Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Top 10 reasons why I should be the sixth member of One Direction

Okay, it's that time of year when we start making some resolutions and today I am throwing my one into the hat. In 2014, my New Year's resolution is to join Harry, Liam, Niall, Zayn and Louis as their sixth member. Here is my top 10 reasons why this should happen:

10. Six of us would be able to beat the shit out of the five in The Wanted
I have been keeping a careful eye on the trash talking that has been coming from those chumps in The Wanted and I don't like it one bit (although it is a bit like watching a re-run of the Take That and East 17 feud which is pretty cool). The problem 1D have here is that those boys in The Wanted look a bit harder, and they have that Tom Parker dude who looks like he could have just stepped off the Aylesbury Estate on the Old Kent Road. But with me in the band we have the numerical advantage plus I have taken one Thai Kick Boxing class, so I'm ready to kick some butt. I also know how to use Twitter.

One Direction, The Wanted, feud, One Direction The Wanted feud, One Direction 6th member, One Direction sixth member,

9. I have already perfected the air-grab technique
If there is one must-have thing that all boy-banders should have in their arsenal, it has to be the air-grab technique and clearly as this picture demonstrates - I have it down to a T! If you look carefully, my hand is perfectly poised to clench at precisely the right moment and the emotion etched in my face tells you I mean every single word of the song I'm singing; which just happens to be boy band classic MMMBop by Hanson.

air grab, boy bands, One Direction,

8. Zayn needs a best man for his upcoming wedding with Perrie from Little Mix
I have no idea when this wedding is taking place, but if I am to perform best man duties to the best of my abilities, it's important that I join the band sooner rather than later so me and Zayn can bond like brothers. We all know how important the best man duties are - they include:
  • Arranging the stag-do (Center Parcs here we come! Harry will love it - there are some right old tarts there)
  • Getting Zayn to the church on time (no expense spared mate, Addison Lee all the way) 
  • Singing Margate by Chas & Dave as Perrie walks down the aisle (honestly mate, it's what she would have wanted)
  • Writing an awesome speech where I regale tales of our childhood (you're from Mitcham like me right?)
  • And the most important best-man task of them all - sleeping with the bridesmaids (Zayn, which one is Perrie? I promise I won't touch her...)
One Direction, Little Mix, Perrie Edwards, bridesmaids, wedding, Zayn Malik,

7. My autobiography is already out
No self-respecting pop star can be expected to be taken seriously without having their own autobiography out within five minutes, and luckily I am way ahead of you - my autobiography is already out! Granted, some of the names and places have been changed but these were just down to legal reasons. In typical celebrity autobiographical fashion, at the heart of my self-penned book The Drought is a story of struggle and  adversity which I had to overcome. That's right, it's a story about how I suffered a sexual drought and couldn't get my leg over for eight months. Just thinking about it brings a tear to my eye. Maybe we should move on...
 The Drought, Steven Scaffardi, pop star autobiography, One Direction,
6. I can cut some serious shapes on the dance floor!
Those 1D boys looked like they had a blast making that Best Song Ever video but a sixth member would have really completed the circle. Someone once commented on my dancing: "You look like Frankenstein on acid" which was nice. So I reckon I'd fit straight in. I wouldn't need any training, I'd just rock up and let it all go. The only thing I ask is that you give me a bit of time to get up to speed. As the picture suggests my timing is a little out at the moment...

One Direction, dancing, dancing badly, One Direction dancing, One Direction dancing badly, Best Song Ever

5. I am already used to performing in front of big(ish) crowds
I am well aware that One Direction have the odd fan or two and spend a lot of time in front of big crowds at their sell-out concerts, but I do not find this daunting; not in the slightest! You see, I am already comfortable performing in front of crowds. Back in 2011 during my my stand-up comedy days I spent 12-months going up and down London, sometimes performing whole five-minute comedy routines in front of audiences as big as 13 or 14 people. I'm ready for the crowds 1D have in store for me - no problem!

