Archive for September, 2003

Rearrange: Blessings count your

Tuesday, September 30th, 2003

Media today is full of TB’s speech to the Labour Party conference. Hyped as ‘the most important speech of his career’ as Prime Minister, his every word and expression is being analysed. It appears that it’s been decided that he’s possibly on the way out. That there are large groups of voters who’ve ‘had enough’. Now Gordon is being wheeled on to provide a means to dig away at TB’s position and try to excavate some kind of chasm between them.

I suppose it’s the nature of adversarial politics to stick the knife in and there’s an inbuilt tendency in our society to whinge about politicians, ‘the government’ and the ‘state of the country’. I’m out on the edge here but I can’t help thinking, ‘what’s all the fuss about?’

Any country that has shops where you choose from sixty kinds of yogurt and fifty kinds of bread as opposed to not having any bread at all. People throw away newspapers rather than never have the chance to buy them. Dogs live in more comfort than your average African child and we can afford to pay people to represent our views in a democratic forum. You can’t deny that such a country is doing OK for itself – party policies aside. Looking around the world I can think of many many leaders who are far worse than TB – I can’t think of many who are better.

Slag him if you wish – I do on a regular basis – but this is one of those times when, even with all the stuff I don’t like, I realise – it could be a whole lot worse – oh yes.

BBC Cloning scandal:"we were desperate" confesses Greg

Monday, September 29th, 2003
Laurence Den
“Roccoco
darling”
“Allo
princess”

BnJ may go offline for a while tomorrow. I’m sailing v.close to the edge on bandwidth this month having reached around 2.5k hits in September. A large quantity of these appear to be due to sex crazed individuals in search of material related to d*****g ( see September 18th). The price of topicality eh? Anyway – apologies if your innocent BnJ pleasure is interrupted owing to me being too mean to pay for more bandwidth. I should be back on Wednesday with any luck.

Sunday, September 28th, 2003

Lol

Newspam: this just in from the University of Dyslexia

Dipmola Paorrgm

Caerte a mroe prosperous furute for youlserf

Reiecve a full diploma form non actredcied

univeriseits beasd uopn yuor rael life epexrience

You will not be tested, or interevewid

Reevice a Masetr’s, Bhcoelar’s or Dactorote

Call 24 huors a day 7 days a week

This is a real spam email – honest

Who will it be?

Saturday, September 27th, 2003

New Doctor Who – casting guide.

Not just any old actor can play Doctor Who. Certain characteristics have to be present I believe. I’ve therefore compiled a list and rated a selection of potential Doctor Whos – I’m spoiled for choice – so much so I will be publishing part 2 of the guide later next week. Any suggestions for inclusions gratefully received.

weirdness factor
10
5
8
9
7
8
mesmerising eyes
8
5
8
8
4
6
idiosyncratic hairstyle potential
10
5
8
7
2
8
kooky voice
5
6
9
9
10
9
gadget credibility
3
6
1
8
7
4
irony quotient
7
10
2
8
8
10
crossroads rating
4
9
5
7
9
5
drD’s overall score / 70
47
46
41
56
47
50

All scores out of 10

Lol

“Reminiscent of a recently violated meerkat in a gay bouffant competition, skittering around wearing a hideous salmon pink shirt tucked into his chinos, this fictional Blair cries out to be despised.”

Charlie Brooker reviews C4’s The Deal in Guardian Guide.

Friday, September 26th, 2003

I’m so excited.

I’m off to polish up my sonic screwdriver.

Thursday, September 25th, 2003

How long will it be before driving whilst using a handheld mobile phone will become as socially unacceptable as drink driving?

As the poster above from Wiltshire Police illustrates there’s no disputing that the effects of this on driving performance are serious. Most drivers, if asked, would probably agree that it’s best not to phone when driving. There’s plenty of good advice around too. News services have been active in documenting the problems and dangers caused by this activity. The Weekly Gripe details some interesting experiences of this. Despite numerous police campaigns and dire warnings – it still goes on.

Today, as most days, I spotted numerous mobile users whilst driving. What distresses (and angers) me most is when I see articulated lorry or van drivers using the phones. The lethality of a large vehicle like that is unthinkable when it goes out of control and the lives lost and ruined as a result unforgivable. I have a sneaking suspicion that many companies operate on the basis that their staff will use mobiles whilst on the move. I’d like to see a campaign against liveried vehicles carrying drivers using mobiles. If you see a vehicle with a phone number or email address painted on the side and the driver is using a mobile – do your bit and contact the company to tell them it’s unacceptable. Sooner or later a corner has to be turned on this issue. If you’ll pardon the pun

Group activities

Wednesday, September 24th, 2003

“By the strength of our common endeavour we achieve more than we achieve alone”

Recognise this?

Seemed to fit with my mood today. As someone who often works alone it does really feel good to, on occasion, join in with others on a ‘common endeavour’. There is something about everyone getting stuck into a task that taps into some deep seated thing we have for cooperative enterprise.

