Thursday, 31 March 2011



As I crossed the bleak expanse that is Sainsburys car park I discovered yet more music in my head. This was another extension to the sounds that fill the mind as I wake, and that it appears is a phenomenon that we all endure at some time. Maybe we only just notice it in early mornings? I realised that what our friend Dan on his excellent blog has discovered is now called 'Earworm,' is also reflected in the pace at which we live our lives. I realised that rushing through the streets, as I was at lunchtime today, the music that appears in my head is also of quick pace. Sadly today was once again some banal music that probably rose to fame during one of those Eurovision Song Contests, an event I always attempt to avoid. When I saunter along slowly the music corresponds to my snails pace also, although at that speed I can recognise this and attempt to do something about it. Quite who the DJ supplying the music is or where in my massive brain the size of a planet he resides I cannot say. I am reminded by some that Pluto is a planet, what can they mean? 
There is a space in our minds that constantly requires to be filled. If we are concentrating on a subject we do not notice this.  For instance as I write the BBC is playing behind me yet when concentrating on this I do not notice what is being said. However if there was complete silence each time I stopped typing I reckon something, probably a tune, would make itself known soon enough. Usually I have classical music in the background, and I only notice some of it, if voices are heard I miss what is being said until I stop concentrating, if what I do can be called 'concentrating.'  You will have noticed that painters and decorators, builders and other 'artisans' always have a radio to listen to. More than this you will note they always listen to the worst music station on the dial, and naturally the volume is turned up to the highest level, yet they will probably not notice what has just been played if asked!


Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Waking up to a Song in the Head


I do this often. The thing that bugs me is that I do not wake up to Barber's 'Adagio,' or Van Morrison, oh no I wake up to Buck's Fizz or some other meaningless bubblegum music. Why is this? I am sure that some neurologist or neuroscientist out there may have an idea but they appear not to have let me know about this.  As I was burning my porridge in the micro wave this morning I realised I had a tune, if you can call it that, in my head. Not only did I have a tune I had only one line of said work going around and around. Not only this but now I cannot remember what this line was, but it was an irritant at the time! This is one of life's mysteries that happens daily to me. My alarm plays Gregorian Chant to bring me into the world, although the brighter morning mean I am already awake and attempting to open my eyes. As I clear the nights fug by opening the window and letting the early morning mist chill my bones, I really ought to hide them better, I then realise a song, line, tune, is in my head. It is not I need not inform you Gregorian Chant, indeed it rarely is anything of any quality whatsoever, it is always something from the realms of 'pap' that in normal times I would ignore. On top of this it also originates way back in the past when the world was young and life was for living. You remember those days don't you? The time when everything was exciting and the deep desire was to go around the next corner, to follow that railway track into the far distance and to drink deeply of the joy that was in waiting out there! It seems a long time ago now doesn't it? It must have affected my mind as when I wander the streets looking for dropped coins and runaway vegetables I find the music that comes to my mid at that time also originates in times past. Cream often sing 'Sunshine of your love' as I walk past Tesco's. On other occasions Deep Purple have accompanied my perambulation, frightening children and old ladies as I inadvertently head bang as I totter along. Never does the music of later years interfere. I suspect that this is because what is broadcast on music stations means little to me now, my era was the 60's and now the music I listen too dates from that time or is more classical in nature. The reason my waking mind can recall appropriate music is because I am almost awake as I stroll, but that does not explain why my dulled early morning mind digs deep into my head to produce 'Buck's Fizz!' 


Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Libyan farce


It is bad enough that no one knows the actual reasons for the West choosing to attack Libya, although the oil is reason number one and two leaders (Cameron & Sarkozy) are desperate to be seen as willing to take decisive action and be considered 'strong' is number two, but the outcome remains clearly unpredictable. This farce continued yesterday when the 'allies' knocked out the tanks and heavy equipment they had spent years selling for a fat profit to Gaddafi and allowed the 'mish-mash' that is the rebel 'army' to advance. This 'army' claimed a victory in taking Sirtie when in fact they had not even reached the place! An ambush by a few regulars in Gaddafi's forces machine gunned this 'army' as they headed towards them in their ageing vehicles and they ran away! Clearly there is no leadership, no organisation, no training and even control in the rebel ranks. Yet NATO is now offering them full support in an attempt, they say, to 'save civilian life.' If these rebels get themselves into Sirtie what will be the result? This is Gaddafi's home town. These are his people. The likely hood is that the people will fight for him and how much 'civilian life' will be lost here? Will the 'allies' put troops in on the ground? They can do little from the air once the battle occurs in built up areas. The question is where will these troops come from? Most nations do not wish to be involved, and Obama has clearly stated he will not send his, the UK is over stretched already and few capable armies are left.  The chances of marching this motley rebel army to Tripoli is frightening. If the smaller town fight back what will occur at the centre of the regime?

