Archive for February, 2005

Saturday, February 26th, 2005
“Better to light a candle than curse the darkness.”
RIP Peter Benenson 1921-2005
Founder, Amnesty International

Linkage
Many thanks to Keefieboy and Tim ( and his brain ) for linkage – I am honoured you might read this guff let alone link to it.


Our Eurovision hope
..is due to be eight months preggers when she waddles on to the stage in Kiev on 21st May – [ the day before my birthday – NB: Amazon wishlist to follow soon ]. Jordan is the perfect Eurovision contestant. The fact that she may drop a sprog on stage in front of 80 billion viewers can only add to the drama and anticipation of the night. Better order in an industrial defibrilator for Terry Wogan Aunty Beeb.

Misspent youth
In the week when it looks like the curse of A’ Levels will persist ever longer it was gratifying to learn that the up and coming generation are adopting interweb technology to fail their exams. This site documents one young man’s quest to plumb political depths in pursuit of academic procrastination. It makes for a very entetaining read – especially the letters written by politicians desperate to appear ‘with it’. ‘It’ being a genetic trait absent from the bodies of all politicians. The photograph of Denis Healey on a death slide is particularly entertaining. You can’t imagine Gordon goofing off like that can you?
Interestingly, if you type www.labour.org.uk/gordonbrown into your browser you get a blank page headed ‘news’ and a button with a grinning TB reading, “ask the Prime Minister”. Curious that.

Spring fashions at Aldi

Thursday, February 24th, 2005


…are on my mind. Something lightweight, flattering, hitech, cheap.
Hmmm – if only I could find something like that in silver grey..

0 no
0870 = 7.5p per minute = £$£kerching! thankyewverymuch.
I hate scumbag organisations that make you pay extra phone charges to provide you with a service you are already paying for. Currently on drD’s loathelist:
1. My Luxury Insurance Company who never phone you back even when they promise to, keep you queueing for at least 10 minutes every time you call and then transfer you around the world when you get through. If I was paying 0870 rates I’d be going round there with a baseball bat by now. Little do they know my secret*
2. Government departments that insist that you contact them via 0870 numbers then can’t deal with your enquiry getting you to email them instead then taking 25 days to answer your email with a response that is useless. Little do they know my secret*
3. GP surgeries that oblige you to contact them via 0870 numbers for appointments / prescriptions / coronary attacks brought on by large phone bills. Little do I care that their cheap scam is being stopped.

* Say no to 0870 + 18866.com = Kerching! for me & u2?
[ 1p per call – even if it takes 5 hours! – ha ha ha *strokes white pussy & twitches* ]

Snow joke

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2005

Here in Bignjuicyville the whole town has ground to a halt because a snowflake has fallen from the sky.
Trains have been derailed. Old ladies forced to spend the night in their cars in Aldi’s carpark and schoolchildren have been instructed to stay at home with their playstations tuned to Bignjuicy Radio [ “96.9 The Juicy One” ].This, just in case the Headmaster’s wife can’t stand him at home and he decides to open the school tomorrow after all.

I took the opportunity this afternoon to sample the delights of a deserted townscape. Every inhabitant seemed to have decided it was not a good idea to ‘go out in that’. ‘That’ being a rather festive blizzard. The kind of blizzard that should be in black and white, featuring Jimmy Stewart and some rosy cheeked children. The kind of blizzard we always dream about at Christmas but never get. People in Bignjuicyville do not know the meaning of the word ‘blizzard’. I remember when I was in the Antarctic in ’82 – the snow was eighteen feet high and I had to eat my own thigh to survive. Even the Huskies were gnawing hopefully on the Captain’s rump – but that’s another story. I’m ever-incredulous that snow takes us by surprise, people whinge about it, everything stops etc etc. Forgawdsakegeddoverit. I actually quite enjoyed going out in it.

Tufty the Duck was frollicking about in the local river when I passed by. I think the low temperatures affect him and actually increase his metabolism. Who in their right mind would want to go swimming in sub zero water after all? Tomorrow I have to go to Greenwich. This will involve train travel. Complete the sequence: Snow, train travel, ??

