearing at children works so well I don't see why it wouldn't be as effective on your dog. It's early days but let's hope for a breakthrough in this new scientific field as swears in other languages are also fun to impress friends and relatives.

RUFF RUFF! ( I don't know what that means in Doggish but it's probably very rude)  

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Tom Scharpling comic book fan art.


 Here's a page of comic book art written by myself and drawn/inked by my comic book submission collaborator Bruce Lugli. It's to celebrate the genius of writer, broadcaster and comedian Tom Scharpling.

Hope you all enjoy it.

More comic book stuff from us:

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

It's Smaller World After All (My plans are implemented)

  I like foods that make me fat, but I don't like being fat! It's a problem as old as time(I can't back that up, so don't ask), we want what's bad for us and large amounts of it. That's why I'm proposing a nationalisation of the supply of sugar and fat by the government. We can't be expected to control our fat food dependancies on our own if all that's required to get our pudgey hands on it is by is trading money for these substances, proper control and distribution needs to be instigated and backed up by legislation. Apart from a population generally fitter, healthier and more productive we might actually end up with a defence force capable of invading and annexing New Zealand? Which is something that most Australians have had on their wish list since Papua New Guinea became independent.

  I know your thinking that a fat and sugar control program is a sugar free pie in the sky idea and could never get off the ground but consider all the other controlled substances found in chemists? That kind of works right? Under my program each person would get an photo identity card, children under 10 years old would be on their parents or guardians card, then it would as simple as calling into registered sugar or fat merchants to get your allowance each week. Non sugar/fat eating people would have to be on a separate data bank because they would be liable to become dealers of these substances after storing their allowances for a number of weeks. If they wanted to return to the fat foods eating community they would have to write a essay about how they'd like to start watching a lot of TV and such and such. 

  I know it's a harsh measure but desper-FAT times call for desperate measures. Keep these factors in mind: No Gym sessions, no cooking shows(containing sugar or fat which make you crave bad foods and bored to death), no exercise programs on TV, no advertisements for exercise equipment on TV, honestly, the benefits go on and on. The only negatives are that our private details will be tracked slightly more so by the government..who love us. After one year of this new regime anyone still deemed chubby or husky would be sent to New Zealand (which we have annexed by that point) to walk it off in the mountains searching for new or endangered Kiwi Bird species.

  Think you've skirted around my legislation by eating gallons of honey? Well all Bee hives would be surrounded by a electric fences Einsteins! 

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Well I Thought About the Army.

  Most boys and some girls at some stage go through a phase of playing armies, I guess it's something that you see on TV and in movies and think is really cool. This is just a reminder that real war can be fairly awful, there's bad food, noise, dust, lots of marching, tent erecting, gun cleaning and killing people plus your smart uniform gets all dirty and your Mum's not around to wash it for you! So the reality does not at all match up with the fantasy. This is the same with a number of childhood aspirations I eventually discovered. They seem awesome at first, then learning how to do the job is quite boring. I'll take you through a few professions that I was going to pursue as a child until effort rose it's fugly head.

Army Officer - As I found out this required going to some weird army university called Duntroon or something, I had 6 more years of school to complete at that point so the thought of doing more wasn't palatable. The army was then out, playing armies was still totally in though.

Park and Wildlife Officer - I love animals and wearing khaki shorts (even too this day) once again there was university to complete but I thought it might be easier because I knew a lot of the animals names already. Then I found out there was fencing and wooden hut building involved plus you might get posted to somewhere dusty which was kind of what I hated about the army i.e. getting my khaki shorts dirty.

Chef - This was realistically something I could do but then I figured out that someone has to do all the washing up from the cooking plus the restaurant. Would that be my job as a chef? I didn't know but I'd already washed enough dishes by the age of 10 to know I was definitely going to avoid it as a an adult. Being a Chef was too risky, think again Dan.

Astronaut - Too me this was like driving a car but in space and with rockets. I was never on board with all this going to the Moon business but shooting lasers from a safe distance at evil space aliens seemed a good way to earn a living and there was generally a uniform that was sometimes khaki. I then found out you had tone Russian or American to become an astronaut so that drew a line through that plan!

  So it was one crushing revelation after another on the career front for little Dan but then something wonderful happened, I found sport, but that's a whole different disappointing chapter.    