This whole operation is covered in lies. Syria is much more repressive yet nothing is done there outside of diplomatic discussions. Syria is too dangerous to touch. That is why a Libyan was blamed for the Lockerbie killings. He was set up through an agreement between the major powers as attacking Syria, then hiding the PFLP who were responsible, would have upset the whole region. Iran certainly lay behind the end of Pan-Am 103, and a Scots village suffered the consequences of Captain Rogers 'John Wayne' approach, but it was impossible to touch anyone but Gaddafi! When Syria is troubled then so is Lebanon, this unsettles Israel and Iran hovers in the wing in menacing fashion. So Syria is ignored and the easy target, Gaddafi, picked on once again. We could ask why is Bahrain is receiving no mention these days, too much money there perhaps, to many connections to powerful people in the UK possibly. The Saudi's, who buy so many of our weapons,  itch to attack their rebels, mostly Shia, will we object if they do? I doubt it.

On top of this the UK governments idiotic monetary policy is shown to heighten the farce element today.Ignoring the hundreds of thousands taking part in a peaceful protest meeting at the weekend objecting to the huge cuts in government spending and the dreadful consequences of this ham fisted policy, not only are experienced front line police officers being forced to retire because of the 20% cut in police money means we can no longer afford them, not only are serious crimes not leading to jail sentences as this 'costs too much,'  but we know discover we do not have enough pilots to fly the missions into Libya! Incredible! We have dumped the Harrier Jump Jets, are selling of the aircraft carriers (while building a new one that will not be ready for years and has no planes to fit it when complete), cutting the numbers of our overworked troops and now have run out of trained pilots! There are insufficient pilots being trained today so that when the experienced men reach the end of their careers we will have insufficient numbers to replace them! We are embarking on conflicts with insufficient cash, we are running out of men, and we have no idea why we are there! I remind the world that this is an unelected government we have here in the UK today! Now British forces have since Boudica attacked the Romans at Camulodunum been insufficiently supplied with men and material so this ought not to surprise anyone. However I suspect that by the time the recruits are trained to fly our lovely new 'Typhoon fighters' we will only have half a dozen left to fly anyway. I also suspect these will be used 24 hours a day to get our moneys worth from them. 
Today a conference of interested parties, not counting Gaddafi obviously as he is not interested, will take place in London. While spouting that they do not wish regime change, and conscious of the mess left after the Iraq disaster the suggestion that Gaddafi gets a way out by being 'exiled somewhere far away (with lots of his nations money I suppose) is on the table. While stuffing themselves with the expensive nosh that is also on the table and quaffing champagne the hoi poloi of forty nations will endeavour to fix the Libyan situation in a manner that suits them happily. Whether for the sake of 'democracy,' to 'save lives,' and to benefit the Libyan people I am not sure, especially as the 'people' have not been asked what they want. Let us face it, they have no idea what they want either! This rebellion fed on the situation in Tunisia on one side and Egypt on the other. It has no heart, no leadership and little idea what they are hoping for. Cameron and Sarkozy, backed by the US and others, have jumped on the bandwagon to remove Gaddafi and ensure stability in the production of oil. This will also ensure, they hope, and end to people trafficking from sub-Saharan Africa. Whether it does is as yet unknown, indeed far too much is as yet unknown here. The worrying thing is that while our leaders do not understand the situation nor where it might lead they press on regardless and it is others who will bear the cost in the long run, not they!


Friday, 25 March 2011

Spring has Sprung!


Yesterday I shook of the Man Flu, laid aside the pile of sympathy cards (yes that was satire) and found the energy to wander outside in the sunshine. How lovely it is to walk around with a blue sky above, bright, sweet smelling newly cut grass underfoot, bright sunshine all around, blackbirds singing in the trees and daffodils swaying in the breeze. Marvellous, especially after rarely leaving the house for two weeks, to wander in warm air and espy pretty young girls exposing themselves to the world, or at least the young men who they were throwing themselves at. Nothing speaks of Spring more than women's desire to let the world see their attractive bits.  I do find however that in the late afternoon the girls look to me like, well girls!  Not 'women' as such, just kids dressed as women! How age kicks you in the teeth! The young males also disrobe in a vain attempt to persuade the lassies that they are strong. They pose on the skatepark opposite attempting to impress as they throw themselves around the obstacles with the girls watching on. The lucky ones end up in the bushes round about. It must be said here that this area has the highest teen pregnancy rate in England. The number of stupid 15 years old amazes me!  It also disappoints that they did not exist when I was at school! 
There is however a word of warning for all these sun worshippers, it's still chilly! The fact that the sun shines does not imply warmth and in the shade it can be bitter early on. Still that does not top folks calling this 'fresh' and wandering about in shorts and sunglasses as if they were already on holiday on the Spanish coast.  

