Wednesday, December 30, 2009

the wet aftermath

Back at work again today - and it is very quiet. Was too afraid to check the toilets today - and now i'm hanging on till i get home.

Did my tax return today looks like i'm paying about 180 odd squid in tax this year - from the rented property - which is not too bad. I hadn't realised I'd made any profit from it - none of it ends up going my way - even though I do end up paying tax on it. something wrong there.

More fuckwitted comments from Independent on-line

I didn't know whether to laugh or cry when I read these, found under an article about a chinese author suing Google over books scanned onto its on-line library.

Comments

( Leave a comment )

i would have thought the human rights abuses in china would be more important than sueing google!!!

maradona_2009 wrote:

Tuesday, 29 December 2009 at 06:47 pm (UTC)

good grief what is it with some of these chines people trying to make a fast buck when there are human rights abuses takeing place in china!

Link Reply Thread

Re: i would have thought the human rights abuses in china would be more important than sueing google

vassily_shuisky wrote:

Wednesday, 30 December 2009 at 07:09 am (UTC)

Then you're a hypocritical Little England moron, aren't you???

http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/chinese-novelist-sues-google-for-scanning-books-1852661.html

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Xmas poo

OK - I don;t know why I'm so surprised - but only the first day back after Xmas and the toilets at work are all blocked - that's three seperate toilets on my floor - all blocked with poo. I''ve been here since mid January and not even one toilet has been blocked before.

I'm thinking of bringing in a bucket with me tomorrow.



This poo is made of plastic, and I found it in the NEMO museum in Amsterdam. It looks very much like the sort of poo that I imagine blocked our toilets at work.

The Embittered losers who post at the end of online newspaper articles

Take the ones that posted under this story:
Bipolar sufferers 'lose touch with reality'By Beverley Rouse, Press Association
Tuesday, 29 December 2009
http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/bipolar-sufferers-lose-touch-with-reality-1852329.html

kw9751 wrote:
Strange how he didn't have a diagnosed history of bipolar disorder before he got the death penalty [strange I wasn’t diagonosed as being autistic until I was in my late 30s – what was I trying to hide? My wife is almost certainly bi-polar, but has never ben formally diagnosed.What is she trying to hide?]
Even stranger how he sat on the Chinese death row since Nov 2008 and noone made a fuss until days before his execution. Where were Brown and Co then? Where were Reprieve? Busy manufacturing a history of mental disorder?
People can be diagnosed after sentence!
kerrygold wrote:
Tuesday, 29 December 2009 at 03:26 pm (UTC)
Gary Mc Kinnons Aspergers was only discovered after he was about to bo extradited. So it can happen.
He wasn't from "Kentish Town", he was from POLAND
[Kentish Town in quotes – why?]

vassily_shuisky wrote:
Tuesday, 29 December 2009 at 11:24 am (UTC)
And no doctor ever carried out any tests on him to say he was bi-polar.
This is something made up by his desperate lawyers [people posting on the internet just say whatever comes into their heads].
What was he living on after he emigrated to Poland, where he lived for NINE YEARS? Considering he didn't speak Polish. Clue – [annoying patronising tone there] Poland is the route by which most narcotics enter the EU, across the border from Kaliningrad. [and even if true, that’s the only reason anyone ever lives there?!]

north856side wrote:
Tuesday, 29 December 2009 at 01:30 pm (UTC)
If we don't say a word when America execute mentally ill convicts then what gives us the right to demand this from China? If Gordon Brown disregard a computer hacker's autism from stopping his extradition to America when the crime was committed in this country then he should learn to keep his mouth shut. [I was with this one until the bolded bit. It makes no sense – kill this guy because we allowed extradition of someome else to another country].
Even if he did have bipolar (never been officially diagnosed by a qualified professional. Just hearsay from family and vested interest groups [who’s a vested interest group? Does he mean Amnesty International?]), who's to say he was in one of his "mania" [where to start – grammar poor, no understanding of how bi-polar works, no understanding of what was being asked by his family and their “vested interest groups.] at the time? Where is the evident [!!] to this? If every criminal claimed mental illness after being caught without any previous record to back this up then why not let them all out right now? [of course! That is the obvious outcome! Moron!]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
So why do these idiot conservatives trawl the left wing press in order to make their ill-informed and often offensive comments? Are they driven by mental illness? One wonders whether they appreciate the irony of the mentally ill disparaging other mentally ill people. Wouldn’t they be better off reading round the subject so they understand what they’re talking about?
I dread to read their comments about AS sufferers.