Friday, 6 April 2012

We'll Make Great Pets

  Life after aliens come and take over won't be as super fun as you might think, of course there will be no hunger and hover trains along with using their alternative energy technology will make day to day live much easier and cheaper (if they allow us to keep a monetary system?) but with every large change in the structure of society, a unique set of challenges is thrown up to overcome.

  Would you let your daughter marry an alien? I would, but then I'm not a hateful bigot, it's a good chance our friends from the stars are going to want to participate in our customs and dating/mating will be an area they may be really keen to get involved. Be careful how you react when your son brings home a young alien overlord for dinner as being vaporised in your own home is not the heartwarming last memories you want to provide to your family.

  I guess we'll all learn their language eventually, but for older humans that are a bit stuck in their ways expect to see a lot of vaporisation incidents after an alien has lost it's temper after having being repeatedly spoken to in a condescendingly loud voice in some customer service situation.

  While I'm on the subject of customer service, these organisms can't expect to take over a whole planet and that everything will run fine! I just hope they have the foresight to instigate an efficient customer/slave service program. I would assume feedback is essential when building a multi-planet slave corporation anyway.

  So there's a few bugs to work out but it's going to be great, and if an arriving alien needs to probe you don't be a big baby and cry about it, they're only doing their job.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Part 5 - It All Goes to Compost

  Recording for their first album went great, the boys spent each morning working in the tulip fields then after a hearty lunch took to the studio and recorded one awesome gardening themed track after another till 9p.m. when a cheese supper was served before bed. At the end of their stay at the farm the guys had a great debut album and a full understanding of modern tulip propagation, not to mention a fully recharged batteries that were ready to rock. 'Enough Grapefruits for the Whole Class?' debuted at Number 8 but after 2 weeks rose right to the Top of the Pops, the first wave of success is a crazy time for any musician and being Spring also for any young gardener as the boys were swamped with fan mail asking for autographs and seeds from a pumpkin grown by Brian himself were reportedly being sold on the black-market for 20 pounds each! On the back of this massive U.K. success 'Three Peas in a Pod' and the Captain set off to conquer America.

  Night after night, gig after gig the band covered the whole continental United States bravely keeping up the appearance of being a great young band on the rise but underneath a darker truth was starting to surface Ali had been sniffing fertiliser for years socially but with the enormous success of the group his ''hobby'' had now become a full blown addiction, Pots was also having his own problems after a trip to do a couple of shows in Hawaii he had met the girl of his dreams on a orchard plantation for a photo shoot and now he was backing touring all the time he had trouble focusing on the music and longed to get back to the islands again but Brian himself faced the most heinous challenge of all…fishing! During the Hawaii trip a local millionaire took the boys out on his yacht compelled to be a good guest Brian agreed to wet a line at his hosts request and found he really loved it. Brian now thought of only one thing, fish and fishing, sort of two things really. A blessing in disguise came when Ali burst through the door of the hotel the band was staying at in Acron, Ohio, ''He gone the bastard!'' he exclaimed, ''Who has?'' said Pots and Brian in unison, ''The Captain, he's been collecting our fees in cash and hiding it as padding in his scarecrow outfit, now he's skipped to Mexico to start some hydroponic business with all our money!''

  The boys said nothing, there was nothing to say, they knew the circumstances had colluded to end their musical dream. The boys finished their last six dates in America which gave them just enough money to get back to the U.K. except for Pots he headed straight for Hawaii and marriage where he still lives as one of the finest orchid geneticists in his field. Ali's fertiliser sniffing got a lot worse before he eventually checked himself into rehab in the late 90s, he now runs a small cottage garden nursery outside of Norwich. For Brian fishing was now his only passion, all his songwriting royalties were spent on the finest gear, rods and lures and he began travelling the globe looking to catch as many species of gamefish as he could. So did fishing destroy the dream lifestyle of rock and soil for Brian?  Gardening by day and music by night, I don't think so, he reached the peak of his profession the only way to go was down, but he went sideways into another profession to avoid ever being seen as a failure or sell out well played young man, and we still have his music forever even if his vegetables are long eaten.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Part 4 - The Fruits of Success

