Sunday, 29 August 2010

Fire!

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Around ten thirty this morning I discovered these machines were standing outside the door. The disused 'Clinic' building appeared to have a problem. No smoke, no flames, no screaming for help. 
Most disappointing I say!
This is not an unusual event round here. What with the skatepark and the neds that gather there I am surprised this old clinic has not burned down long since. However it was early on a Sunday and it is unusual to have anyone over seven or eight hanging around, and usually with a bored parent in tow at that time. Could this unexplained event be an actual accident? Well that would be a shock! There again my cynical mind wonders if it was an attempt to deliberately burn down the building? Indeed while there was no obvious fire at the time, just a fat policewoman ( I'd like to see her chase a baddie) talking into her phone while the firemen sat in the cab awaiting instructions. However when I passed on my constitutional tonight I did notice a slight rancid burning smell in the air indicating something had been burning. So this brings out the cynic in me. Who would benefit from this disused building burning down? The people selling the land it stands on maybe? The one who suggested creating a 93 bed hotel there? (93 beds? shome mishtake shurely?) The NHS Trust who own the thing? I wonder.....


Gosh, that was exciting, sometimes I wonder how I cope out here? In London we had proper fires with crowds, blocked streets, huge flames, and ladders reaching high into the sky. Out here two engines of part time firemen arrive and potter about. The police put up tape, the gas man comes along to check, a blue car owner shoves his nose in, and suddenly they are all off home for their dinner! They never even told me what happened.  Well that has taken all my energy, emotional and physical. Not quite so much as was removed when listening to Hearts World describing the game this afternoon, and isn't it a shame the Hibs are doing so badly? My exhaustion is such that I might just go back to bed....again.

.

Friday, 27 August 2010

Meet Charlie, George & Pete.....



I say........


They are three fungi's to be with.................







I'll get ma coat then........

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Thursday, 26 August 2010

William Topaz McGonagall 'Edinburgh'


Edinburgh
Beautiful city of Edinburgh!
Where the tourist can drown his sorrow
By viewing your monuments and statues fine
During the lovely summer-time.
I'm sure it will his spirits cheer
As Sir Walter Scott's monument he draws near,
That stands in East Prince's Street
Amongst flowery gardens, fine and neat.
And Edinburgh Castle is magnificent to be seen
With its beautiful walks and trees so green,
Which seems like a fairy dell;
And near by its rocky basement is St Margaret's Well,
Where the tourist can drink at when he feels dry,
And view the castle from beneath so very high,
Which seems almost towering to the sky.
Then as for Nelson's monument that stands on Calton Hill,
As the tourist gazes thereon, with wonder his heart does fill
As he thinks on Admiral Nelson who did the Frenchmen kill,
Then, as for Salisbury Crags, they are most beautiful to be seen,
Especially in the month of June, when the grass is green;
There numerous mole-hills can be seen,
And the busy little creatures howking away,
Searching for worms among the clay;
And as the tourist's eye does wander to and fro
From the south side of Salisbury Crags below,
His bosom with admiration feels all aglow
As he views the beautiful scenery in the valley below;
And if, with an observant eye, the little loch beneath he scans,
He can see the wild ducks about and beautiful white swans.
Then, as for Arthur's Seat, I'm sure it is a treat
Most worthy to be seen, with its rugged rocks and pastures green,
And the sheep browsing on its sides
To and fro, with slow-paced strides,
And the little lambkins at play
During the livelong summer day,
Beautiful city of Edinburgh! the truth to express,
Your beauties are matchless I must confess,
And which no one dare gainsay,
But that you are the grandest city in Scotland at the present day!    

Monday, 23 August 2010

How The Fight Started

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My  wife and I were sitting at a table at her high  school reunion, 
and she kept staring at a drunken man swigging his drink 
as he sat alone at a nearby table.
I asked her, "Do you know  him?"
"Yes", she sighed,
"He's my old  boyfriend.... I understand he took to drinking  right after we
split up those many years ago, and I hear he hasn't been sober since."
"My  Gosh!" I said, "Who would think a person could go on 
celebrating that long?"
And then the fight started...
 ________________________________
When our lawn mower broke and wouldn't run, 
my wife kept hinting to me that I should get it  fixed. 
 But, somehow I always had something else to take
care of first, the shed, the boat, making beer.. 
Always something  more important to me. 
Finally she thought of  a clever way to make her point.
When I arrived home one day, I found her seated in the tall grass, 
busily snipping away with a tiny pair of sewing scissors. 
I watched silently fora short time and then went into the house.. 
I was gone only a minute, 
and when I came out again I handed her a toothbrush.  
I said, "When you finish cutting the grass, 
you might as well sweep the driveway."