Steven Scaffardi, stand-up comedy, One Direction, concert, sell-out, crowds,

4. I know how to treat the ladies
Being in One Direction brings a certain amount of responsibility, especially when it comes to the ladies. Whether it's thousands of adoring screaming female fans or celebrity girlfriends, you can't be in 1D without having a certain flair with the opposite sex and I have that in abundance. So bascially lads, what I'm saying is that I'm ready to do my duty as a good One Direction band member and tackle the likes of Rihanna, Kelly Brook, and Susan Boyle. And if you don't believe me, then just check out my video on how to become a player...

3. Harry Styles needs a proper wingman
It's been a tough year for poor old Harry. The guy just can't seem to catch a break when it comes to the ladies, but as I have clearly demonstrated above, I know exactly what to do when it comes to finding the perfect woman and winning her heart. I think Harry's main problem is that he has been making poor choices when it comes to his wingman selection policy. Rumour has it that Harry jetted off to Las Vegas with Justin Beiber at the start of the year to help them get over their break-ups with Taylor Swift and Selena Gomez respectively. That's your problem right there sunshine - what does Beiber know about getting girls? And as for your choice of location, you have a lot to learn. If you really want to meet the right woman, you can't go wrong with the Wetherspoons in Mitcham. Full of birds, and all around the age group you like as well...

Harry Styles, girlfriends, Harry Styles girlfriends, One Direction, ladies man, Wetherspoons, Mitcham, older woman, cougar, Harry Styles wingman, Harry Styles Las Vegas, Justin Beiber,

2. I have been in a boy band before
That's right, I have walked the walk and talked the talk. I don't step up to the plate without being to back it up. I have already tasted the highs and lows of being in a boy band; mostly lows if we're being honest. The only real high was when we were in Amsterdam but that was more of a herbal high than a successful high, but I digress. Please allow me to present my boy band CV:

Old Spice, boy bands, Brit awards, Brit Awards 2002
Old Spice: 2002
This is me and the boys at the Brit awards in 2002. We weren't actually nominated for any awards, or even invited for that matter. In fact we had to all chip in and pay for a table which was the beginning of the end for the group as we blew our entire album budget on that table. From right to left to right we have Ginger Spice, Bald Spice, Champagne Spice, Ethnic Spice and at the front is Paul O'Grady Spice.

United Nations, boy band, urban music,
United Nations: 2006
This was back in the days when I was throwing down some urban beats, so I put together a group to fill the gap left by bands such as Damage and S Club Seven. The boys laid down the vocals and combined with my expert rapping skills, we could have been huge but we got embroiled in a bitter legal battle over our name as some organisation reckoned they had it first. Whatevs.

No Direction, Boy band, pop music
No Direction: 2011
I went on that reality TV show God Loves a Trier hosted by John McCririck where they were putting a boy band together. Only four auditioned so we roped one of the cleaners in to join. Problem is, McCririck was also our manager and he bet most of our record deal on the horses, which only left us with enough cash to make one of us look like a real boy band member. That created friction and the band split.

1. I know how to reinvent myself
If you want longevity in this crazy pop star world, then you must be able to reinvent yourself. All the greats know how to do exactly just that to preserve their careers. Just look at the likes of Madonna, Robbie Williams, and Gareth Gates. They all have that magic formula to keep things interesting and make sure the fans don't get bored. I am a master of the reinvention; and I have been known in some circles as The Chameleon such is the way I am able to alter my look; whether it is my dress-sense or my haircut. And if you don't believe then just check out this bad boy...

Pop star, pop star reinventing themselves,
So there you have it 1D. I have made my pitch and I will now patiently, yet confidently, wait by the phone for Harry, Liam, Niall, Zayn or Louis to give me a call. If you all look into your hearts, you know deep down that 2014 won't be the same without Champagne Steve in your ranks. Come on!

Monday, 30 December 2013

The Top 10 things you never knew about the Karate Kid!

So I'm sitting there the other night having one last quick flick through the channels before hitting the sack when ITV2 selfishly force me to stay up until the early hours because they choose that precise moment to show the Karate Kid! It doesn't matter that I have seen the film 897 times - when Daniel LaRusso and Mr Miyagi appear on my TV screen it is like a drug I simply can't say no to and it's time for one last fix (I promise!).