  The next four months was like a haze for the young men and not the good type of haze you get from burning off your rose prunings on a crisp Winter's afternoon. From Wetherby to Yeadon and Pudsey to Hebden Bridge in an old landscapers van rented to the band by their own manager and chaffeur. The boys played clubs, pubs, halls and garden centres to enthusiastic crowds and some of the smaller nurseries were even sold out! Under Captain Craw's watchful eye the boys honed their act and onstage banter which mainly consisted of fruit and veg themed jokes mainly written by Pots to while away the time in the tour van. Brian didn't really know what was happening except that when the boys featured in the entertainment column for 'Gardener's World UK' he felt they were about to break into the big time. Still it wasn't all plain sailing with the lads cooped up in the van for long hours and not much time off tempers sometimes frayed, ''Imperial Green Longpod is the most superior broad bean variety Ali and you know it!'' Pots screamed into Ali face during the drive to Thrum Hall for one of the largest church fetes in the area, ''I'm a Witkiem Manita man when it comes to broad beans, sorry Pots my good man, Ali often teased the other members of the group by insisting on going into bat for inferior bean varieties and Pots took the bait almost every time, ''Say Imperial Green Longpod is the best or I'll belt you'' Pots stood up in the van ready to pounce on a giggling Ali, ''Hey, quiet you morons!'' the two boys were startled to hear the voice was coming from their leader brian who almost never raised his voice even when white butterfly grubs took out his entire cabbage crop last year, ''I've had it with you two, either shape up or ship out'' Brian yelled, Ali and Pots were totally stunned, Brain was the main songwriter and they knew he was their only ticket to stardom, so they all went back to their seats and spent the rest of the trip in silence.  

  Captain Craw knew this was the turning point he'd been waiting for and as he pulled up to the church gates he stopped the engine and said ''Boys, you've all been working very hard and I think you've earned a rest…'' he said quietly, ''Rest? What are you mad? Everything's just starting to go our way, is this what you call management?'' Brian said to the captain incredulously but the captain continued '…look I've booked you three a months holiday in a tulip farm in Holland, you'll get away from the grind learn more about bulb propagation and recharge your batteries…'' Pots andy Ali smiled widely as this was like a dream come true for them, 30 days of nothing but tulip sorting and genetic plant study, ''I won't go! I'll play without you, I'm going to be a star and none is going to stop me!'' Brian huffed at none in particular ''Oh I forgot the other reason for going over there they also have a state of the art recording studio, how would you like to record your first hit album boys?'' Brian hopped out of the van and started doing an improvised jig around the van as Ali, Craw and Pots looked on laughing, ''I think that's a yes'' the Captain confirmed.    

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Part 3 - Gettin' Some Green

  Everybody sniggered as the three young men in bib and brace overalls sheepishly made their way through the 100 or so people gathered in the ballroom of the 'Chlorophyll Club' to the stage where 'Three Peas in a Pod', the name the lads had decided upon the night before were about to make their very first performance. Gerry Garson from the top local Goth/gardening band 'The Bean-Stalkers' that had just finished playing whispered quite loudly ''Who ordered the load of chicken manure'' as Brain, Pots and Ali got settled onstage, '' Stop the turnip truck, it's three short!'' was another snide comment made by Billy, lead singer for post punk outfit 'Poison Ivory'. Brian pressed 'start' on the drum machine and history was born as the band launched into 'You can prune me back' followed by 'Make like a tree'  and finishing the set with ' Shirt potatoes baby!' in fact the band played most of their first hit album in that set with a crashing silence between each song as none of the young gardeners in the radiance could believe what they were witnessing, the birth of a legend.

  When Brian announced ''We are 'Three Peas in a Pod' and thanks for listening'' a large roar went up from the crowd, they and nobody could deny that was a breakout performance and their first! As the boys were busy chatting away with admirers and even accepting a few gifts of sun dried organic fruits a face loomed over the top of the crowd and bellowed ''So you want to make it in showbiz hey?''  all three boys looked up at the 6'9'' strangely attired man staring motionless at them, ''Sure, I guess'' said Ali, ''Who are you?'' Brian half whispered incredulously ''Me? Why I'm only your new manager and the man that's going to make you richer than you've ever imagined'' the giant figure slowly replied looking into each one of the boys eyes intently as he spoke, ''Yeah, but WHO are you?'' said Pots now tired of this weird display ''The name's Captain Craw, the best human scarecrow and talent manager in East London, how does 5000 pounds as a signing fee make you feel?'' the Captain took a cheque book from his inside coat pocket and waved in the guys faces, ''Jeepers'' said Brian.

