Tark And Mara Rail Against “Freshly Pressed” Injustice

Tark and Mara Rail at Freshly Pressed Injustice

See that tower? There on the left? Tark and Mara don’t live there. It’s full of socialists.

All was not well in Tark and Mara Towers. Mara’s shrieks could be heard on Dublin’s Northside, unbeknownst to Mara, who would never knowingly have sent herself to that part of the city on purpose. The irony was lost on both her and her husband, however. They were too incensed. They were madder than Jean Galliano and the UKIP party leadership on holidays in Calais during a mass European visa amnesty.

Mara folded her arms, ignoring the slight clank of diamond against bone. “What do you mean, she’s been ‘Freshly Pressed’?”

“It’s a sort of blogging showcase,” said Tark, his calm veneer betrayed by the flash of a black onyx signet ring as his hand scraped over the shiniest of bald pates. “One of that dreadful Sparkling woman’s posts has been selected by the Powers That Be over in WordPress HQ as an editor’s pick.”

“What is? What post?”

“Oh, I don’t know,” said Tark, six variegated Pantone blacks in his voice. “Something about people’s attention spans. I didn’t read it all.”

“That insufferable wench!” Mara pounded her fist on top of the baby grand pianoforte which faced the southern terrace of their twelfth-floor Dublin 2 penthouse. Somewhere in Dublin 3, a Jack Russell whined.  “She must’ve paid them off. She intimidated them! She threatened them with a virus!”

The inner corners of Tark’s demonic eyebrows made a valiant effort to meet the tip of his nose. “She is a virus.”

Tark and Mara Rail at Freshly Pressed Injustice

Hatchet job, anyone? (Well, chainsaw)

“This is abuse of the grossest kind,” said Mara. She walked to the mirror and reset her right eyebrow to a less outraged position, before retiring to the chaise longue to throw a skeletal arm over her rigid forehead. “It’s more unjust than that bloody stupid Cecil the Lion thing consuming the unwashed hippie underclasses last week as though there was a global lentil shortage. It’s not just WordPress that suffers. This makes a mockery of the entire blogosphere.”

Tark drummed his fingers on the polished marble of the Louis XIV console table. “I agree; it should have been me. Choosing that vile creature’s blog over mine is obviously an oversight. But the question now is, how do we reverse the damage? There are almost forty-two million posts published on WordPress every month. Only 0.002% of them get a Freshly Pressed badge. That’s, like, only one in every 500,000, or something.”

Mara removed her bony compress and narrowed her eyes at her husband. “Why don’t you ask her,” she sneered. “She’s the number bore. I just don’t see how we’ve been thinking about this for four minutes already, and you haven’t yet come up with a way to bring her down.  Are you losing your touch, husband?”

“Hardly, my splendiferous serpent.” Tark returned his wife’s withering glance with a look which could curdle vodka, before softening it with her favourite frown. “Don’t tell me you’re losing faith in me.” He opened his laptop and pressed one gold-embossed key. “In fact, I have already assembled the very weapon which will ensure my success in this matter, as in all others.”

Tark and Mara Rail at Freshly Pressed Injustice

Tark’s behind you

Mara watched as her husband approached the chaise longue, the laptop held out front as though he was offering her the very core of himself. She deigned to sit up.

Despite the killer blow being delivered to her husband (who had single-handedly brought that insufferable Spalding woman’s blog out of the pit of unfiltered slurry it inhabited in 2014, when he took it over while the odious harlot was on holidays) she couldn’t be disappointed in Tark. He was simply too magnificent. All five-feet-two of him strode across their palatial living room like he owned it, and indeed he did: he owned it, and the building, and Billy the concierge downstairs, who was now so beholden to Tark that Billy’s grandchildren owed him 93% of their college funds, and 7% of their souls.

“The sweet smell of success might be a little staler than she thinks. Let’s see that flab-ridden silage-odoured culchie ingrate ‘Freshly Press’ this.” Tark handed Mara the laptop.

Mara gasped. Nobody would ever be able to tell that the image had been photoshopped. It was perfect.