Looking at old photographs gives us the comparison of fashion. In days of yore people dressed well when out and about. The men in three piece suits, watch chains showing, women with frilly hats and elegant outfits. Until the sixties folk used to be careful about how neatly they dressed in public. Sadly this is not the case in our liberal world today. It is right that people should dress as they please, it is sad that so many just look a mess, and often an expensive mess at that! The scruffy T-shirt with funny slogan and the torn jeans are displayed because they have a certain name on them and they cost a fortune! This in spite of the recession! Some, especially women and young folks, require to keep up with the fashion of the day. I am glad that I am just dressed as myself, even though people hold their nose as I pass. Mind you there are worse. Fat people wearing this clothes, sometimes trendy gear in an attempt to keep up with the rest, do not make for good viewing. Many wear to the shops outfits that are suitable for the house and garden but not for public viewing. How come we have lost that sense of discretion I wonder? Where did it go?

I enjoyed carrying my cough into the free world. I enjoyed the sights and sounds which have returned today to bless us all. I was so happy to be out yesterday that this morning I ventured early into two supermarkets to grumble about the rip off prices. Later, after catching up on all those jobs left lying, I will once again say hello to 'Brother sun,' and speak kindly to 'Sister sky.' I may end up in a 'special place I suppose, but at least I will be happy.


Tuesday, 22 March 2011

'Pine Top' Perkins


'Pine Top' Perkins the Blues magician has died aged 97. You may be surprised at this as you had never heard of him until now, well neither had I, however this is my type of music so he needs to be listened to! The States must have been awash with black musicians for many years before the young British bands like the Beatles and Rolling Stones gave them the publicity they so richly deserved. I think it was when questioned on the Johnny Carson show about their musical influences that the racist attitudes of America really showed up. John and Paul mentioned the likes of Howling Wolf, John Lee Hooker and so on yet Johnny had no idea who they were. Black music was not considered acceptable then. However white guys like Bob Zimmerman up in Duluth was using the magic of radio to bring about a radical transformation in both the United States and the western world in general. Taking the name Dylan, after Dylan Thomas the famous Welsh drunk, his music joined with others in transforming society for the better. How interesting that a music ignored by so many, indeed considered dangerous in many ways because of who performed it, was to influence so much change in the USA. Certainly they had been warned in the fifties of this music. Rock and Roll also grew from black influence and gave Elvis his fame, and at first abuse from those who knew best. But it was the men of the sixties who really brought such music to the worlds attention. How glad I am about that. Men like 'Pinetop' supported many famous names over the years, most much more famous than their backing bands, and even today there are men like him still playing their music in their nineties. Good luck to them!


Monday, 21 March 2011



I have just finished filling in the census online. Now I often read folk complaining about the census, their complaint appearing to be that it implies an infringement of the 'liberty' and an imposition into their 'freedom' in some way. I often wondered why this would be as it appears rational in my mind for a government to wish to know who exactly is living within the borders. I have no complaints about this and fail to see why others ought to complain. I do however object to 'civil partnerships' being regarded alongside marriage, and found myself wondering about the 'Who will be there on Sunday night with you' question. Who on earth would wish to be here with me? Not counting the 'Masochist Maidens Group' obviously, but we will not go into that! Questions regarding who is in the house on a given date appear normal census stuff to me. Indeed it can be seen by some as an intrusion, however it is always possible to ignore a question that is too nosey or just put down a lie. 

However I did find myself a bit irked at being questioned about my life in this small way. It does indeed appear an intrusion although it falls far short of an imaginary 'Big Bother' ideal. There is a thin line between 'freedom' to live your own way and the needs of the society around us. Today especially the 'spirit of the air' encourages people in the west to demand their right to be an individual. This encourages selfishness and cutting people off from others leads only to a breakdown of society and a more uncaring world at all levels. This is seen around us today, based on 'individual liberty' but in the end leaving us with only ourselves and nothing else. I do not see that as good. 'Liberalism' appears to offer 'freedom' to be yourself but in the end just allows us to put our needs before another's, and then we can justify our 'self.' It is actually in putting others first that we become more 'our self,' although this is not easy as the 'self,' that centre of our being, dies hard!

It is amazing how we can object to an intrusion by the census but rarely consider the information a supermarket has on us. All our shopping trends for years past can be located on their servers, many government departments keep records of our contact with them, individual organisations also have info stored away, all secure, we are told, under the Data Protection Act and other relevant legislation. Only you know how much information the police have on you, I couldn't possibly comment. Should we worry about this? I am not to worried at the moment, however we can so easily be taken over by a draconian government and all this information would soon fall into their hands. Ten years can see many major political changes, who knows what the situation will be ten, twenty or thirty years hence?  I must be more careful next time I buy mince!