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Part 2 - From Little Things Big Things Grow

  For the next six months Brian, Ali and Pots ate, slept and breathed gardening and music, the boys missed so many meeting of their regular various gardening club meeting that they were eventually stricken from the roll and were considered outcasts even by usually welcoming cactus fanciers. Garden by day, rehearse by night the guys were becoming like a small cult or commando unit, finally totally frustrated by their sons antisocial behaviour their respective parents urged the band to move down to London and ''Get this crazy music idea out of their systems before Spring vegetable harvest began''  Ali's Father found them a squalid one bedroom basement flat in London'd East end with just enough space for their music and potting equipment but it had a rundown glasshouse that they could work on as a project outside of songwriting.

  The lads now began putting the final touches to the first ten songs that would form their first performance and debut album 'Enough Parsnips for the Whole Class?' released in February 1985. Tensions in the flat would often reach boiling point when Brian, a perfectionist with his music would make the band run over the same few bars dozens of times but Pots would also drive the crew crazy with his insistence on correct spacing of tomato seedlings in the greenhouse,and one evening the mood got ugly. ''God Brian! We've been over this song fourteen times today, are we ever going to book gig?'' screamed Ali ''These things take time you can't rush great music, it's like a ripening melon…..''  Brian said calmly ''Yes Brian but we need more space like the space between a tender young tomato plant…'' interrupted Pots '' Time! Space?…I'll give you a ripened melon in your face!'' Ali grabbed a small watermelon Ali's Mother had posted down as a housewarming present from the kitchen counter and hurled right at Brian's head, he just managed to duck in time and all the boys helplessly watched their desert go sailing through the front window and landing in the gnome band that the boys had set up the day before, shattered gnome, watermelon and tiny garden tools flew in all directions.    

  As the boys silently looked at each then the broken window then at each other again Brian proudly piped up with ''Well, I think finally, we are ready'', ''About time!'' Ali exasperatingly quipped ''You don't get much more ready to rock than smashing a gnome village'' Pots said laughing then added ''But what's for desert now?''   

Friday, 10 February 2012

Part 1 - The Sprouting of a Legend

  The year is 1984 and awesome synth pop bands like Spandau Ballet, Duran Duran and Barbra Streisand rule the airwaves but in Bingley a Northern suburb Bradford England a 19 year old Brian Beaverbrook is ready to make his own assault on the hit parade, with gardening as his muse.

  For several years a young Brian had been writing songs in the backyard greenhouse secretly, where not even his parents or his chums from the 'Bingley Boy's Gardeners Squad'  had any idea of his musical talent. Then quite suddenly and spurred on by the prize of a new wheelbarrow, Brian entered Bradford's  'Annual Asparagus Parade & Talent Quest' and swept the judges off their feet with three of his original songs most notably the tune that was set to be his first hit 'You Can Prune Me Back (But I'll just keep loving you)'. Brian not only won the wheelbarrow but won over the hearts of the crowd but watching at the rear of the hall enviously was pumpkin growing enthusiast and bassist Phil (Pots) Hodges and guitarist come landscaper Ali Akkbar, they had been playing music for a short while on their own but realised they needed a strong lead singer to complete the band as well as someone who shared their ideals of fresh home grown produce.

  The two 20 year olds decided to approach Brian and see if he had the right stuff to be of of their gang, band and seed swapping group. ''Hope you're better with a pitchfork than you are with that keyboard!'' Phil said tauntingly as the boys approached Brian after the show, Brian shot the boys a look that meant business and replied '' The amount of fertiliser your face spurts it's no surprise your pumpkins are some of the best in the county'' as he squared up for what he thought was going to be a fist fight, ''What do you mean SOME of?'' Ali said slowly and getting right in Brian's face, after a pause Brian half whispered ''Well, they ain't as good as Mister Webster's on Dobson Street is they?'', brian was now chest to chest with Ali, ''Back off Ali'' said Phil ''This guy really knows his local produce'', Phil and Ali stepped back and started to smile as Brian relaxed a little, ''Look, we saw your act and like your style, want to join a band?''    

Friday, 3 February 2012

Neil's Diamond Years.