People become animated, joke with each other, barriers come down. It made me think of my comments back in February about the hunting chimps. There was a collective will at work there that just took hold of the group and they all went off on their murderous mission. I wonder what it is about us that needs this group bonding thing? It’s like we become more alive and have a heightened sense of ourselves. There’s definitely a feeling of creative potential I find – and a tremendous sense of reward when a task is achieved.

Of course when combined with our capacity for technological invention it becomes very powerful indeed. Witness the modern phenomenon that is The Call Centre. It seems that our whole economy is being run by groups of people gathered in grey buildings on the edges of towns plugged into phone systems. There is a mystique about call centres that most of us don’t begin to understand. Like some 21st century religion, we know it only by it’s signs – “Press 1 for sales, Press 2 to be ignored for half an hour whilst we play office basketball”, the breathy tones of Sexy Simon when he offers to ‘direct your call’ [ I so want my call ‘directed’ – so much more aspirational than being put through to Doris in accounts ], the anticipation when the cheesemoosak halts abruptly and you hear that pseudo ringtone that tells you you’re about to make contact with a fellow human.

Frankly I’d rather build tree houses in the woods with my fellow chimps.

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2003



Serious Pollution in Sao Paulo

Now this is my idea of pollution.

A large spillage of liquid chocolate in the road at Sao Paulo leads to people rolling around in the road in all that loveliness. Children had to be dragged from the scene.

Read the report in Portugese here.

Why oh why do road accidents like that never happen outside my house?

I wonder if Jim could fix a pile up of Ferrero Rocher in my parking bay?

[Apologies to my Portugese and Brazilian readers for confusing your beautiful language with the other one – it was the chocolate you know – it does things to my brain]

Linkage

It has come to my attention that linkage from Blog God, Mike at Troubled Diva has been bestowed. I am umbled beyond h and I thankyewmuchly Mike.

I am in need of revised mutuality over there on the left so I will be updating soonish

Oh my gawd – it's a giant Venezuelan guineapigrun for your life

Monday, September 22nd, 2003



Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a giant rodent that lurked along the riverbanks of Venezuela 8 million years ago. It was thought to employ novel food gathering techniques. Apparently it would creep up on unsuspecting fishermen, scare the shite out of them by virtue of it’s sheer bulk and then scoff their tiddlers in an orgy of fish fuelled frenzy. Any resemblance to Ann Widdecombe is purely coincidental. Plus I couldn’t find any well known Venezuelan landmarks for comparitive purposes and I’ve always admired the Eiffel Tower so I used that.

Woof

The BnJ server is in need of emergency compost supplies. Since I wrote about a certain new craze on Thursday there have been endless visitors to the site. You know when you drive too fast and you see the speedo getting higher and higher and you have a strange feeling that you want to slow down but somehow you want to go faster to see what it’s like? Well that’s what’s happening to my stats right now – ooh er.

No doubt they are seeking a refreshing take on contemporary life – a brief respite from the melee of ill informed badinage that can wear one so.

How touching and how we misjudge our fellow man eh?

Saved by Skippy

Lets hear it for the Kanga.

Handsome is as handsome does

Sunday, September 21st, 2003



Last week to Kew Gardens, now a ‘World Heritage Site’ (one of 754 global sites so designated). And walking through a shady glade what should we come across but a handpainted brace of golden pheasants meandering aimlessly through the undergrowth looking impossibly gorgeous like some kind of pointless dandies from a bygone age. ‘What’s your job then?’, I asked. ‘We just wander around looking gorgeous’, came the reply in closely garbled pheasantian. A mad lady, who was passing by, then decided to tell us that there are also some silver pheasants at Kew – who stalk a different part of the gardens looking slightly less gorgeous – if this photo of a partially sighted one at Seneca Park Zoo in New York State is anything to go by. So this lead me to thinking, “I wonder if handsome creatures such as golden pheasants and all manner of other beautiful birds – many of which appear to live in Australia (no fools them) – actually know that they are handsome and gorgeous?”. The mad lady was no help when I asked her, she just giggled and kept staring at me goggle eyed – maybe she was overcome with my own gorgeousness – who knows. Anyway Kew is a wonderful place to go at any time of year. I always resolve to become Alan Titchmarsh after I’ve been there and to work more closely with nature etc. The only thing I don’t like about the gardens is the fact that about 1 thousand jumbo jets fly over at low altitude whilst you are there. Being near Heathrow Airport does not help I suppose. At the moment they have an aerial walkway made from scaffolding by which you can ascend into the treetops and walk through the canopy of a giant redwood grove – this has to be experienced. There is something about looking from on high down the sheer length of a giant redwood trunk that does strange things to your lower colon. I shall not be repeating the experience. I did, though, save numerous small children from certain death as they ran, out of control, along the walkway headlong towards the barrier and a 60 foot drop to the forest floor. Hero? moi? aw shucks.