Many who do object to such population investigation satisfy their objections by inserting daft answers, such as 'Jedi' for religion therefore making this one of the nations fastest growing religions! It speaks much about such people that they wish to join a people who can build spacecraft the size of a planet but fight with swords rather than guns!  While the census will give an overall impression of the nation it cannot include those who willingly avoid it, illegal immigrants (10 million according to some at the 'Daily Mail.') criminals on the run (3 million according to the 'Daily Mail.'), legal immigrants who believe this will be used against them and have them classed as 'dangerous, (five get the picture...) and anyone too stupid to fill the thing in properly. We all know someone like that! What you looking at me for?  Anyway I have done mine so that those looking into their history in one hundred years time can find information about me and my life. Good luck to them I say!


Sunday, 20 March 2011



I realised today that yesterday was post number one thousand! Well, well, well! What a surprise! To think I have posted that much surprised me. A bigger surprise is that people read this stuff! It must be said most do not return although people who meet me in the flesh usually don't return either. However I have enjoyed learning to write, although grammar is something that can wait, and having a place to spout my ignorance is always welcome! The best part is not my writing but the people who have dropped in! I now have cyber friends in many parts of the world. A wide variety of opinions, beliefs, classes, types and good people all I must say. Each and every one has made my life that bit better, educated me more, made me feel humble at their talents and good hearts, and revealed to me how good much of this world actually is! Well done to you all. Oh and I may have another thousand soon, what with this wedding, the Olympics, benefit scrounging and Dave Cameron. In fact I suspect I may reach 2000 by July!  

Love & kisses.


Saturday, 19 March 2011


Or is it broken spellchecker perhaps.....?

That one comes from this site with many more! Jack Frost.


Friday, 18 March 2011

Let Me Get This Straight 'Dave.'


'Dave,' you have been in the forefront of the desire of some leaders to impose an 'No Fly' zone over Libya, because you say people are being killed by Gaddafi. Now there are those who would agree this may indeed be a good thing. Gaddafi is clearly mental, but sly as a fox, and many have wished to remove him before. However while he may well abuse, torture, kill and maim his own people it must be said that in the Middle East this is quite normal procedure. I will of course not mention that camp the Yanks have in Cuba in case it causes embarrassment to you and any others. However I will ask why we are selling off the Harrier jump jets    and HMS Ark Royal from which they flew, and then spending horrendous amounts of money we don't have just to make you appear 'tough' in the world's eyes. Are you still living out that 'Tony Blair' fantasy by any chance? 

Whether keeping Gaddafi's aircraft on the ground will make any difference for his rebellious population will soon be shown. Although reports have indicated few are actually hurt by air attack. What does matter is that in Bahrain, a friend of the UK and the west in general, people are being brutalised by their Sheik and you appear to be turning a blind eye. Are you working on the 'Tony Blair principle' again? If they are our friends we ignore their undemocratic tortures and thuggish treatment of their population, as long as they give us the oil and help us when required, but will loudly condemn Gaddafi,and anyone else with oil, who may turn against us at any time? Can I just mention that the Ivory Coast has seen many killed in recent days, but they have no oil. The Sudanese situation may lead to war, Darfur is being ignored, and the Democratic Congo still has problems. Will you be commenting on any of these while one of the thousand pound suits you wear are at the dry cleaners?  Just asking like.


Thursday, 17 March 2011



Naturally I have had little sympathy during my 'Man Flu' experience. Although I found this site very helpful with that :- Man Flu   Only today I was forced, against my better wishes, to visit the dole office and pretend I was seeking work. Sympathy extended to such things as being told to "Breathe in the other direction," and "Don't e-mail me, I might catch a virus." A resounding "Bye" and a waving of papers in my direction ended my short visit. Good job I am not one to complain. 

The answer to unemployment is to start your own business. Great idea, but when this is put forward people tend to forget to mention how many such starter jobs fail within three years, if indeed they last that long. The answer is for bigger companies to be encouraged to employ folk. There appears to be nothing around that will let that happen. Two and a half million unemployed yet no jobs being created, bar short term ones in the east end for the Olympics in 2012.  Are you as excited as I about these games? I am as excited as Matt in the Daily Telegraph!  