It is hard to believe that next year the film will be 30 years old. People say that nostalgia is a wonderful thing, but screw that - it just makes me feel old! In fact, the only other thing that makes me feel older is when I meet someone who was born in the 1990s.

But I'm prepared to give nostalgia a go and that's why I put together this Top 10 list of things you never knew about the Karate Kid!

10. "Sweep The Leg" is a song!
No More Kings used the famous line in their 2007 song 'Sweep The Leg'. Any self-respecting Karate Kid fan remembers the shock on Johnny's face when John Kreese tells him to go after Daniel's injured knee to win the All Valley Karate Championship, and follows up by asking "Do you have a problem with that?" Here, play the song as you read the rest of the list as it acts as a nice soundtrack...

9. Mr Miyagi didn't even bloody know karate!
I feel a little bit cheated here. All those years of practicing wax on, wax off and the man didn't even know a single move! Apart from some basic training on the film, actor Noriyuki "Pat" Morita openly admitted he had never formally trained in any martial arts. I suppose that goes a long way to explaining why he got nominated for a Best Supporting Actor role at the 1984 Oscars (yes, that's right Mr Miyagi got nominated for an Oscar!).

karate kid, wax on wax off, Mr Miyagi

8. In fact there were only two real black belts in the entire film!
Ron Thomas (who played Bobby - the guys who breaks Daniel's leg) and Darryl Vidal (who Johnny beats in the semi-final) were the only two real black belts in the movie. Of course, anyone who remembers the montage during the All Valley Karate Championship will clearly remember that Vidal (who was a 1st degree black belt during the film) sticks out like a sore thumb with his skills and easily would have kicked everyone's ass in that tournament. He was so bloody good that he even uses his own name in the film. In turns out that Vidal is actually the secret star of the film as it is him dressed in a body suit and a bald-head wig when we see Mr Miyagi doing the crane kick on the post at the beach. Cheated, again!

Mr Miyagi, Karate Kid, beach scene, crane technique

7. Webber-san?
Daniel's original last name in the script was "Webber" according to the DVD commentary. It just doesn't quite have the same ring to it now does it, although it's fair to say that former Manchester United striker Danny Webber would have some great football somgs from the terraces if the name had stuck.

Karate Kid, Mike Barnes, Daniel LaRusso, footballer Danny Webber, Danny Webber, Karate Kid III, Karate Kid 3,

6. Dutch is Steve McQueen's son
Dutch, who for me was always the baddest bad-ass in the Cobra Kai's, is in fact the son of acting legend and the king of cool Steve McQueen! He went on to appear in several films throughout the 80s and 90s but his real passion was always race car driving, and over the last decade he has enjoyed a good racing career competing in several types of racing from Motocross to the Baja 1000. A serious injury in the Daytona International Speedway in 2006 caused him to call time on his racing career and he now owns a custom motorcycle and race car company.

Steve McQueen, Chad McQueen, Dutch, Karate Kid

5. The fight scenes were real!
Well, sort of! During the scene where Daniel gets his ass kicked after the Halloween dance, William Zabka (who plays Johnny) is seen to throw a front kick at Daniel. The kick actually caught Ralph Macchio on the face and injured him. John Kreese would have been proud of that one. No mercy.

Karate Kid, Johnny, Halloween, Halloween dance scene, No Mercy, Daniel LaRusso, Cobra Kai, Skeleton costumes,

4. The Karate Kid was a comic character first
Long before Daniel LaRusso came along and made the name famous worldwide, a kid by the name of Val Armorr was already doing the name of The Karate Kid proud by taking on opponents like Batman no less! In fact, the movie makers had to get special permission from DC Comics who owned the rights to the name as The Karate Kid was already a character in their Legion of Superheroes series. There is a credit at the end of the film to DC Comics.
Karate Kid, Legion of Superheroes,

3. What if Rocky was the Best Around and Daniel-san had the Eye of the Tiger?
According to Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Joe Esposito, the song "You're The Best" which appears in the All Valley Karate Championship montage was originally written for Rocky III (which explains the lyric "History repeats itself"). The song had been rejected in favour of "Eye of the Tiger".