Handy hints

Monday, February 21st, 2005

Trains
The national rail timetable website is wonderful. NOT.
“Please Wait” messages, expiring sessions and an, until recent, inability to let you know that the train it is telling you to catch has in fact been cancelled due to nuclear war – conspire to cause immense dissatisfaction. Rejoice then, for someone has undertaken the impressive feat of re-writing the enquiry system and doing it much better. Accessible UK Train Timetables cuts the c**p and gives it to you straight – no messing. As a blogger once said, ‘It’s better’.

Democracy
From the same people that brought you Faxyourmp.com [not a typo] and www.traintimes.org.uk [ see above ] plus several other great and functional sites we have theyworkforyou.com. This is a really great idea that lets you check up on what your highly paid MP actually does for his or her wad. You can also comment on what they are up to. It’s the closest I’ve seen yet to electronic democracy. [ not nearly close enough but it’s a start ].

drD’s wine of the week

&nbsp This week’s wine comes to you from the strictly budget end of the scale. It is Tesco Australian Red Anonymous red wine in screw top bottles costing £2.60 is probably not the sort of thing you want to admit to cleaning your toilet with – let alone drinking. Let alone publishing it on your website for all to read and laugh at. I have no shame, for I have the last glass [hic]. This is truly the aussie bargain of the year [Kylie’s knockdown ebay underwear sale notwithstanding]. As smooth as a young doctors bedside manner, as fruity as Dame Edna’s er fruitbowl, as silky Robert Kilroy Silk in a silk thong [hold that image]. This is gluggable quality. Better than many bottles costing twice as much. Shtrongly recommended. [80p off if you buy 6 – available by the bottle at a store near you]

Weather forecast

When horses fall in love

Sunday, February 20th, 2005

What offspring there might have been…

Prince Wayne Princess Chloe

Pointless

What have we learnt this week?

Saturday, February 19th, 2005

Alan can iron 30 shirts in a single session and is currently decluttering.
The Sir John Soane Musuem would probably cause Alan some anxiety as it seems to me the must cluttered museum I have ever been in. I was almost too frightened to walk round it for fear of blundering into some priceless objet d’art.
Crime solution means filling in forms – lots of them.
Weapons of mass destruction go missing in cumbria. Our man at the scene.
I’m a cranky old man – it’s official.
Gene Kelly can do hip hop. It’s a stunning work of art – see it. [Quicktime]. Interview with ‘Gene’ here.

&nbsp

Treble six

Thursday, February 17th, 2005

The whole ‘evil’ thing is gaining more of a foothold in public consciousness lately. If it’s not the ramblings of George W it’s the attribution of anything inexplicable by ‘normal’ standards as evil. Thus, disturbing murders such as that of Jodi Jones featured much reporting of the killers fascination with satanic imagery. Marilyn Manson was obliged to distance himself from the case and blamed it on the parents. Then there was the news that Channel 4 were going to broadcast “I’m a demon get me out of here”. Now I learn that my spiritual HQ quietly published, ‘De Exorcismis et supplicationibus quibusdam’, or Exorcism : The Rough Guide. [ Haven’t been able to find it on Amazon disappointingly ]. Now they are offering evening classes in exorcism at a Roman university. [Bring your own crucifix]. I don’t really know what to think about evil. On the one hand I think, ‘it’s just a label used when people can’t be bothered or don’t have the wherewithal to figure out the real cause of nasty stuff’. On the other, when confronted with nasty individuals it’s hard to rationalise their behaviour and recourse to thinking of them as ‘evil’ seems appropriate.

We are sailing…close to desperation

B&Q will be keeping its fingers crossed that its association with MacArthur, who set a new round-the-world solo sailing record, will bring more shoppers to its stores”
Hmm – interesting logic- Thinks: “Oooh there is a big orange yacht with Ellen beating the world record – must rush out and buy overpriced paint and plastic garden chairs!” I don’t get it. If I need putty I’ll go and buy putty (from Wickes because it’s cheaper). If I need a new shed I’ll build one from the extensive Bignjuicy rainforest thinnings. If I need plastic garden chairs – I’ll book myself in for psychiatric assessment at Bedlam NHS Trust n Garden Centre (Investors in People).