Monday, 14 March 2011



I'm dying! The world means nothing to me now. I am wretched, aching and suffering. No words of sympathy can alleviate my distress, not that any come my way, no encouragement can be found while I lie helpless under the strain. All is lost, all is worthless, nothing matters. Nothing except another toilet roll and packet of Sainsbury's Ibuprofen and dozens of cups of steaming hot liquids that is! Why oh why did I not buy that whisky for the toddy I ask myself repeatedly. Why oh why do I always get these things? Why me? What have I done to deserve this? Well actually we will miss out that last question as there are numerous replies and I would prefer to avoid all of them, time is too short for them all anyway. Oh the suffering, oh the pain, oh the agony and distress!

What is the point of a cold virus? Why were they created? Just what part do they play in the universe? Jesus did not sit up one day and think, "I know, just for a laugh I will invent a virus that causes sniffles, headaches, muscle aches, dissipates the brain, wearies the legs and leads to no sympathy from those free from it whatsoever!" (Sympathy that those who then suffer this debilitating illness then demand!) Just what is the point of it? Why do virii of any sort exist to cause illness? These are complicated little mechanisms, the 'Trojan Horses' of the real world. I was thinking on this and wonder what they were intended for when I thought "Fly's," those little beasts that appear in warm weather and fill the house, find their way into the kitchen and are impossible to swat because of their incredible eyes. Why were they created? Fantastic vision but no other purpose apart from breeding a million a week and being a pest!

Oh the suffering, not helped by unanswered questions. Oh the pain, oh dearie me. Although I must say that I have found it difficult to really allow myself to make my suffering known when I read of small Japanese towns of some 17,000 people being inundated by the tsunami and now around 10,000 are missing! Watching peoples fishing boats make their way down the High Street does make a cold appear less important. Japan is well aware of the dangers of earthquakes, well prepared, and rich enough to deal with most events. However watching the pictures it is clear that they nation has been stunned! Where do you begin? Especially as a nuclear power station is in danger of a second Chernobyl? How do you find survivors, as if any will be found? How do you clear up the mess, especially when so many trained people have been lost in the aftermath? How do you deal with such a situation?  There are advantages to living in cold, damp Britain after all.

Understanding Colds


Friday, 11 March 2011

Spammers eh!


The intelligence of spammers really amazes me. Some will send you e-mails claiming to be your bank asking politely if you would please remind them of your details. A dozen years ago, when new to all of this, I nearly fell for one such e-mail from AOL. It was a perfect copy of the real thing but I managed, just, to avoid falling for it. Others write pleading letters from Nigeria or Kenya asking help to get $24,000,000 dollars out of the country. "Can we please use your bank for this?" they ask politely. Much as I was tempted I avoided this also, others however have appeared on telly whining about the £20,000 taken from their bank accounts by Prince Adebede and his mates. The fact that they were willing to rob another country just to land a million or so leaves me lacking sympathy for them. Do they really believe a politician needs to ask help to get money out of Africa? That has been a well practised art for many years there. Of course politicians in the UK would never do such a thing, they are all honest, upright, and do not have their fingers in the pie. No they don't, really they don't, no they don't, honest. 

Today however this arrived and I had to laugh! This type of false info often appears, usually from companies that do not operate in the UK. This one claims to be from DHL, which obviously it isn't. They never deliver to the likes of me, not even Royal Mail deliver packets these days, just letters from the bank demanding money, and I call that spamming too! However when I previewed the thing using Mailwasher, and I recommend folks use some such device, I had  to laugh at the inefficiency of these master criminals.

Dear customer.

The parcel was send your home address.

And it will arrice within 7 bussness day.

More information and the tracking number

are attached in document below.

Thank you.

 2011 DHL International GmbH. All rights reserverd.

Now my spelling is greatly improved by using the spellchecker. The criminal classes of Russia,  China or Albania or wherever however really must be so hard up they cannot afford to buy a free spellchecker! I am not convinced such persons are fit to represent the criminal classes of today. In times past people wearing arrow covered uniforms were much better educated than this. I blame the schools! (I will not mention that I misspelt 'educated') This one may well come from the Russian Federation and if it arrives you will of course be clever enough not to open it, that way leads to a Trojan. I say 'Trojan' but Ivan may well spell that 'tragen' depending on his accent!



The Hoax Slayer report!


Thursday, 10 March 2011



Life is so busy these days. I was considering penning (how does one 'pen' on a keyboard I wonder?) something of interest and importance to the world tonight. Unfortunately I discovered European Football is on the telly at six of the clock and I have not got the intellect time to write. Thus you will miss out on my words of wisdom as I will probably have allowed my invaluable utterance to fade from my twisted and perverse mind by tomorrow. So I am off to stuff my fat face, take a substantial amount of liver salts afterwards, and then sit uncomfortably watching first Liverpool and then Manchester City in what promises to be several long hours of anti-climax. That I can assure you is something we Scots are quite used to on the football field.


Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Suffragettes Terrorists

Suffragette Terrorist Impounded 

Today is 'International Women's Day!' Yet for the life of me I cannot remember an 'International Men's Day?' If I were to sue under the 'Equalities Legislation' would the liberal judges of today allow me to win? We don't have a 'Minister for Men' so why do we require one for women?  'Glass ceilings' appear everywhere holding back women from reaching the top in the workplace, so what is it that stops men reaching the top? Class, age, colour, sexism perhaps? I sometimes wish I was female so I could whine when things go against me. However as a white male, over 50 I can't get away with that. Women (we are not allowed to call them ladies these days) can use their bodies to get jobs, especially in the media, in the entertainment world and we have all come across this in the workplace, yet this appears to be acceptable. I've tried wearing nice perfume and earnings and crossing my legs provocatively but found it did not get me promotion. All I got from that bus garage was thrown on a Number 189 and told, in a somewhat brusque manner to remove myself. Where did I go wrong?

How about just treating people right whoever they are? Would this be a good idea? Maybe not hiding your incompetence behind your sex or age or class would be good?  Maybe these would be a good idea but human nature being what it is we will always face discrimination for one reason or another. That I am afraid is just life! It will always be there and law making will never erode this. Being over 50 (yet still thinking I am 18) I cannot get work, and banning ageism does not help, in fact it makes things worse! Like others I am forced to apply for unsuitable jobs simply because they are not allowed to demand a certain age group. How daft is this? This wastes my time and money and that of potential employers. Those women who get to the very top tend to do so because of talent, not their sex (I obviously don't mean parliament here). Those who fail to make it can always blame a man somewhere and sell their story to a women's magazine.

By the way suffragettes were indeed terrorists. The 'National Union of Women's Suffrage' began by Millicent Fawcet was a peaceful organisation. Impatient with the lack of movement Pankhurst and her followers began a violent demand for the vote. Chaining themselves to railings, disrupting meetings, smashing windows, burning down churches and stupidly throwing themselves under the Kings racehorse were supposed to show that women were intelligent enough to vote! Hmmm I think myself I know one or two that ought to be chained to railings today!


Monday, 7 March 2011



Foolishly I was enticed by the yellow sunshine brightening the green of the grass outside my window, the clear blue sky high above and climbed onto the trusty old bike this morning. Hastening out along the short pavement I turned into the side road and rode at speed straight into a police car leaving the station to begin the mid morning patrol! Well I avoided him of course but he seemed peeved for some reason leaving me similarly peeved that  he glared at me in that special manner a policeman always seem able to sum up. Therefore I hastened on my way before he could consider opening his mouth!
'Hastened' is the word! The bike and my knees worked well today. For some reason all was going well as I headed up the slopes of the old railway at high speed, except when avoiding dog walkers obviously! These had also been drawn out by the sun and there is nothing more delightful to a dog than the many varieties of experience available along this walk. Unfit and unspeakable as I am I had intended to struggle up to the village and make my weary way home. Surprisingly I kept going and cycled round the country lanes to the bigger village further on. Even more surprising was the lack of 'white van man' speeding along this route today. The sight of early crops coming through, crows sauntering about the fields confident in their strength, robins singing brightly for a mate, anybody's mate, in the branches, and the sun filled sky kept me going. The change of scenery, the bright sun and the assortments of colours as Spring begins to spring lightened the heart and made passers-by offer cheery 'hello's' to all who pass. Brightly painted ageing houses, some which have stood their ground for several hundred years, made for interesting viewing. The farms I passed can be found on old maps still with their present name. I wonder how long some of these farms have existed? Since the forests that one covered this area  were cleared this land has been farmland. People have come and gone, fortunes have ebbed and flowed, centuries have passed and the general nature has remained the same. Plague and witch hunts, civil war and changeable governments have risen and fallen and these trees, bushes and the wildlife have continued on their own way following the seasons. 
Since the middle of the 19th century we have mostly been town dwellers in the west. Contact with the land has been lost, unless we are granted a bit of garden to grow our own veg. Allotments, that British area of garden leased from the council, have become more and more desired as time passes. People wish them partly to enable a ready supply of vegetables but also to get in touch with the land, something supermarkets cannot give, and indeed who's prices are an encouragement to such 'self help.      
I suppose it's getting on for five miles or so outwards and when my knees realised how far they had gone they began to rebel! In their opinion my arms were not pulling enough and my arms were more than willing to contest this thought. Hurtling through Bannister Green at six miles an hour, good job that slope was there, I decided it was time to return home by the railway bed. Here I found that not only the chilled wind was against me but at this point the the line began to rise slightly. Typical! This slope was not noticed by those blackened steam engines pulling the local service slowly along but it was clear enough to both my arms and my knees. They commented on this in a manner a bit too full and frank for my liking to be honest.  
I do not worry about aching limbs in the morning however, these have arrived already! I sit aching and totally knackered, merely happy the heart attack did not arrive while on the road home! Too think that once I rode, over several days, from Edinburgh to London and now I struggle after a few miles! There is no doubt that I am unfit but if the weather keeps up I will be out a few more times in days to come. Now where is that ambulance.......