The doctors say I will walk again, but I will always  have a limp.
 ________________________________
My   wife sat down next to me as I was flipping  channels.
She asked, "What's on TV?"
I  said, "Dust."
And then the fight started...
 ________________________________


One   year, I decided to buy my mother-in-law a  
cemetery plot as a Christmas gift...
The next   year, I didn't buy her a gift.
When she asked  me why, I replied,
"Well, you still haven't used the gift I bought you last year!"
And   that's how the fight started.....
 ________________________________
My wife and I were watching Who Wants To Be A Millionaire 
 while we were in bed.
I turned to  her and said, 'Do you want to have Sex?'
'No,' she answered. I then said,
'Is that your final answer?'
She didn't even look   at me this time, simply saying, 'Yes..'
So I said, "Then I'd like to phone a friend."
And   that's when the fight started...
 ________________________________
I  took my wife to a restaurant.
The waiter, for some reason, took my order first.
"I'll have the rump steak, rare, please."
He said,    "Aren't you worried about the mad cow?"
"Nah,  she can order for herself."
And that's when the fight  started.....
 ________________________________


My wife was hinting about what she wanted
 for our  upcoming anniversary.
She said, "I want  something shiny that goes 
from 0 to 150 in about  3 seconds."


I bought her a bathroom scale.
And then the fight started......
 ________________________________
After retiring, I went to the Social Security office 
to apply for Social Security.
The woman behind the counter asked me for my driver's License 
 to verify my age.
I looked in my pockets and realized I had left my wallet at home.
I told the woman that I was very sorry, 
but I would have to go home and come back later.
The woman said, 'Unbutton your shirt'.
So I opened my shirt revealing my curly silver hair.
She said, 'That silver hair on your chest is proof enough for me' 
and she processed my Social Security application.
When I got home, I excitedly told my wife about my experience 
 at the Social Security office...
She said, 'You should have dropped your pants. 
You might have gotten disability, too.'
And then the fight started.
 ________________________________
My wife was standing nude, looking in the bedroom mirror.
She was not happy with what she saw and said to me,
"I feel horrible; I look old, fat and ugly.
I really need you to pay me a compliment.'
I replied, "Your eyesight's damn near perfect."
And then the fight  started........


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Sunday, 22 August 2010

Sky

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I am, as you know, keen on the sky! There are many reasons for this and watching gray Edinburgh skies for so long possibly ranks high amongst them. One thing for sure it is the late summer Edinburgh sky that I miss most from that city. Yesterday evening, resting from the strenuous efforts required while listening to the football on 'Sportsound,' I wandered around as the pretty girls, and one or two pretty boys, made their way to the drinking establishments to waste their cash and endeavour to increase the population. I found it strange that an activity that meant so much to me as a teenager did not move me much now. Instead I was fascinated with the mixture of coloured clouds drifting along on a south western breeze. As the sun went down the pinkish hues flavoured the otherwise gray clouds. The deep yellow sunshine joined in making the sky a  wondrous display. I suspect few bar myself would have noticed this. I like to think this is caused by my 'artistic nature,' although cynical folks of my acquaintance prefer to refer to me as a 'ponce' for reasons of their own.


  
This afternoon the sky was once again a mixture of cloud types. Mostly however, gray and dreich, which is a disappointment. You can tell how bright the sun was when shining through the gaps, and I notice outside the window, now that I am indoors, that the sun is shining brightly and the only clouds to be seen are big puffy white ones! Tonight will not be the night for skywards gazing. The darkening sky now speaks of the heavy rain the man on the BBC warned us about. Clean streets tomorrow I reckon! 

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Saturday, 21 August 2010

Speak!

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Another unwanted spammer has arrived, and after the Chinese porn merchants spamming many old posts I have decided to add the 'Comment Moderation' module to keep them off. This does mean I will forget to check for comments, much in the same way I tend to forget....er,.... whatever it was. Anyway I just thought you ought to know. 