985,000 of Tark’s most ardent Facebook fans were about to see a tagged photograph of Tara Spalling posing in the African savanna over the pitiable X-eyed carcasses of six giraffes, a black rhino, eleven lemurs, and what looked like a rare albino giant anteater. In one hand she gripped an AK-47; the other was wrapped around the neck of an extremely dead West Highland Terrier called Percy, who had achieved stratospheric fame the previous month on YouTube, for his reaction to being called the cutest cutie in the whole wide world.

“She can have her increased blog traffic,” said Tark, his eyebrows wagging diabolically with uncontained excitement. “But she may not like what her new readers have to say.”Tark and Mara Rail at Freshly Pressed Injustice

The most uncharacteristic sound escaped from Mara: a passer-by might have mistaken it for a girlish giggle, but they would have been piteously wrong. She put the laptop aside and leapt from the chaise-longue to wrap herself around her husband, smothering his baldy head with kisses.

“You make me weak with your genius,” she said, looking down into his love-filled eyes.

“Well, I know you’re not due your weekly meal until tomorrow, my sordid little sausage,” said Tark, freeing one hand to reach up and stroke his wife’s temporarily less austere face. “But I’ll take the compliment all the same.”

  62 comments for “Tark And Mara Rail Against “Freshly Pressed” Injustice

  1. August 12, 2015 at 7:37 am

    So where’s the picture? I thought you would include it, since I’m not on Tark’s FB feed.

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 9:28 am

      Although you get points for not being on Tark’s FB feed, I’m afraid I can’t help you in some nefarious quest to help stitch me up. Shame on you, I thought we were getting on so well. My lawyers are all over it as we speak.

      Liked by 1 person

      • August 12, 2015 at 9:43 am

        Beware, I’m a lawyer too!

        Liked by 2 people

        • August 12, 2015 at 9:52 am

          I know. This is why I’m so shocked that you haven’t already approached me with the offer of pro bono work. But there’s still time…


  2. August 12, 2015 at 7:42 am

    Brilliant – and congrats!

    Did you have to post that wretched socialist paradise photo, though? I now have to dash off to the swimming pool to wash the vicarious stench of the unwashed hordes off of me, even if the waters’s still not at perfect temperature…

    Liked by 1 person

    • August 12, 2015 at 9:29 am

      You kind of lost me at ‘dash off to the swimming pool’, Nick. But while you’re there, could you please tell your butler to stop sending me begging letters?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. August 12, 2015 at 8:14 am

    “Somewhere in Dublin 3, a Jack Russell whined.” *wipes eye*

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 9:30 am

      Awwww Tenderness, that’s tender πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • August 14, 2015 at 11:00 am

        How’s it going now, Tara – you still basking in the freshly impressed super glow?

        Liked by 1 person

        • August 14, 2015 at 11:17 am

          Oh God yeah Tenderness, in fact thanks for asking so that I can throw in another layer of basking. My inbox looks like an encrypted document and I have psychological repetitive strain injury but I’m on the pig’s back. Not the same pig from the inappropriate stock photo, mind you. My pig is a lot cheerier.

          Liked by 1 person

          • August 14, 2015 at 11:30 am

            Fab. I see the annual livestock show is on next week. I’ll watching in the hope that Tark has entered Mara as the IFC Rose this year.

            Liked by 2 people

            • August 14, 2015 at 11:41 am

              Yes. That has approximately the same probability as a the longevity of a frozen sphere of water in an ideological furnace, but you should definitely keep watching out for it.

              Liked by 1 person

  4. August 12, 2015 at 8:15 am

    Well done on being Freshly Pressed! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Ali Isaac
    August 12, 2015 at 8:27 am

    You are freshly pressed??? That’s so cool! Get ready for the madness, and enjoy! Congratulations!

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 9:32 am

      ‘Tis gone a bit mad alright, Ali. My notifications look a bit like a an army in the grip of a mass vomiting bug. But it’s all full of woohoo!