Friday, 4 March 2011

A Blonde goes to Heaven

Entrance Exam
A Blonde goes to Heaven 

A Blonde (called Dorothy) was sent on her way to Heaven. Upon arrival, a concerned St Peter met her at the Pearly Gates. 'I'm sorry,' 
St Peter said; 'But Heaven is suffering from an overload of godly souls and we have been forced to put up an Entrance Exam for new arrivals to ease the burden of Heavenly Arrivals.' 

'That's cool' said the Blonde (called Dorothy) , 'What does the
Entrance Exam consist of?'

'Just three questions' said St Peter.

'Which are?' asked the Blonde.

'The first,' said St Peter, 'is, which two days of the week start with the letter 'T' '? The second is 'How many seconds are there in a year?'

The third is 'What was the name of the swagman in Waltzing Matilda?'

'Now,' said St Peter, 'Go away and think about those questions and when I call upon you, I shall expect you to have those answers for me.'

So the Blonde (called Dorothy) went away and gave those three questions some considerable thought (I expect you to do the same).

The following morning, St Peter called upon the Blonde and asked if she had considered the questions, to which she replied, 'I have.'

'Well then,' said St Peter, 'Which two days of the week start with the letter T?'

The Blonde (called Dorothy) said, 'Today and Tomorrow.'

St Peter pondered this answer for some time, and decided that indeed the answer can be applied to the question.

'Well then, could I have your answer to the second of the three
questions?' St Peter went on, 'how many seconds in a year?'

The Blonde (called Dorothy) replied, 'Twelve!'

'Only twelve?' exclaimed St Peter, 'How did you arrive at that figure?'

'Easy,' said the Blonde (called Dorothy) , 'there's the second of
January, the second of February, right through to the second of
December, giving a total of twelve seconds.'

St Peter looked at the Blonde (called Dorothy) and said, 'I need some time to consider your answer before I can give you a decision.' And he walked away shaking his head.

A short time later, St Peter returned to the Blonde (called Dorothy) . 'I'll allow the answer to stand, but you need to get the third and final question absolutely correct to be allowed into Heaven. Now, can you tell me the answer to the name of the swagman in Waltzing Matilda?'

The blonde (called Dorothy) replied: 'Of the three questions, I found this the easiest to answer.'

'Really!' exclaimed St Peter, 'And what is the answer?'

'It's Andy.'


'Yes, Andy,' said the Blonde (called Dorothy) .

This totally floored St Peter, and he paced this way and that,
deliberating the answer. Finally, he could not stand the suspense any longer, and turning to the blonde, asked 'How in God's name did you arrive at THAT answer?'

'Easy' said the Blonde (called Dorothy) , 'Andy sat, Andy watched, Andy waited till his billy boiled.'

And the Blonde (called Dorothy) entered Heaven...

.... you're singing it now, aren't you?? 



Thursday, 3 March 2011


The other day I managed to find some snowdrops wearily waiting the sun breaking through the gray clouds above. One day it will succeed! The gardens had plenty of buds beginning to open, birds singing and green shoots breaking through the soil in various places. Altogether the hope that springs in Spring was beginning to be seen everywhere. There is no doubt this is the best time of the year. Winter over, summer ahead, albeit with the occasion blizzard, famine and earthquake here and there, but nonetheless the world looks brighter today than it did last week!

Once again I await the letter from the bank. Oh yes, two Direct Debits have not been paid!  Why? I am convinced there was enough money on Friday, how come I am now awaiting  a £20 charge? Now I am not one to complain but I am afraid that when I dropped a note regarding the payment of these DD's, tied to a brick and lobbed through the main window, I may say that my words were somewhat curt! I did not refer to the millions paid out in 'bonus's,' nor did I mention that this bank is mostly owned by the nation and owes 'US' millions, but I might just have made mention of 'robbers,' 'bandits,' 'thieves,' 'highwaymen' and possibly I then said something rude! I expect they will cry into their safes when they read it, and sweep all that glass away.