Monday, December 28, 2009


http://www.adn.com/money/industries/oil/story/1071036.html

Our caring sharing - environment loving BP are currently in court in Alaska fighting charges for negligence in maintaining key Prudhoe Bay pipelines.

The state sued BP's local operator, BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc., on March 31 seeking to collect compensatory and punitive damages as well as "lost" taxes and royalties for production shut-ins related to the 2006 pipeline spills.

The spills were from corrosion-damaged transit lines that carry sales-grade crude oil out of the Prudhoe Bay field and feed it into the trans-Alaska oil pipeline.

The suit cites a total production shortfall of at least 35 million barrels of oil and natural gas liquids from the Prudhoe Bay and Milne Point fields from 2006 through 2008.

The state's lawyers accuse BP of knowingly neglecting corroded pipelines in the interest of cutting costs, and the suit seeks punitive damages for "outrageous" or "reckless" conduct.

Apart from the state suit, BP also is defending a federal lawsuit the Environmental Protection Agency and pipeline regulators filed against the company on the same day the state sued. The federal suit seeks millions of dollars in fines for alleged water and air pollution violations, as well as failure to meet deadlines in a corrective action order from U.S. Department of Transportation pipeline regulators.

The state and federal suits are civil actions. Criminal prosecution of BP for the 2006 spills wrapped up for both governments in November 2007, when BP Alaska pleaded guilty to a federal environmental misdemeanor.


But it continues - the latest leak on 2nd December this year:
http://feww.wordpress.com/2009/12/02/bp-leaks-in-alaska-again/
http://feww.wordpress.com/2009/01/14/another-day-another-oil-spill-in-alaska/

Nowhere Man

Xmas has been upon us yet again. This year I had a quiet one. The last xmas I spent with my wife is three years ago now. The last two I spent at home with my parents and my sister's family. This year I decided to be grumpy by myself, and it's worked out pretty good.

Work is a doddle this time of year unless you're trying to achieve anything, and then it becomes frustrating as everyone around you turn into laughing chocolate eating goons with silly hats and no attention span. Some people like to go "woo" and "hey" for no good reason. People ahve finally stopped trying to tell me to cheer up now, maybe they're scared, maybe they don;t care, maybe they have finally worked out that I am what I am and nothing will change that.

I tried to get into the xmas cheer. I went to a bike radar drink - connected with no-one and left, not even drunk. Noone noticed me slipping out. Noone will notice my absence next year.

I've decided to stop arguing with climate sceptics (deniers is what I call most of them as they cannot argue using evidence) I've been called gobshite, cleric, evangelist, tree hugger, etc. but noone can prove to me that climate change is either a natural phenomenon or not happening. These deniers really ought to get their story straight as there are many, many incompatible claims being made - the warming is due to natural warming as we come out of the ice age, it is due to volcanoes, due to water vapour, due to methane from cows, the warming isn't happening and the ice melt is due to trees being cut down; it's cooling!!

I show figures from NASA that prove the last 10 years contained 8 of the hottest years in history and some fuckwit latches onto a health warning over rankings not to be taken too seriously....followed by a verbal pummeling to prevent me from explaining what that health warning actually meant - it did not mean the figures were not to be taken seriously just the rankings. that's why it said rankings and not figures. Try explaining that to some of the unscientific garbage i've been talking to in the past few weeks.

Anyway I lost my temper - for very good reason - so I've decided to make a tactical withdrawal from Bike radar for a few months. Maybe the legalistic private school mummy's boy fop will have pissed off by the time i go back.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Vicar Talks sense, Shock Horror

Vicar recommended shoplifting as lesser of two evils:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/north_yorkshire/8426205.stm

"Father Tim Jones, parish priest of St Lawrence and St Hilda in York, said stealing was a "better moral thing to do" than robbery or prostitution."

Richard Dobbs, of the British Retail Consortium, said shoplifting was "simply wrong".

Now, Dick Dobbs - do you mean illegal, immoral or sinful. I actually think you mean illegal.
As a sin it must be minor at best considering that people referred to by Timmy Jones, the ones who are suffering enough to need to shoplift, are at the receiving end of far worse sins.

