2013 in Review

Perking the Pansies recovered from a difficult birth at the murderous hands of the Turkish censors, thrived through the terrible twos and survived the transitional threes, ending the year with 60,000 hits for the last twelve months. Thank you to everyone and anyone who’s passed by and glanced at my random witterings. Most blogs burn out after two years so I must be living on borrowed time.

As the sun sets on 2013, in the best Hogmanay tradition, I give you the year’s top ten – a pick ‘n’mix treat of bum cleavage, Turks at the barricades, a shot in the arm, a tender coming out story, a sexy rugger bugger, a book to send you to sleep, an old-time boozer, an olive tree planted in a foreign field and a scratched itch.

Plumber’s Bum

It was the picture wot won it.

Turkey Troubles

A revolution in the making?

Tom Daley: Something I Want to Say

Saying it before someone said it for him.

Gareth Thomas, Dancing on Ice Drama

Who said ice-prancing rugger buggers can’t read?

Life in the Old Blog Yet

With thanks to the nice people at WordPress who featured me on one of their big hitting sites.

Turkey, Surviving the Expats – Out Now!

Keeping me out the workhouse.

God Save the Queen’s Head

A Chelsea classic and old watering hole of mine.

From Little Acorns...

A small corner of Turkey that is forever John.

Seven Year Itch

A soppy tale from Liam.

Turkey, Who Will Blink First?

And we all know who did in the end, don’t we?

For some inexplicable reason, this was the most popular image of 2013, featured in Let’s Hear it for the Brides.

Nine Elms
The Thames at Nine Elms

And I shouldn’t forget the perennial favourites from previous years that keep coming back again and again like a bad case of thrush.

Gran Canaria Sex Emporium

Proving that ‘sex’ really is the most searched for word on Google.

Now That’s What I Call Old

A humble little post about a spectacular discovery in eastern Turkey that just keeps on giving while the archaeologists keep on digging  – 8,000 hits and climbing. Who would have thought?

Expat Glossary

Oft quoted and oft plagiarised (and not always with a credit, tut tut)

Goodbye to the Turkish Living Forum

The few spoiling it for the many. A real shame.

Turkey Street RecliningAnd what of 2014? All I know is that Turkey Street, Jack and Liam move to Bodrum will be out early in the year. Will it be as successful as the first one? Who knows? Not me. Whatever happens, come rain or shine, a happy and prosperous year to all my pansy fans. Thank you for staying the course and for your remarkable support. I’m touched but then, I have been for years.

Locked Up and Knocked Up

Are you an expat who started a company to do the business in Turkey? Do you have a website? If not, you’d better get one sharpish and register it with the authorities. If you don’t, you might find yourself dumped in the clink for 6 months. Even if you do have a website, you’d better make sure it’s stuffed to the brim with company information. Don’t forget to include the name of the office cat, your granny’s maiden name and the parlous state of your bank balance. If your site content isn’t up to scratch, expect to be banged up alongside a hairy daddy with a twinkle in his eye and a little lovin’ on his mind. Why is this? Well, the Turkish Government has just adopted a new Trade Law which is due to come into effect on the 1st July this year.

Sounds like some daft idea from a witless job’s-worth paid to dream up the unworkable. I expect it will go the way of the much heralded internet regulations introduced with a fanfare then unceremoniously dropped when it became blindingly obvious they were just a little bit crap.

Censorship Getting Madder

My ‘Welcome‘ page on the Facebook Perking the Pansies Book site is no longer available in Turkey. The page is supplied courtesy of a third party application called Pagemodo. Perhaps Pagemodo has just been added to the very, very long (and getting longer) list of sites blocked by lazy Turkish censors. First the lights went out on my blog, then my personal site, now a harmless promo page on Facebook. This is all getting a little tedious. How is an indecent boy meant to make a decent living round here?

Jail Bait

In December 2010, Perking the Pansies was blocked by the Turkish internet police. I threw a hissy fit at the prospect of a firm hand on my door knob, a frisk by a frisky conscript and instant deportation. It all turned out to be a storm in a çay cup. Tens of thousands of Google blogs were instantly blacked out because they all shared the same IP address with a couple of Turkish websites that were infringing copyright law (laughable when you think that Turkey is flooded with counterfeit goods). As a result, my inconsequential ramblings were simply caught up in lazy censorship – the scatter gun approach punished the innocent and the guilty alike. My blog became, as the Americans say, ‘collateral damage‘. I had to shut up shop at Google and move lock, stock and barrel to new premises at Word Press.

Well, bugger me. It’s happened again. This time, the idiotic censors have targeted my personal website, jackscott.info, which I use to promote my book. I’d like to make some PR capital out of this by claiming anti-gay discrimination but, alas, I can’t. The circumstances are exactly as before. This time, it seems porn and gambling sites were targeted. I found one site sharing my IP address called Jail Bait; sounds like a particularly nasty little corner of the web. Ban illegal sites by all means but it can’t be beyond the wit of these petty bureaucrats to deal with offenders individually, instead of pulling the plug on thousands of innocent sites just because it’s easier.

I’m pleased to write that the problem has now been resolved by changing my IP address with my domain registrar. What a palavar.

Sense and Censorship

The threat of compulsory Government prescribed filters to access the internet here in Turkey seems to have mercifully receded. According to an article in the Turkish Daily News, the use of filters is now voluntary. The article states that during the three month trial period, 22,000 Turkish internet users (out of a total of 11.5 million) signed up to the service. Not exactly a sell-out tour.

Meanwhile in Pakistan, according to the Think Progress website, the Telecommunications Authority has banned users from texting 16,000 words that are considered offensive or obscene. The list of prohibited words (a mixture of Urdu and English) include:

lesbian, virgin, homosexual, condom, intercourse, breast, athlete’s foot, deposit, flogging the dolphin (?), black out, drunk, flatulence, glazed donut, harem, hostage, murder, penthouse, Satan, and wait for it, Jesus Christ.

This has got to be a hoax.

You might also like:

Gaygle It

One Out, All Out