Calum Elliot has suffered much from the cretins amongst the Hearts support in recent days. His role as a hard worker who fails to score has earned him abuse which I never felt was deserved. The abuse ought to have been directed elsewhere, are you listening Mr Nade? Elliot required more support for his hard work, and a solid centre forward whom he could work off. Under Jim Jeffries he has been encouraged to be himself and we now see the result. A.goal last week against St Johnstone, and two, apparently excellent, goals today against Hamilton Academical's! Personally I have always liked him, and felt the abuse unwarranted. There again as every player knows is that fans react like women, emotionally, not through understanding of the situation. Women have an excuse, they are female in the main, but football fans have no excuse whatsoever. From the fans viewpoint if the club is not winning then it's all HIS fault! The 'HIS' could be a variety of people, players, manager, directors, rarely do the fans get this right. Sadly few of us really understand what is happening on the field of play, we only know so much, and the management and paying staff alone understand the truth. I off course NEVER abuse any player at any time - not counting Danny Ferguson's own goal v St Mirren that time in the sleet of course! I am glad Clum has shown his talent. This puts pressure on the new boys Kevin Kyle and Stephan Elliott (with two 'T's) and can be no bad thing. With young players coming through and some players beginning to find their form I do believe we may be on the beginning of the good times once again. Not their yet, a long way to go, but things are looking up!

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Friday, 20 August 2010

Seventieth Anniversary of "The Few!"

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It is 70 years to the day when Winston Churchill gave his famous speech in praise of 'The Few.' The airmen who fought the Luftwaffe and defeated them and thwarted the German plans for an invasion of the United Kingdom. And this was a time when the kingdom was indeed united. This island would have stood alone had the enemy arrived on these shores!  Many now laugh at how they would have face the well drilled German army with prune hooks and home made spears,  but an attempt would have been made had it been necessary! 


It was of course more than aircraft that thwarted the enemy. Hitler in fact had no desire or genuine plan to invade Britain, his eye was towards the Soviet Union. The sinking of the French Fleet by the Royal Navy, one of the hardest decisions Churchill had to take, took from the enemy the shipping required to cross the channel. The bombers, suffering heavy losses, some 50,000 by wars end, hindered any genuine plan for invasion. Churchill's speech did bring the nation together, and that in a war is more important then anything. This is the reason the popular press continue to talk of the war, constantly reminding people that they won a victory! Indeed they did, eventually, but the nation was left bankrupt and broken, and has suffered ever since because f this war. Germany has flourished and questions why the British refer to the war so often. I suppose that having been the losing side that is to be expected is it not?


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Thursday, 19 August 2010

Thursday







I wandered around to the Labour Exchange feeling less guilty because of the small job I have obtained. John, the man wasting his life dealing with me, mentioned that I look so well because of this. In fact it was I had a second bath this month as well as my six month haircut that gave an improvement to the look. I suspect the dim lighting probably helped. What is it about women in offices? When not whining that they 'get paid less than the men' (as if!) they demand the best seats, the hating turned up, the best windows, and today they have blocked all the sunshine coming in the best windows because it is too bright! I read today another feminist lie that it will take 33 years until women 'at the top' (whatever that means) will be on equal pay to men. Bunkum! men will never be equal to these whining females. Our only hope is that this generation are ageing fast and will soon go, leaving behind the next, non feminist dominated generation. Hopefully they will be more grown up. However I doubt that even if they are they will moan less than wimmen do now!  It was indicated by some that women at the bottom are never mentioned by such 'chip on the shoulder' types. Could this be because they look down on them, or just don't care as long as they are doing fine I wonder? This does not of course indicate I have anything against wimmen, (the last time I had something against a women I got three months) they have their place, and their talents ought to be put to best use. As long as this does not interfere with the football or lead to whining and bitching about one another's earrings and dress sense!


Anyway, John, who rarely criticises the girls (he has been married a long time) gave me three more jobs to fail to get, and then through me out. I suddenly realised just how long I have been going there. Being over 55, indeed 45, without specific 'skills' as they say is not good today. 'Work until you are 70' is the latest idea, but only helpful if you have a job. The knee trouble is not bad enough to be solely responsible for this. Two short, okay, very short, days work shows this. I fear it is the lack of the skills required and being dumb that limit. Anyway, I keep getting letters from Multi Millionaire David Cameron and his lapdog Nick Clegg telling me to get out there and get a job! Join the 'Big Society,' "As long as you don't cost us anything," that is! Not that I am cynical, but the Con-Dem alliance does not have a clue what it is doing does it? Something George Osborne is reported to have said made me wonder if he is aware of the damage that will occur next year. Could it be he understands, and Yogi & Boo Boo have not, the mess that is just around the corner. The tax dodgers, especially the bigger companies, will still get away with their dodging, the benefit claimants will still increase in number and suffer abuse as scroungers, and the rich Tories will talk about 'fairness' and destroy the nation, blaming Labour, and do well themselves. It's Margaret Thatcher all over again, but this time without the intellect!