Dick Dobbs is probably very rich, works for other very rich people - working to make them richer still - never mind the other immoral practices of the large supermarkets - raping the earth - ripping off farmers - paying lowest possible wage to their staff, etc.
Dick Dobbs probably has a very large house, is exceedingly comfortable, piles of cash in the bank, several expensive cars, and probably gives to charity to salve his guilty conscience. That may not be illegal, but it is immoral, and it is a sin.

If you believe religion should not be brought into politics then we should also ensure that commercial and political values do not get brought into religion.

And look at me, taking about religion. I don;t even believe in god.

CIA in Lithuania

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/8426028.stm

The CIA used at least two secret detention centres in Lithuania after the 11 September 2001 terror attacks on the US, a Lithuanian inquiry has found. The report by a Lithuanian parliamentary committee says that in 2005 and 2006 CIA chartered planes were allowed to land in Lithuania.

Friday, December 11, 2009

climate Fraud

Johann Hari: Leaders of the rich world are enacting a giant fraud

Be sure to read the fuckwitted comments underneath. I'm starting to worry that there are significant numbers of morons around who do nothing but post mildly abusive comments at the bottom of left wing or environmental articles. Why?

A Really Crap Story

Dearest friend,
Good day, How is you and your family, i hope that all is fine; before I contact you I, ask god to provide a good person who will help me out of this situation and God direct me to you. I will really like to have a good relationship with you, and i have a special reason why i decided to contact you. I decided to contact you because of the urgency of my situation here my step mother want to kill me and claim all my father riches and run away with it because she didn't have child, firs i am Jolana.Manniova 24years old girl from Liberia, the only daughter of Late prince Harry Manniova the deputy minister of national security under the leadership of president Charles Taylor who is now in exile after many innocent soul were killed, My father was killed by government of Charles Taylor, he accuse my father of coup attempt. I am constrained to contact you because of the abuse I am receiving from my step mother and she want to kill me and run away with me father wealth and money and properties. She planned to take away all my late father's treasury and properties from me since the unexpected death of my beloved Father. Meanwhile i wanted to escape to the Europe but she hides away my international passport and other valuable travelling documents. Luckily she did not discover where i kept my fathers File which contains important documents. So I decided to run to the refugee camp where i am presently seeking asylum under the United Nations High Commission for the Refugee here in Ouagadougou , Republic of Burkina Faso . I wish to contact you royally for a long term business relationship and investment assistance in your Country. My father of blessed Emory deposited the sum of (US$12) Million Dollars in Africa Development Bank Burkina-Faso with my name as the next of kin. However, I shall forward you with the necessary documents on confirmation of your acceptance to assist me for the transfer of these funds in your country. As you will help me in an investment, and i will like to complete my studies, as i was in my 1 year in the university, when the crisis started. It is my intention to compensate you with 50% i will take 40% and 10% will be any fee may come out in this transfer of the total money for your services and the balance shall be my investment capital. This is the reason why i decided to contact you. As soon as i receive your positive response showing your interest i will put things into action immediately. In the light of the above, I shall appreciate an urgent message indicating your ability and willingness to handle this transaction sincerely. I am waiting your urgent and positive response. Please do keep this to yourself and every communications shall be made through this email address alone for confidential purpose and you should not disclose it till i come over to your country, once the fund has been transferred into your bank count. Thanks, I will send you my pictures as soon as i get your good reply from you. Again please tell me more about yourself. And i will give you application letter of claim you will fill and send to the bank for urgent transfer. I am waiting to hear fro you urgently please. Thank you. Jolana.Manniova.

My reply?
FUCK OFF!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Iraq Inquiry - Lying Bastards

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/8405393.stm

and the worse thing is that the committee who are all establishment figures who supported the war in the first place are not challenging the lies.

Monday, December 07, 2009

As It Occurs To Me

Finally bought a ticket to see As It Occurs To Me, Richard Herring's almost improvised, hastily scripted weekly podcast. I've ben listening to it for free on my MP3 player but thought I ought to go and see it being recorded at least once.

It was not a good evening for me. I was far too tired to go anywhere having not slept the night before. But I cycled down to Leicester Square and unknowingly chained my bike up to someone else's. Unforgivable really.

then went for a pint (pic below) to kill time. I had timed it perfectly for ten past eight - the time it usually starts. But a Stewart Lee performance knocked Herring back till much later.