One laptop per child
“The deeper divides are unequivocally proportional to education. Peace will never happen as long as there is poverty. Poverty can only be eliminated through education.”
Visionary stuff from Nicholas Negroponte. One day everyone will have a cheap, reliable portable gizmo that does everything everywhere. Using IT to alleviate poverty is a really exciting idea.

We are what we consume?

Wednesday, February 16th, 2005

My mental shift from ’employed’ to ‘self employed’ continues. I’ve become far more conscious of maximising value from everything and also feeling a bit more vulnerable than I used to about, costly, unexpected setbacks – one of which was just over a week ago. My personal crimwave took a new turn today as I discovered a break in had occurred overnight. One has to wonder, ‘why me’? Could have been worse. Could have been better. More insurance c**p to contend with. More policy excesses I can ill afford. Ho hum. It’s the invasion aspect more than anything else that is really not nice at all.
Send me some good news / vibes please I need them right now.

Chasing inventories, bank statements and receipts for the above made me think about how a life is represented by what it consumes and leaves behind. Imagining someone else going through all the paperwork in the house, uncovering the details of your life. Made me wonder what impressions they would form. Earlier in the week I was doing a bit of research for someone that involved reading through documents from early last century. Newspaper cuttings, letters, photographs and, most interestingly, wills. A will is a matter of public record – I think anyone can obtain a copy of most wills if they handle the application appropriately. Yet a will must be one of the most personal summative things a person ever does. Hard not to see it as a summary of what someone achieves in their life – a final totting up. But it’s only monetary after all and what can you say about the real someone behind the figures? It’s only a part of the picture. It was interesting to me that of all the documents I read – it was the wills that interested me most. Nosey sod I may be. Not unusual in this I’m sure. How quickly I was able to judge what sort of people had written the wills from what they mentioned, what they didn’t mention. How skilled I am at ‘getting to the bottom line’ when assessing this sort of thing. Interesting that and something we’re all part of simply because we have to trade to live. Yet if that’s how most ‘ordinary’ lives are represented and remembered in history that’s rather sad?

Monday

Monday, February 14th, 2005

Drone 2
Northeast Regional Accent [we really care oop heer bonny lad] CallCentre Drone no 83 called me this morning to say that they had agreed to allow me to keep my car and get it repaired as an alternative to it being melted down and sold to Del Boy. How gracious of them. B******s.

Award
I’ve won an award from BW because she laughed at me last week – but not as much as she laughed at DG only she can’t give the award to him because he’ll do something to her if she does. Complications. It was never like this when I got my Golden Glove.

Recycling
I’ve been reading through my archives today. Is it bad if you laugh at your own jokes?

It’s all getting out of hand
Further to the gay penguins story on Saturday.
“Gay groups insisted that penguins had a right to form couples without human interference”.
It can only be a matter of time before a tasteful campaign is launched.
This sounds like job for Gay Penguin for America.

Die nasty

Saturday, February 12th, 2005

“Blake suffers dizzy spells as Rita’s slow poisoning takes effect. Anxious to secure the Carrington estate, Joel convinces Rita to administer the fatal dose. Joel professes his love to Krystle, who insincerely returns his affections in an attempt to win her freedom. When this fails, she desperately feigns illness in a second ploy to escape. An enraged Steven engages Bart Fallmont in hand-to-hand combat over the pipeline construction. Dex is granted full building rights. Claudia hastens to Oklahoma to fight for her oil well, leaving a bewildered Adam behind. Alexis receives a mysterious phone call from Caracas, where her imprisoned sister, Caress Morell, is set free in exchange for the “Alexis Carrington-Dexter Story”. Sammy Jo discovers the empty vial of poison, and confronting an alarmed Rita, begins to suspect Joel’s deadly plan.”

They don’t write em like this anymore – Emmerdale eachyerheartout.
But, I’m telling you the plot – go read it for yourself.

Gay penguins
…at Bremen Zoo. I bet it’s the cleanest pool in the neighbourhood.