I take solace in small things, such as meeting a checkout lass with a sense of humour this morning, long before you lot were up, and discovering some meat hidden away at the back of the freezer. I wonder if those mushrooms were meant to be growing on it or have fallen out of something else....? I take much solace this afternoon in Classic FM and the gentle bassoon music at this moment gently drifting though my ears. Until I was twenty years of age, only a short time ago as it happens, I had no time for such stuff. My mind was fixed on Blues, and rock, pop music of the day, although I did listen to other stuff including Glen Miller, however I normally listened to any pirate radio ship that had not been impounded or Radio 1, and when did you or anyone you know last do that I wonder? However one day I played some of the stuff my brother had lying around.gathering dust. The 'Morning' sequence from Peer Gynt caught my attention as one of the most wonderful things I had ever heard! Listen hear, I mean here, and see, er.. hear for yourself!  I was hooked, and I owe all this to Edvard Greig, who I think once played for Rangers, but I may be wrong there. Since then I have listened to all sorts of 'classical' music, and even opera, and that in spite of the screeching wimmen that all too often spoil the music. 'Classic FM' at first received much derision from the snobbish element of the music world. They claimed it was only playing 'the best bits,' which says something about the rest of the music doesn't it! However it tapped into a great audience that I, and probably you, knew was there. Most folks had enjoyed classic music excerpts in films and on TV, usually in adverts, but it was not the 'done thing' to actually go out and buy classical music. Yet the audience was there. I think it was Piccadilly Radio in Manchester that had a late night Saturday programme of classical music that had become the most popular on the station. Classic FM enabled people to enjoy, I almost said 'actually enjoy' classical music without the snobbishness and pretence that goes along with it all to often. Such music was not seen to be for the 'working classes' but for those of a 'higher frame of mind.' What bunk! What a sham such attitudes reveal. There is indeed more to be gained from listening to Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony, No6 (a favourite) than from Susan Maughan singing Bobbies Girl, but both are just music, sounds that please the ear or not as the case may be, pretentiousness works both ways you know! I do hope you take the time to improve your lives by listening to these links. (I don't mean listen to the link itself I mean listen to the music at the other....oh never mind). Anyway these days I listen to a lot of classical music from one source or another, not the loud raucous stuff so much, more the tinkling type that quietly fills the background and upsets the Radio 3 snob. Indeed one famous singer complained that Morse, of 'Inspector Morse' fame, (the TV detective who had my mother afraid to go to Oxford, because she said, "There is a murder there every week!") this singer complained that Morse never really 'listened' to the music that was constantly playing in the background! Morse was of course attempting to solve murders, quite why he needed to 'listen' so intently I cannot fathom. I am reminded of the two men interviewed on Radio 3 one day long ago. One was a music critic and the other some sort of musician. At the end the interviewer asked them what music they listened to at home for relaxation. The musician spoke of a wide variety of different kinds of music but the music critic did not listen to any music at home whatsoever. He claimed he could not listen to it as he would just 'criticise it.' In short this man's world was music and he could not enjoy it! What a sad man I thought. However since then I have made no attempt to 'understand' music, I just like what I like and dislike what I don't like. Yes the Eurovison Song Contest just passed through my mind also there.


Ah well, that has finished my working day for me. Tomorrow, after finishing the housework and visiting the soup kitchen, I will make another effort to find a way to riches and contentment. Hmmm riches are easier to obtain, and I know that they do not bring contentment, but I would like to be miserable in comfort after all.

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Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Photo Blogs

Seeing as how you lot have ignored my Photo Blog for reasons of your own, I am here going to use others Photo Blogs to remind you of my talent their talent and allow you to take your minds far away from the stresses and strains of life! The obvious place to start is with the admirable 'A,' a pretty young lass (she says) with an enormous bank balance talent who makes me jealous every time I look at her pictures. 
She has her own excellent blog at 'A Changing Life' where she offers such 'snaps' as this:-  



Now of course she has added (and not before time) a Photo Blog, found here:- 'Photos From the Indre.'
This is done to reveal her talent and boast about her travels to places far and wide. Myself I managed to travel to the small industrial estate in the rain today, but I am not one to complain, even when it rained on the way back, thanks very much. This is an example of her 'Must see' work.:-
 


However enough of that woman, there is a man in far off Thailand who has nothing to do but be waited on hand and foot by pretty Thai women, drink cheap booze, and wander the country photographing railways and birds, the other kind of birds I mean. His fine Photo Blog is found here:- 
'My Thai Photo Blog'.