You're the best around, eye of the tiger, Karate Kid

2. Charlie Sheen was originally cast to play Daniel LaRusso
Imagine if Tiger Blood was the winning formula rather than the Crane technique. That's what would have happened if Charlie Sheen had not turned down the role of Daniel LaRusso. Sheen claims his dad advised him against the role and told him to do a lesser film instead. To be fair, could you really imagine Sheen putting up with having to paint the fence? In the end a 22-year-old Ralph Macchio got the job and spent the entire making of the film trying to convince the cast and crew members that he wasn't lying about his age!

Karate Kid, Charlie Sheen, Daniel LaRusso,
1. The Crane Kick is not a real martial arts technique
That man Darryl Vidal steals the show again as he explains he came up with the idea for Daniel's memorable finishing move, and what's more - it's not even a proper martial arts move! Vidal said: "...the crane technique, as depicted in the movie, isn't a real move in any karate or kung-fu. Pat Johnson (the martial arts adviser on the film) told me what he wanted, and I basically said, "you mean something like this?" It is widely recognized, and I still hesistate when I tell my karate students that I made it up. But as you might have guessed, there is very little practical application to the technique." Bollocks, all those years of practicing the bloody thing and it doesn't even work!

Karate Kid, Crane, Crane Technique, Martial Arts, Steven Scaffardi, stand-up comedy,

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Jennifer Lopez turns up at the Catchphrase studio to tell Carol Vorderman she wants her ass back!

Rumour has it that Jennifer Lopez was in a foul mood this week after finding out that someone had stolen her backside and was flashing it around willy-nilly on ITV game show Catchphrase. J-Lo must have been seething when she spotted this picture of Carol Vorderman turning up at the studios...

Carol Vorderman, Cathphrase, hot, ass, Jennifer Lopez, sexy, Countdown, MILF,

I know she's in her 50s, and she's a maths geek, and she was pretty dowdy in those early Countdown years... But you would wouldn't you?

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

A Christmas gift for the festive season!

Steven Scaffardi with the legendary Ron Burgundy's autobiography!
Hi everyone, I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! As a special gift over the festive season I am running a free book promotion on Amazon where you will be able to download The Drought for free on Christmas Day and Boxing Day as I have signed up for the Amazon KDP Select programme.

In the next couple of weeks I'll be writing a blog about my experience using KDP select so stay tuned if you are thinking about using it yourself!

But for now, please go away and stuff your faces with Turkey and I hope Santa has brought you everything you wanted this year! As you can see from my picture, I have some very heavy reading to do over the holidays!

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Rob Ford... I salute you, we ALL salute you!

The legend that is Mr Rob Ford was first brought to my attention about six months ago by a Canadian work colleague of mine who just so happens to come from the wonderful city of Toronto where Mr Ford has resided over as mayor since 2010. At the time my colleague would entertain me with tales about the unconventional politician; such as the time he ordered that a packed bus fall of rush-hour commuters to be thrown off so that the high school football team he coaches could be picked up instead.

But nothing that had gone before could prepare the world for the truly amazing set of events that would unfold in 2013! Just in case you have been living in a bubble over the last few months, here is a quick timeline of events that this truly awesome man has bestowed upon us this year:

Rob Ford, Crack video, Toronto Star, scabdal,
May 16: A report is made by The Toronto Star that they have seen a video of their mayor smoking crack and throwing out the odd racist and homophobic slur whilst allegedly chilling with a bunch of local drug dealers.

May 17: Ford comes out fighting and slams the accusations as "ridiculous" and vows to clear his good name. This is followed up by his lawyer claiming you can't even tell who it is in the video; a line taken straight from the schoolboy's foolproof book of excuses.

May 24: But a week later Ford makes another statement, this time taking the Bill Clinton stance of I did not have sexual relations with that woman when he declares "I do not use crack cocaine, nor am I an addict of crack cocaine."