  I've just popped in for a quick chat about Neil Diamond. I've been an admirer of some of this songs for a long time but lately a few events in my life have brought him back into my thoughts. Firstly, I've never seen a more effortless performer, that's not to say he isn't putting in effort but the effort applied is totally hidden from the audience. For thirty years it seems neil has paced back and forth, front of stage warbling out his top 20 enormous hits as though it could go on forever. Maybe that's his m.o? Pace yourself is his motto, and could Mr Diamond be the first rock star to have his 100th birthday onstage? I might be hard to find to find the right spot for him to sing happy birthday to himself but he could slip it in between 'September Morn' and 'I Am, I Said' and lose none of the atmosphere he's well known for.

 I think with Neil's longevity and easy lifestyle he does run the risk of outliving his entire audience/band/management/children unless he releases tracks with Kanye West  or the Scissor Sisters really soon which will give birth to a new wave of Neil freak out types and extending his career until his retirement in 2050. I often wonder if Neil strained and struggled angsting over every word and note when writing his songs? Therefore when performing them felt he was very much ''off the hook'' with regards to performance, I hope so. 

  Anyway, it was nice to see him hang up his Elvis impersonator outfits a few years ago, he was starting to get a lot of overflow from The King's fans at his concerts, especially in Las Vegas, which fills auditoriums but doesn't sell merch!         

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Think About, Pop Music.

For the majority of western culture, popular contemporary music, or pop music B.E. (Before Elvis) used to be something to politely dance too, enjoy a drive-in cheeseburger too or polish your Bakelite dishes too. After Elvis blew the scene open (Daddio!) with his gyrating toilet areas it became a movement of rebellion also, Bakelite and cheeseburgers were discarded for gaily coloured bobby socks and quarts of Brylcreem as most young men got themselves highly polished hotrods and much less polished New York accents plus whole fad of sex before marriage clubs sprung up based around rock 'n' roll malted milkshake bars and it seemed all the headway in morality that the Spanish Inquisition had achieved would be cast aside completely.

But big business countered quickly, adapt to survive was their motto! They saw the money that could be made using teenage rebellion as a theme for manufactured rockers like 'Presley Gutenberg -The Tweed Terror'. Gutenberg had a short string of hits in 1959 but his live act was his big draw, pogoing up and down on each leg alternately while playing the flute until collapse, he packed out show all across the East cost of America.  'Carol the Crab Pruden' was another great act introduced in 1958. She was the first rebel rocker to use the now old trick of combining a hit song with a dance, 'Do the Carol Crab' sold 2 million copies in 1959 and Carol was on every variety show on television that year performing the song and dance that involving scuttling across the stage sideways while singing and snapping her ''claws'' at her backing group, what fun!

These days we have Bieber and lots of lot less ''fringey'' manufactured pop stars to look up too I can't be bothered to mention, they only ever act badly for publicity which is really appropriate and generally prescribe safe fun for their fans. I think the message here is yes, do rebel a little, but do it in a way that the music business can profit from because if we don't support our music and media giants they may not reveal another Jonas Brothers too the world?  

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Emoting...not a con.

  How many times have a been mistakingly thought sarcastic or rude in an email or text? Like, heaps of times, and it's caused no end of hassle including having to explain myself again but in a longer form and sometimes via a telephone conversation, oh the horror! This is all because I've been coerced into thinking emoticons are stupid, where they  actually are an excellent substitution in text based communication for body language which is so important in making yourself  properly understood. An 'angry face' emoticon cannot be misinterpreted as  joking around, a 'smiley with tongue out' is a clear expression of cheekily joking around and a 'smiley' clears up a lot of grey areas, consider the sentence ''I got the job!'' , now is that good or bad it's a little unclear, here's the solution ''I got the job : )'' now we clearly know what the typer is trying to express. 

  So to avoid awkward actual face to face communication I say should we rethink our stance on using emoticons, it's an excellent timesaver.  While I'm on the subject of social interactions let's end shaking hands with ladies, ladies themselves quite often don't shake hands with each other on meeting and I don't see why men should have to either it's very awkward and everybody knows it! Shaking hands with men can be hard enough so I propose we all greet no matter of race, culture, age or sex with a high five, they are always fun right?

  One more thing, if you know me even a little bit you don't have to start an email with 'Hi, how are you?''  you can just assume that I'm acceptably ok otherwise you would have seen a post from me whining about it on Facebook or Twitter, just tell me your information but make it clear and use emoticons, don't hide your text based feelings from me, it's eating into my day clarifying stuff.