You will notice he has added his name at the bottom. I expect a bill for breaking copyright now! Sorry, I am out at the moment...


If you, like me, are attracted to bright flowers then there is a blog full of such photos in darkest Darlington, at least it was always dark when the train passed through when I was there. Susan has some wonderful shots, of which I am insanely jealous, of the plants growing around her. Fabulous pictures as I know you are bound to agree:- 'Susan's Garden'



Isn't that great?


I came across 'Edinburgh Day By Day' recently and as I like the idea of day by day pictures of places I have kept the link. This appears to be an outsiders view of Edinburgh, always an interesting viewpoint. When you are brought up there you do not see the city as an outsider does. In fact when I first began to return to Edinburgh I could not find anything to photograph! It was after some years away I noticed things around me I had taken for granted before! And of course there is nothing like watching the sunshine outside the window and logging in to watch Edinburgh under that large gray cloud is there! 




If you prefer sunshine a daily photo of Jerusalem shows everyday life in the warmth! The kind of life ignored by the media as just to 'common' for their readers:-' Jerusalem Hills Daily Photo.'  These shots remind me of the time I went there, just before the first Iraq War. Everyday shots including lots of sun and interesting historical buildings. 




The Englishmen among you, and I know you are out there, will be interested in 'Unmitigated England,' a jolly nice wee blog that shows pictures of, well... England of course! Well worth a look! Try the quiz you English folks, I canny do it!




Well what do you expect to find in England?


I love Photo Blogs as they show so much of the world I never see otherwise. Oh by the way, mine is there at 'The Adullamite Photo Blog' just in case you are interested in my snaps!


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Friday, 13 August 2010

Next Blog

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By pressing the 'Next Blog' button on 'Blogger'  we are often led into a world way outside of ourselves. I enjoy this. I like to search through the blogs and discover something new, exciting or interesting to read, view or contemplate. With billions of blogs out there, and huge numbers on 'Blogger' alone I would think it possible to meet new people and find a wealth of untapped experience world wide. Blogs often contain fabulous photographs, intelligent thought, or be based around a subject of great interest. All too often however the trawl through the 'Next Blog' button can be a real disappointment. This is partly my fault of course, I discovered one day I was finding loads of professional porn sites, and while these may have their place I don't agree with them on 'Blogger,' and see no reason why these folk should make money this way. We are not talking about the home made site young men, and a few women, contribute, often under the illusion of being 'art' sites, those are inevitable on here I suspect.  I complained about so many the Blog controllers have amended my choices now. I find only football blogs on the main blog, and 'The Past' leads me, for reasons unknown, to American farms! Tractors are all right in their place but  I prefer the nudes to be honest. Through using other folks blogs I can still surf happily but I find all the blogs offered are limited in number or type for some reason. With a billion blogs to choose from why do we only get led to a few at a time? This is somewhat irksome I say!


Early in the day I often come across sites based in South America. Spanish sites, in Latin nations and in Spain itself, are very different it seems to me from those found in the UK or US. The approach and the artwork reflects a different outlook on life. In times past at certain times in the day I used to find myself confronted with adolescents from the far east! Worldwide adolescent sites offer the same world view, and once you are past sweet sixteen it ceases to interest! It is also sometimes difficult to comprehend that the creature who prepares such a blog today may possibly one day be important in world politics! Pray now I say!


Today however I have been coming across American family blogs. Now using Blogger as a way to keep in touch with a world wide family is a great idea, and many there are who go in for this. However I do find that many of the (almost all white) American family blogs are just a touch twee. Everyone appears to be ever so happy. Mum and Dad love one another and the kids grow happily and safely, life is one bundle of innocent happy joy. Sorry but that does not seem real to me. Normal family life involves scowling and huffs, temper and jealousy, stress and a regular desire to throttle the kid, dad or mum! The US blogs appear to ignore this, reminiscent of the ending of so many American TV series where everybody gathers round smiling and happy, in spite of the previous 46 minutes in which death and destruction were seconds away, totally unrealistic! Had our family put out a  'Blog from Edinburgh' in the 50's I suspect there would have been a family concerned for one another but with a realistic attitude towards the brats (us) and the world outside. You don't live through a depression, a Miners strike lasting six months, and a world war and dwell in shmaltz! The smiles would have been genuine, but rarer than the despair and the recurrent phrase "I'll swing for you yet" that was heard rather too often when I was around. I canny imagine why?