But even tiredness did not stop me from enjoying the show. It's not often I can go to see something that just makes me laugh and laugh.


It was after leaving the theatre that I discovered I'd locked onto someone else's bike. I apologised profusely even the though the guy was clearly passive aggressive and made certain remarks about how great his bike was compared to mine. I attempted to make a point about him being much more paranoid about theft than me as a result but it was lost on him, and I was too tired to press the point home properly.

A Risk To Human Health

My Twitter rating has gone up, apparently. It's currently at 16%. No, it doesn't mean much to me either.

It cost me £20 to buy new pedals - I only needed one, but thought I'd have both fitted, as, like shoes or socks, you can't buy them singly.

I cycled in today then. I had a very good ride...quite quick, incident free apart from having to shout at a chaffeur driven twat driving along in the cycle lane near Liverpool street station.

It only started raining when I was nearly at work.

at work I had the top management meeting - nothing to report, and it's been like that for weeks now. And each week it's an hour I'll never get back.

Steering Group meeting tomorrow, and I'm trying to plan it bit better than I have been for the past 6 months. There's a few things coming up that we have to deal with - Site Waste Management Plans; bat nests; oak processionary moth investation; Japanese Knotweed investation; planning for climate change legislation; consulting line representatives on training review; and more.

The SQE Department have more or less moved in around me now, and they're not really quieter than the finance people, but shouty man hasn't been around. Maybe he's gone to shout at the accountants on a different floor.

I'm heading down to Leicester Square Theatre after work - about 7.00 - to see recording of As It Occurs To Me. Can't wait. Concerned about what to do with the bike, might have to leave it at Holborn while I get tube down there and back.

OK - enough for now. Must get on.

Friday, December 04, 2009

The Met Police: Enemies of Freedom

In a continuing theme on my blog - an article in today's Independent which further spells out the sheer cuntiness of London's Stasi

Wake Up!! It's Yer Full Of Crazy Developments...

SchNEWS Issue 702, Friday 4th December 2009

Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):
www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news702.php

We encourage you to print, copy and distribute the SchNEWS
wherever you can...

amusing read

http://www.martian.fm/history_channel.htm
I've reached the never to be surpassed peak of my Twitter life: I received a direct message from the legendary music journalist and comedy writer David Quantick. Like me, he's orginally from Devon, and after John Peel and Stuart Maconie, probably did more to influence my taste in music in the 80s than any other person.

Of course I told him nothing of this - the tweet was a minor exchange about dogs, or as Quantick thinks of them: Dogs.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Fuck Off!

OK so I stay behind at work after hours so I can get some work done and I'm having to put with some twat shouting his head off at an accountant - and there is no need for it.

It just so happens that the finance team sit near me - and one manager seems to have got it into his head that walking over to the accountants at 5pm and screaming at them about his budget is going to achieve anything.

I have no idea what the dispute is, I don't care, I just want the shouting to be further away from me, where i can't hear it.

As I understand it the finance team are about to move to another floor - so it might be peace and quiet next week, Health and Safety advisors, who are moving in, are calmer and know about the effects of noise-stress at work. Though, I don't think shouty man is moving, and he might just find someone else to shout at.

As It Occurs To Me

As it's my birthday tomorrow - I bought myself an early birthday pressie. A ticket to see Richard Herring's As It Occurs To Me being recorded on the 7th December at Leicester Square Theatre, and a ticket to see what will be the 100th and may be the final Collings and Herrin podcast being recorded live also at Leicester Square, on the 1st of February.

I plan to buy a half decent mid range bottle of wine tonight - it'll be the first wine I've bought since the summer - and a couple of good Belgian beers - and start celebrating this evening, while surfing Twitter, and watching something good on DVD.

I've got tomorrow off; all I have to do is make sure I get to the bike shop. I didn't blog yesterday, but back on my bike for, oh, nearly an hour, and I noticed something odd happening under my left foot. Realised it was either something going wrong with the pedal or my shoe was falling apart. Either was quite likely. When I got off to look, on London Bridge, it turned out that the pedal was loose, the thread had been sheared off, and I ended up having to complete my journey with no left pedal.

Didn't cycle in today. Must get bike fixed tomorrow.