  6. August 12, 2015 at 9:42 am

    Wow! Celebrations are in order. I can now tell my friends that I once commented on a Freshly Pressed article. I’m gonna dine out on this until they throw me into the canal. The sociological term is known as Latent Fame; ie basking in someone else’s success. (Or in social media patois, #Tentfaming.)

    The big question, though, is not why Mara would kiss the bald head of a goblin, or whether Tark uses a legitimate Adobe Cloud account to fiddle about with Photoshop, but why WordPress took so long to present an award to your blog?

    PS will you start to #monetize the blog now #that you’re #@freshlypressed? This could be quite lucrative.

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 9:43 am

      PPS After reading this post I went to another blog that I’ve commented on in the past. . . and he’s ‘freshly pressed’ too. How famous am I?

      Liked by 2 people

      • August 12, 2015 at 9:57 am

        Sorry, I went to reply a few minutes ago, and became too starstruck to hit the keys properly. So yes, Chris, you’re not only really bloody famous, but also renowned to an intimidating degree. Just don’t send the heavies round.

        I like your hashtags. Are they designer? I tried to #monetize this blog once, but it put me off, because I only ended up with 3 sweet wrappers, the wilted green head of a carrot, and a Russian spaniel called Traci. If your other freshly pressed friend has any tips, could you pass them on?

        Liked by 1 person

        • August 12, 2015 at 10:13 am

          I won’t send the heavies round. We famous types have to stick together in case the jealous plebs start to turn ugly.

          My hashtags, like everything of mine, have a certain boutique quality, in that very very very few people have ever heard of them. And I like that exclusivity. I’m sure Tark and Mara would understand.

          I’ll speak to the other freshly pressed chap and hope he’s in the mood to bother with me.

          Liked by 1 person

  7. August 12, 2015 at 10:38 am

    Hilarious! That’s made me laugh out loud on an otherwise boring Wed morning.
    Huge congrats to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • August 12, 2015 at 11:07 am

      And most gratefully received! Thanks Donna. Bit of craic anyway.


  8. August 12, 2015 at 11:33 am

    Well done young one. Delira an excira for ye. Well deserved. Danno from Darndale sends his best . Jimmy said give him a shout if you get any more grief from that spanner in D4..See ye later I’m off to freshly press his suit for de wedding.

    Liked by 3 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 11:50 am

      Ah, Danno. Yes indeed. Tell him to give me back my chainsaw, would you? Have a great time at de weddin’ and mind yer ha’

      Liked by 1 person

  9. August 12, 2015 at 11:43 am

    CONGRATULATIONS Tara…I hope Tark and Mara get tangled up in their bling-like accoutrements (Gold Neck Chains and jewelled iWatch wristbands),,, πŸ˜€

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 11:51 am

      Thanks, Chris! I’m sure Tark and Mara will get over it. When all comes to all, they’re the richest people I know, and I’m the poorest person they hate. They’ll realise that eventually.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Jools
    August 12, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    Well done on being FP’d Tara.! Having basked in the unimaginable glory and submerged under the tsunami of new followers when I got FP’d myself. I know how it goes. Be chuffed! Well deserved. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 2:14 pm

      It’s a bit mental, isn’t it Jools? You expect a torrent of Likes but it’s actually a torrent of followers. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think it was kind of cool πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jools
        August 12, 2015 at 2:50 pm

        For sure it’s cool! It lifted my blog up from nowhere, hits in single figures, and revitalised my enthusiasm for blogging. Enjoy what it gives you today, and for the future of your blog. 😊


        • August 12, 2015 at 2:59 pm

          I’m lucky, I think, because it already felt like a sort of rollercoaster, but today it feels more like a rollercoaster with airbags, anti-nausea tablets and 17 buckets of champagne at the end πŸ˜€

          Liked by 1 person

  11. August 12, 2015 at 2:09 pm

    Ah, global lentil shortage. Now that’s the kind of simile that needs freshly pressing. I’m still giggling. Poor tark and Mara.
    Way to get pressed.

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 2:17 pm

      Thanks, Naptime. I’m a little flattened, but none the worse for wear.