American political blogs, indeed all non UK political blogs, leave me grateful we have our sensible, thoughtful, caring, evenly balanced politicians over here. (What do you mean sarcasm?) Political blogs mean little to the outsider, but when US ones quote Sarah Palin I am unsure whether they are spoofs or for real! One day that woman (?) might be president of the United States! (Back to prayer folks) Some of the US ones are difficult to distinguish from American Christian blogs. Unfortunately some Republicans think Jesus was born in Illinois and appear to think campaigning for lower taxes is a Christian duty. Wrong boy, wrong! There are however some fabulous photo blogs around! Whether  a professional or a serious amateur showing off their talent, or some doddery old fool (who are you looking at?) taking pics just for the sheer enjoyment it gives, either way there are some great shots to be found. Not only can these photos be enjoyable in themselves but they reveal parts of the world we would never find otherwise. They give an indication of life in places that are often greatly troubled, and writers in such places also show just how life goes on whatever the public image of the place. The TV & Radio media, like the papers, only give the image that sells, and the stories that fit their agenda, so much is ignored and the real state of a nation is usually distorted by the press.  Bloggers can, allowing for personal bias, give a truer picture of the world around them in such cases.


The same cannot be said for those who fill blogs with cookery! Is there not too much of that already on TV I ask? We need to eat but must we endure pages of cakes and stews? However peoples hobbies are often worth looking at, pictures from a garden for instance can be enjoyable, although someone enthusing about their new cushion design or the hand made curtains may leave some of us somewhat cold. However a blog stuffed full of aircraft or steam trains must be enjoyed by all who have a heart and a brain surely? The breadth of material blogged about is amazing. Whether you like it or not the blog has revolutionised our lives just as much as the steam engine or the motor car has done. People without a voice can yell into the ether and maybe find an echo somewhere, the lonely can keep contact with humanity, interests can be shared and life, for the most part can be made better for many folk. Who reads all this stuff anyway? Does it really change the world? It changes the world you live in, it changes others world if the respond, and while some may have hundreds, even thousands of readers, the handful that visit most blogs regularly obviously do so because they wish to be there, and want to read you! Now whatever drivel you may write, that must be a good thought to hold on to?


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Thursday, 12 August 2010

Duz tha speak Yowkshire?

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A Yorkshire man takes his cat to the vet.

Yorkshireman: "Ayup, lad, I need to talk to thee about me cat."

Vet: "Is it a tom?"

Yorkshireman: "Nay, I've browt it with us."
...................................................................................

A Yorkshireman's dog dies and as it was a favourite pet he decides to have a gold statue made by a jeweller to remember the dog by.

Yorkshireman: "Can tha mek us a gold statue of yon dog?"

Jeweller: "Do you want it 18 carat?"

Yorkshireman: "No I want it chewin' a bone yer daft bug
 ger!"

................................................................................................
A Yorkshireman's wife dies and the widower decides that her headstone should have the words "She were thine" engraved on it. 

He calls the stone mason, who assures him that the headstone will be ready a few days after the funeral. 
True to his word the stone mason calls the widower to say that the headstone is ready and would he like to come and have a look.

When the widower gets there he takes one look at the stone to see that it's been engraved "She were thin".

He explodes: "'ells bells man, you've left the blood
 y "e" out, you've left the blood y "e" out!"

The stone mason apologises profusely and assures the poor widower that it will be rectified the following morning.

Next day comes and the widower returns to the stone mason: "There you go sir, I've put the "e" on the stone for you".

The widower looks at the stone and then reads out aloud:

"E, she were thin".

................................................................................

Bloke from Barnsley with piles asks chemist "Nah then lad, does tha sell ar
 se cream?"

Chemist replies "Aye, Magnum or Cornetto?"

 
  .
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Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Music, More or Less...