Wednesday, 2 March 2011



About a dozen years ago a pretty young lass and I wandered around the historical, but by now somewhat grubby port of Harwich. It was possible to tell just how busy this small place had once been by the abundance of public houses! Entertainment was at hand for the Jack Tars of yesteryear. Today however, (and by today I mean yesterday as twelve years ago cannot by any stretch of the imagination be called today can it?) today tourists and some seeking a ferry to somewhere in Europe are more likely to be found than bearded submariners blinking in the unused to daylight. Quite whether the 'unused to' bit is caused by being stuck inside a 'tin fish' or spending too long inside 'The British Flag' I am not sure. Anyway while perusing the sights, such as they are, we came across a small 'art gallery.' We went in, as you do, and observed the offerings. Two ageing poky rooms had been turned into a place to exhibit paintings. We looked, we pondered, we cogitated, that sort of thing is allowed in such gallery's. We perused the offerings, mumbled, hummed and thought "Jings!" Most exhibits were influenced by the sea. Some made us look twice, several made us look away. What made us open mouthed however was the small tickets revealing the prices found on one of the corners of each 'work.'  One that remains in my memory, possibly for ever, was a four foot by four foot (translate into metric for yourself) bright blue array with splashes of white strategically places to resemble boats at sea. Now I give you that to some extent this worked! This clearly was an attempt to portray yachts out on the briny. There is no doubt we both caught this right away and were impressed! We loitered, (no, not like that) we gazed, we almost admired. However we might have been admiring the cheek as opposed to the art as our open mouths were caused by the price tag of £994 that sat in the top right hand corner! Quite how the figure was deduced I know not! She looked at me and grabbed both my arms to stop me racing for the door and heading to the painting and decorating shop around the corner. My eyes filled with pound signs and hers with tears as she reminded me that 'Honesty is the best policy.' In truth it would not have been honest to charge such a price for something that must have taken half an hour to produce - artistically! Even the art displayed along the railings in Bayswater Road in London once a week did not overcharge to that extent. Well, I don't know mind, thinking back I may well be wrong there. Their customers mostly came from foreign tourists or folks too rich to understand the meaning of money, so maybe I just did not enquire of the right people.

Now 'art' is good. There is a great need for it. However it is such an open market that any rubbish can be called art, the Turner prize proves this. Vast sums are paid for rubbish because of two things, stupid people who consider themselves art experts (I cannot spell connoisseurs!) and clever people who know a rich mug when they see one! Hence a sheep in chemical is art, as is an unmade bed! Even worse are those who prattle nonsense about the 'art' in front of them, partly because they 'believe' in it and partly because that is the type of people they mingle with, and therefore must speak their language. Pretentious codswallop! This is indeed a sad world in so many ways! 

But 'art' is necessary! We need it to brighten our homes, our workplaces, our lives. It can be found all around us and we feel better when we participate, whether by drawing a picture for the kids, painting the house or attempting a water colour. Art can also be musical, which many can perform in one form or another, (ABBA does NOT count as music!, writing, poetry, much ignored today, and for some, dance the most impenetrable of art form! Vast differences appear in all these 'arts.'  High and low brow offer something to us all but maybe 'The X-Factor' could be classed as an exception there? However spare me things that spoil the natural world, there is more than sufficient 'art' to be found there. No artist of today can compete with a flower as art once it has bloomed, so why spoil such surroundings with plastic and bent metal? Only the art snob could like this. Ah the art snob! They like to be seen, they have the cash, they usually don't actually work, so artists can live of such folk for many years, and I suspect this will always be the case.

Councillors for reasons that I have never understood like to have 'art' in their towns. Harlow (the 'T' is silent) now proclaims itself a 'Sculpture Town,' having laid out, at great expense, a 'sculpture tour. Those who have visited this 'New Town' created in 1951 reckon that the Luftwaffe would be better brought out of retirement to benefit the townsfolk than this! A friend who serves as a police officer there may well remark about money spent on 'art' when CCTV would be a better idea! Councillors throughout the nation are always buying junk and placing it in towns and cities in spite of the populations condemnation of such activities. The resident does not count it appears. 

Art, in spite of what the experts tell us, does indeed come down to what we like, or appreciate. What is junk today will be popular tomorrow. What was forced on a people once, Hitler's views on art for instance, will be hated for idealogical reasons while Communist art is often praised, although these two men had much in common. Taste moves with the fashion, and fashion is often wrong! I write this because of what I saw the other day, 'junk' praised as art by the middle class trendies. The type of person who think Gormley's absurd men standing in the Pool at Liverpool is 'telling!' In fact it tells us he knows a mug when he sees one, his reputation is advanced as indeed is his bank account. Sadly passing fashion makes one rich and another poor, although who has real talent is often hard to tell. 

I like lots of art, and prefer not to mix with those who 'know.' Ignorance allows me to enjoy all sorts of rubbish, but costs me nothing! I like this.....


I came across this forum today and while I have not read all the posts I have looked at the pictures. I think they back up what I am trying to say here.