Monday 17th July

| BY Natalie Dembinska

From The Issue: All I Did Was Type “Corpse Artist” Into Google by Natalie Dembinska

TM45_Read_Natalie Dembinska

I was sitting with a friend the other day, having a drink, when two or three double-vodka tonics into the conversation, the discussion turned to funerals. Not funerals per se, but the prettifying of the recently deceased for their turn in the coffin.

Obviously, with a funeral being a sort of last hurrah for the person whose funeral it is, you want them to look their best. I am presuming that, despite them no longer being with us, they’d want to look their best, too. But how does one go about finding a “corpse artist”? Is there a listing in the Yellow Pages? Are they ranked by ability? How alive can they make a corpse appear? How do you book one? Are there waiting lists? How long are they? And what if you miss your slot by living too long? Or, God forbid, die too early and they can’t fit you in because they’ve got someone else pencilled in?

Unless you have a slot booked at Dignitas, these things are kind of difficult to plan in advance. Needless to say, a quick Google revealed that, while the idea of corpse artistry is a concept obviously ahead of its time, there is something called “necromorphus embalming”. Therefore, even if in life you shunned any facial- enhancement treatments, you can be sure that in death you will appear plumper than a ripe peach freshly plucked from a tree. Even the deceased have the right to be the best version of their deceased selves.

Which brings me to my point: in times of procrastination and general life avoidance, your mind, with the help of Google, can take you to some weird fucking places. Well, mine does anyway. Which is the reason for Googling “corpse artist”. And this list of other things found in my internet search history.


Anyone who saw the trailer for Mariah Carey’s new E! show, Mariah’s World, will know that at one point she was filmed on the phone to a wedding planner, demanding kittens for what was going to be her big day. And an albino elephant. Well, have you ever heard of anyone walking down the aisle not trailed by an albino elephant? Yes. But that’s beside the point.

Carey may have been joking but, still, albino elephants obviously exist, and so, should you want one, how hard could it be to hire one? Very, actually. When it comes to albino ones anyway. For some reason, any elephant-for-hire website you come across doesn’t seem to give you the option. However, purchasing one is slightly easier. There were two for sale in Kuwait, though that listing was from a few years ago. I would have emailed to ask if they had any more in stock, but sadly the contact details seem to have mysteriously disappeared. Which maybe isn’t such a bad thing. Imagine the shipping costs.


“Hiya! Yesterday I came across an article about having sex with dolphins. Did you know that there is a whole website that is basically a guide to how to have sexual intercourse with a dolphin? Me neither, but yeah, that’s definitely very confusing and shocking and they taught me on every business course that all job applications must have a strong opening. So here I am. I would love to be your new intern.”

The CV that was attached to this was framed by a beautiful collage of meat- based products. More importantly, it introduced me to the world of mammal intercourse. Are humans and dolphins not unified by their mammalian status? Are we really ready to discriminate based on fin? Some of you may think it wiser to consider a person’s suitability based on their “abilities”, and it’s true, the attention to detail in this instance could have been better – where was the link to the guide? Anyway, allow me to pass on the three most important lessons gleaned from said guide. 1. Aquariums and zoos are out of the question – too many witnesses. 2. If a dolphin wants to mate with you, accept – if possible! And last but not least, 3. Whether you masturbate or mate with a male or female, always spend time with them afterwards. Cuddle them, rub them, talk to them and, most importantly, show them you love them. This is essential, as it helps to strengthen the bond between you.


Before Christmas I was searching for an ass midget. For those of you who don’t know, an ass midget is a gnome-shaped butt plug that measures 30cm in length. And comes only in black silicone. What I wanted were miniature versions, in fluorescent pink or maybe orange, so that I could give them out as Christmas presents. Is there anything more festive than a miniature gnome? I think not, but anyway.