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This morning I awoke just before the alarm and mused at the blue sky outside the window. (Well it would be 'outside' the window, it is hardly likely to be 'inside' is it?) As I pondered the day ahead and asked the questions life throws at us, 'What is it all about?' 'Why me? and 'Why is there always a teaspoon at the bottom of the washing up bowl?' I realised 'Please Release Me' by Tom Jones* was running through my head. I was not pleased. My cogitation changed direction and I once more asked 'Why does a song come to mind soon after waking? and 'Why is it always one I don't want?' Yesterday I was greeted by military band music, the type of stuff played at army displays and ceremonials. In itself this is not bad, but where did it come from? I have not played such music, nor indeed heard it, for a long while, so why is it found in my head at 6:17 in the morning? On occasions I have been assaulted by 'Bucks Fizz,' and before seven O' clock at that! It is a disgrace I say.  It is rarely, if ever, music I wish to hear, so why does it happen like this?


If I could wake to a Beatles tune, Van Morrison or Elgar then it would not be so bad. However I find 'Love Affair' with 'Everlasting Love' a  song detested in 1967, bellowing in my mind unasked and unwanted. Why? How come such obscure and dreadful songs appear in my head when I wake, even if I leave Radio 3 on all night? Where do they come from, and why don't they stay there I ask?


Something in the brain responds to the pace you move at, and I find when wandering through the town music arrives in the cavernous space between my ears according to my pace.  This is how John Lee Hooker made his music, he tapped his feet and from the beat found a song!  This music is linked to the pace I walk at, and the urgency, or lack of it, in my plans, mostly non urgent I can tell you. Now that I can understand, but why when I wake am I confronted with 'Puppy Love' sung by Donny Osmand? Have I been sleeping too slowly perhaps?


Now the thing is my music taste is wide and open, I would happily accept something from the sixties that was worth listening to, classic music of many types could find a home in my head, so why do I get  Abba with 'Waterloo?' Was I dreaming of a railway? That is the song that signified the end of the sixties music movement. From then on all music ended and all that counted was glitz and sham. It has never ceased since. I realise there have been attempts at music, surely 'Punk' does not count, 'Rap' certainly doesn't! But in truth nothing matches the revolutionary aspect of the 'Baby Boomers' generation.  So, with all the music in all the world available to my brain, why is the bland junk thrown at me?


I'm off to find the headphones. Tonight I ensure I listen to a 'Gold' station playing my music, or something near to it. Wouldn't it be just my luck to find it is an 'Abba' anniversary tonight! Doh!!! 


*Yes I realised in time that it was in fact Engelbert Humperdink who sang 'Please Release Me,' and he can be assured that I would indeed have released him at 6:30 this morning if I could, tied to a large bunch of helium balloons!. 


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Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Rain

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My stiff and somewhat aching muscles carried me off to work this morning just as the rain was ending. Once again my thoughts were full of the 'fact' that I live in the 'driest county in England!' It is funny how often I consider this 'fact.' When I was a postman this was a 'fact' that would run through my minds quite often. Because of this I always checked the weather forecast on Anglia TV each night. The personable, pretty, young lassies, would smile as they indicated downpours here, there and everywhere. They still do this today. I recall the lass one evening informing us that there may be "A shower or two" the next day. How right she was. It began just on 6 am and continued, non stop, until just after 12 noon!  This 'shower,' came straight down in large drops without letting up at any time during the day. I wondered at one point if Anglia TV weather girls had invented the 'Driest county in England' phrase when on a 'girls night out' in Norwich one time. Now this was bad enough but as I, and my friend John, stood dripping in the entrance, the manager, coffee cup in hand, giggled like a schoolgirl while we two sodden creatures stood dishevelled before him he suddenly exclaimed "Look! It's stopping, I can go home now!" He was right!  Through the door we could see the end of the thick gray cloud, a following silver lining, and acres of blue sky behind! As we removed our rain garb, saturating everything around, the manager cheerily made his way home accompanied by our good wishes. Today thankfully the rain dispersed, until I had to go outside for another bin, thanks very much, and was kind enough to stay off while I made my weary way home. Two hours work and I am worn out! In days past I would do a 54 hour week regularly, and for poor money at that! Where does all that energy go I wonder? I need it now!

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Monday, 9 August 2010

Work

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So I have got into this work business now. I turn up, spend two hours clearing the mess left by the packers, dump it in the skips provided, and go home. Tomorrow I will do the same once again! Then take the rest of the week off and return for two more days next week. This appears to some like an easy option, but not to one who has been unemployed so long. The mere physical effort of clearing the boxes, flattening them, filling the bins, and walking around all combine to make my bones creak and my muscles ache. There is certainly that wee pain in the knee showing itself, as I suspected it might, but this is something that can be borne for a while yet. The rest of my body needs the routine and physical exertion, that knee can endure a while.