      Liked by 1 person

      • August 12, 2015 at 2:24 pm

        Got any groupies yet? I could be a very good groupie, you know. Maybe even head groupie. I’ll send my resume.

        Liked by 1 person

        • August 12, 2015 at 10:20 pm

          I have a socialist groupie system, Naptime, so you’ll have to sing for it. How’s your ragtime trad opera?

          Liked by 1 person

          • August 12, 2015 at 11:53 pm

            Well, in the real world, I may or may not be quite accomplished as a singer of opera opera… So I’ll take you up on it. I also may or may not have a minor in voice from a rather prestigious university. Didn’t you read my resume? Jeez. She gets freshly pressed and immediately forgets the little people. Typical.

            Liked by 2 people

            • August 13, 2015 at 12:02 am

              I haven’t read your resume yet, I’m waiting for a call back from the hieroglyphic translation people. Although I don’t mind telling you, the middle bit looked very rude.

              Liked by 1 person

  12. Niamh
    August 12, 2015 at 9:36 pm

    Seriously well done T, super delighted for you (and Tark and Mara…ish… If they’d consider joining the celebrations)! Insert delirious face here : ) (or digital version thereoff at least)

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 12, 2015 at 11:44 pm

      Thanks Neev. I was going to celebrate, but the angry mob outside my door suggested I might like a quiet night in. As soon as I finish Photoshopping some Penney’s tracksuits into pics of Tark and Mara I’m going to make a lovely cuppa.


  13. August 12, 2015 at 10:03 pm

    Congratulations, on being Freshly Pressed, Tara! Doing my happy dance for you! Tark and Mara would be outraged, I’m sure, but that’s the way we like ’em! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚


    • August 12, 2015 at 11:45 pm

      I’m running a small generator with the steam from their ire, actually. Took 10 euro off last month’s bill. Every cloud, and all that πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  14. August 13, 2015 at 3:47 pm

    Ok so time to admit I didn’t realise.the kudos of being freshly pressed, but thanks to your post I investigated and can see why Tark and Mara are p****d off. Well done, deservedly so. πŸ˜†

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 13, 2015 at 4:26 pm

      Thanks Yvonne! I was so chuffed, I almost made Tark smile. Almost…


  15. August 15, 2015 at 11:55 am

    Reblogged this on Random Thoughts and commented:
    Tara Sparling, the author of a blog that I follow closely, recently had a post featured on Freshly Pressed! How she reacts to it is just epic (How I hate that word…but it is the only word that comes close to describing the post’s well..epicness!) I just could not resist sharing the post. So here it is!

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 15, 2015 at 2:12 pm

      Thank you Anvita! Tark and Mara would pass on their regards, but unfortunately they don’t have any for anyone. So let’s just pretend they did instead.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Joan Brady
    August 16, 2015 at 3:30 pm

    Congratulations Tara – very impressed altogether.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. August 17, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    πŸ™‚ You’re a rare one. Congratulations!

    Liked by 1 person

    • August 17, 2015 at 4:06 pm

      Thanks, Jackie! That reminds me, I must buy steak on my way home… πŸ˜‰


  18. August 17, 2015 at 5:37 pm


    Liked by 2 people

  19. Alex Hurst
    August 18, 2015 at 3:13 pm

    Congratulations on getting FP, Tara!! That’s so awesome. πŸ˜€ Haters gonna hate, but you deserve it. Well done! ^_^

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 18, 2015 at 3:32 pm

      Thanks, Alex! Who knows what I deserve. Although I don’t think anyone deserves Tark and Mara. πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • Alex Hurst
        August 18, 2015 at 4:52 pm

        Yeah, no thank you! Haha.

        Liked by 1 person

  20. August 18, 2015 at 10:44 pm

    From the diamond clanking on bone onwards you had me. Is it fun being a wench?

    Liked by 2 people

    • August 18, 2015 at 10:59 pm

      Oh gosh, Hilary, yes. You should see what they said about me which had to be censored from this article. I had the NSA on to me and everything.

      Liked by 1 person

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