Had I not Googled “ass midget”, I would not have discovered the surprising gap in the anal-trainer market for a more cheerful product, nor would I have learnt of the many inventive ways that you, too, can make one for yourself at home. When it comes to sex toys, wipe-clean silicone is key. No one likes a sticky toy. But making your own silicone mould is time-consuming and obvious. Why go to the effort when there is a host of options at your fingertips? Russian nesting dolls, for example, are said to work very well, because you can start at a very small size and work your way up to larger ones. Carrots come highly recommended, too. As does ginger, which will result in a burning sensation with a little bit of a calming effect. Wood is best avoided unless carefully sanded, as it could result in splinters, as are screwdriver heads – it seems they are prone to getting lost. Or you could, should you happen to have some tennis balls, a PVC pipe and strong glue, make a dumbbell-type creation. Hits the spot every time, apparently.


During the summer of 2016, scientists made a life-changing breakthrough akin to that of Alexander Fleming discovering penicillin. What was it? Cockroach milk – the superfood of the future and the key to feeding the world’s growing population, what with it being four times more nutritious than cow’s milk. Obviously, this has raised many questions, the most important being how does one milk a cockroach? And what drugs were the scientists on that the idea of milking a cockroach even crossed their minds? And then they tried to do it and succeeded? Do cockroaches even have nipples? I’m assuming you can’t use your hands to milk them as they’d be too big, so you’d probably need tiny tweezers. And if a cockroach does have nipples surely they’d be under their shell, so wouldn’t you have to remove it to pull the teat? But wouldn’t that kill the cockroach? And if so, how many have been sacrificed in the name of ’roach milk?


Since we’re already on the subject of nipples, why not move on to breasts? It’s a natural transition. Remember Daria? More specifically, remember Sick, Sad World, the greatest TV show that never was? Where each episode began and ended with an all-important question, such as: “Are bats sneaking into your neighbourhood disguised as cute flying squirrels?”, “Can renegade surgeons transplant your brain while you sleep?”, “Can monkeys surf the net… and corrupt our kids?” and “Breast implants for chickens?”

Google most of those and you get nothing. Google “breast implants for chickens”, however, and you’ll be met with an alarming amount of guides on how to turn a chicken breast into one of those bra-insert things that make your breasts appear larger. The key is to wrap them in clingfilm and not wear them for too long, as they start to smell when your body heat warms them up. Weirdly, though, there is a lack of articles on the phenomenon of chickens being given breast implants in the name of enhancing their natural assets, unless you count pumping them full of water on a battery farm. Dig a little deeper, though, and silicone implants in chickens have been found. Discovered via the medium of chicken nugget. Apparently, if you feed a chicken silicone, it can also experience the joy of a foreign body in its body. It just doesn’t know about it until after it has ended up in a fast-food carton.


Are you in the market for a flat, or maybe – should you have recently won the EuroMillions – a house? Do you subscribe to Rightmove and Zoopla alerts? Do you find yourself gazumped at every turn? Outbid by someone richer and even more desperate than you? So close to the prize that you could finger it, only to have it snatched away at the eleventh hour? Well, it’s your own fault. You’re approaching the whole property-buying thing from completely the wrong angle. Rightmove and Zoopla are not your friends.

If you want any chance of owning a home in London before the age of 84, there is only one thing to do: read the death notices. You know, that column in your local newspaper listing the recently deceased in your area. Scan it. You’re looking for someone old with few surviving family members. Family members are greedy, they can drive up the price if there are too many of them. Google the deceased, find out their address. Street View it. If it’s to your liking, contact the family. Offer your condolences. Offer to help them with the unloading of inherited property by suggesting you buy it from them. They already have so much to deal with, it’s the least you can do. Offer a fair price – they’re grieving, not stupid – and before you know it, you, too, will get to experience the unique joy of signing your life away to your chosen bank in exchange for a pile of well-aged bricks. 

Text Max Blagg
Illustration Charles Jeffrey

Taken from Issue 45 of 10 Men, on newsstands now…