This however is actually good! I am enjoying this as it gives me the impression that I am back in the real world, and is making me fit once again, well up to a point that is. Two hours work on Monday followed by two more on Tuesday is not much, but my ageing unused body has become very slack and this is a good way to exercise the flab. Believe me there is a bit of 'flab' about these days. I also walk around without the guilt feeling that hangs about the unemployable. This is a great relief. I know the 'Daily Express' readers glare as I pass by, although I wonder what they did to get the rewards that they have obtained. Cynical fellow that I am I can imagine the many weird and wonderful ways they have gathered their rewards!  However I am glad of the work, a small step maybe, and now I need another part time, and much more leisurely, job to fill up the bank account and frighten the credit card.


 Funnily enough I feel knackered tonight.

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Sunday, 8 August 2010

Leadership

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The Pakistani Premier wandering about Europe while his nation suffers severe flooding leaves a question about leadership in my mind. The word 'Without a vision the people perish' comes to mind, and leadership is about offering the people that vision. What the Pakistani's thought of their premier is likely to contain no words concerning 'vision,' although it's fair to say most will not know, nor care, who he is most likely. Anyway, their thoughts are on the floods not him, nor his son's future prospects. 


The UK needs leadership at the moment. Economic disaster has left three million unemployed, business's fearful of the future, and mountains of debt many cannot repay. What leadership do we find from the compromise coalition? So far they have paraded their heartlessness in the 'Daily Mail,' the readership of this paper being the 'Middle England' that votes for the Conservative Party, and have claimed Social welfare must be cut. Already the disabled have been suffering, the intention is to make those on 'invalidity benefit' find jobs, and while this ignore the three million already looking for the half million jobs available, and takes no account of employers not wishing to employ such folk, the real reason is to cut the cash given out on benefit. In short a scam to save money! The Tory rag has been telling us that 100,000 are taking benefits worth more than people earn, around £30,000 a year they claim. This information comes from Chris Grayling's department, so the reliability of the numbers is to be doubted. Today the Sunday version claims 250,000 homes where no-one has ever had a job! Quite how these figures add up I fail to understand, but that is typical 'Daily Mail' half truths for you. In short, the Tory leadership in fixing the economy is to attack the welfare state, while offering platitudes, and avoiding any policy that hurts their friends, such as catching tax dodgers for instance. In fact hundreds of tax office folk are being cleared out, what a coincidence! That will save cash, but not in the JSA department!


Leadership must offer a vision for the nation, not just a few. Churchill had his moment in 1940 when his leadership stiffened the nation to 'stand alone' against the Nazi threat, and 'stand alone' it  did! Attlee, in 1945, offered a new world for Britain. Better housing, the NHS, schooling for the kids and a cleaner future for all, and the nation, barring the selfish afraid to lose their advantages, followed on. Most politicians, good and bad, offered some form of leadership, even the dreaded Maggie Thatcher offered leadership, although she killed of the manufacturing world without replacing the jobs! Some folks still suffer from that! Love her or loathe her she did offer leadership, and that is lacking today!


The compromise leadership took its place not to lead, but to get the front seats in the house of Commons. Since then a hotch potch of daft ideas have been thrown out, mostly to cut the economic problem, but all to often these policies are knee jerk party reactions. Not thought out, not considering the results for the nation, simply following Maggies idea that if you don't spend, you save cash. However we must spend to save also, and the only spending appears to be the wives of the politician leaders in the Bond Street shops! The MP's main concern is not their constituents problems, but their expense accounts! I fear for the future. Brown and Blair were not great and encouraged a politically correct approach. Cameron and Clegg appear to encourage a slapdash approach. It is possible that we could achieve ten million unemployed. It may not happen, but who knows what will occur tomorrow? Cameron, who considered 1940 a year when we were the 'junior partner' to the US, (even though the US did not enter the war until late 1941,) and has informed the Turks that the EU should speed up their application process, (thereby upsetting the Greeks, Germans and French), also upset the Pakistani's by demanding they stopped encouraging terrorism, in spite of the thousands who die there from terrorism annually! I fear for our future. Amateurs and imbeciles and self serving people on all sides of the House of Commons are lacking 'vision,' none have any idea of how to handle this crisis. I suggest there is more to come, and I fear there is no vision, and the major world leaders have no answer!


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