Rob Ford, Crack, scandal, Toronto, mayor
June 15: Toronto police locate the alleged video after raids on several homes and a photograph starts to circulate of Ford with two suspects who were arrested in the raids. But Ford is no fool - he has a simple explanation in that he poses in photo's with "everybody". Personally I don't think the man put enough effort into his excuse. If it was me, I would have said that I thought I was posing with Method Man and ODB from the Wu-Tang Clan as people might have found that more believable, but it doesn't matter. After all, he didn't smoke crack right?

August 18: Poor old Rob is forced to defend himself again as the media allege that two of his associates tried to obtain the video after the allegations first surfaced. Jeez, give the guy a break will ya! He's already told you he doesn't smoke crack!

October 1: This time good old Robbie is forced to leap to the defence of Alexander Lisi, after his friend and driver is charged with trafficking marijuana. We all make mistakes, and Ford calls Lisi a "good guy."

October 31: After five months of protesting his innocence, the Toronto police announce they have recovered a copy of the crack video that depicts images of Ford "consistent with those previously reported in the press." Ah, this is now a little bit awkward.

Rob Ford, Toronto, Mayor, crack scandal, reporters
November 3: To make matters worse, a new video appears of the Toronto mayor looking slightly worse for wear (or "hammered" as Ford delicately put it). A couple of days later and Ford finally admits he did indeed smoke crack about a year ago. But...! It's okay because it happened during a "drunken stupor". Oh come on, we've all been there - one too many beers down the local and before you know it you're in the local crack den. Besides, it wasn't Rob's fault and he never lied to anyone. The press are the ones to blame really because reporters "didn't ask the correct questions" so he wasn't lying at all. Stupid reporters, tut.

November 7: Rob Ford is now single-handedly keeping YouTube in business as another video is posted online by the Toronto Star and Toronto Sun that shows Ford having what you might call a bit of a rant as he threatens to "kill" and "murder" certain individuals. It is Rob Ford's Crocodile Dundee knife equivalent of saying to Gordon Brown of his "bigoted woman" line that's not a video clip, this is a video clip! Ford explains that he was "extremely" drunk and is "extremely" embarrassed, so lets not be too hard on him. Who hasn't had a skinful and threatened to maim someone eh?!

November 13: Okay Rob, you are now starting to make it a wee bit difficult to defend you as former staff members claim Ford was intoxicated at work, drank while driving and associated with suspected prostitutes. Ford then throws his two pennies in by admitting his bought illegal drugs whilst in office.

November 14: This has to be my favourite all-time Rob Ford-ism. It's bad enough that he flat refuses to resign as mayor, but just to up the ante, good old Rob Ford uses the old tactic of 'getting in their first to defuse a situation' when he shocks reporters by stating on live TV that the upcoming allegations of him telling a female aide that he was going to "eat her pussy" were completely false! And you know why they were false? Because Rob has enough damn pussy at home to keep his appetite satisfied. I'm not too sure what is better on this video clip; Ford's amazing admission or the complete and utter shock of the reporters who quite simply thought that they simply could not be stunned by this man anymore. Boy they were wrong!

 November 18: Seeing as Bobby boy is determined to not go down without kicking and screaming, his colleagues at City council vote to strip the mayor of all of his duties. Ford calls it a "coup d'etat" and says he is ready for war in the October 2014 municipal election. Say what you want about British politicians, but the fact that this man still has a chance to be re-elected next year pretty much says it all! What a guy.

December 9: So you's think after nearly a year of scandals including drugs, drinking, ranting, whoring, racism and homophobia, you'd think that good old Rob might want to go into Christmas with a low profile right? Of course he doesn't! This is Rob Ford of course - just when you think the man can't simply top his last efforts, he goes and throws a pedophile accusation in there! Yep, that's right - in a televised interview he claimed that Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale was in his backyard in 2012 "taking pictures of little kids." Ford went on to say: "I don't want to say that word but you start thinking what this guy is all about." Ford later retracted his comments and apologised when Dale served Ford with a libel notice.

If you have time then check out this very funny article on Buzzfeed called 26 Reasons To Be Thankful For Crack-Smoking Mayor Rob Ford This Holiday Season! You simply couldn't make this up and that is why I have one thing left to say...

Rob Ford... I salute you, we ALL salute you!