Also - as a slightly early birthday treat booked myself in to see "Age of Stupid", the film that makes a case for carbon reduction, and is being backed by the 10:10 campaign. i will be there taking notes.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown:

I'm beginning to feel some sympathy for Tony Blair is the title of an article by Yasmin Alibhai-Brown in the Independent today. I've read the article, and while I agree with the gist of what she says, I will never feel sorry for war criminal Tony Blair.

Oh Fuck

Charles Dickens Where are you When We Need You?!

Ian M Banks

While I enjoy Banks's sci fi novels i do find them strangely lacking in soul, but in a way i like that clinical feel to them, and they are very gripping. It's just that after reading them I feel I have gained nothing from the experience except a few hours of harmless escapism. I've started reading the Algebraist entirely in that spirit, in which other people may watch Hollywood blockbusters. The Algebraist is not part of his Culture Cycle he says it may become a trilogy, but at the moment is a standalone novel.

Also this week have enjoyed watching the third series of the Mighty Boosh - an improvement from the second series I think. I loved the song "Eels" and a Gary Numan cameo. Most of the already familiar Boosh characters seemed to make a return, and both Fielding and Fulcher seem to be excellent at playing women. Fulcher looked just like Rosanne Barr. I was very impressed.


I sat through over two hours of The Green Mile last night. I decided I'd give it a go a while ago but trying to watch a 188 minute film on Channel five where the ad breaks (and the News) are nearly as long as the programme is just a mug's game. I gave up with over an hour still to go. thought I might try again on DVD, but to be honest, it was syrupy okey homespun american nonsense about God and sin. It was bollox and I hated it. So I read the synopsis on Wikipedia - what a load of old nonsense. Won't be trying to watch that again.

I have a rule that I do not watch anything with Tom Hanks in it. I broke that rule last night and lived to regret it.

solar panels - cheaper than we thought

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8386460.stm

climate debate links

I've got myself into another row on the internet - these links will remind me to start checking out some of the climate sceptic's arguments:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgemonbiot/2009/feb/03/climate-change-daily-telegraph-christopher-booker

http://www.monbiot.com/archives/2008/09/23/the-patron-saint-of-charlatans/

http://anhonestclimatedebate.wordpress.com/2009/05/16/monbiot-tries-to-disprove-christopher-booker-then-admits-he-boobed/

http://www.ukwatch.net/author/george_monbiot_0

http://www.monbiot.com/archives/2009/09/14/answers-come-there-none/

http://www.monbiot.com/archives/2009/09/14/correspondence-with-the-spectator/

film with bellamy to watch:
http://www.monbiot.com/archives/2009/01/16/david-bellamy-challenged/

http://richardwilsonauthor.wordpress.com/tag/george-monbiot/

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/blog/2009/nov/13/climate-deniers-today-programme

http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/07/christopher_bookers_misinforma.php

new scientist
http://portal.campaigncc.org/node/2193

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn11462-climate-change-a-guide-for-the-perplexed.html

anti-cycling article in times

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article6936280.ece

This article is lies, hyperbole, complete bollox, hypocracy and prejudice all stitched together into one long piece of hateful shite.

WATCH out for the iPod zombies. - My comments in bold.
Cyclists distracted by music blaring in their ears have become the latest menace on Britain's roads.
The fashion for cyclists to wear earphones on crowded city streets is being held partly responsible for the recent upsurge in cycling injuries and deaths, as well as collisions with pedestrians.
No it isn't. There hasn't been an upsurge. The number of cyclists increased, and corresponding casualties rose too - though not quite as high.

Road safety groups are alarmed at the practice and this weekend Edmund King, the president of the AA, called on the Department for Transport (DfT) to launch a campaign warning cyclists of the risk. The number of urban cyclists has grown so sharply that safety groups say the risky behaviour of a minority can cause serious problems.

Safety groups? - so apart from the confirmed anti-cycling AA - which safety groups? The AA is not a safety group by the way you morons - it is a roadside rescue organisation and forms part of the outspoken motorists lobby. Were any cycling organisations spoken to before writing this article?

So anyway - what evidence do you have?

It is not known how many of these cases were caused by people listening to music because the DfT and the police do not record the information.

oh - none then.

However, many cyclists believe the problem is increasing. Internet cycling forums are full of heated exchanges between indignant cyclists and seething motorists, railing against the "erratic behaviour" and "breathtaking stupidity" of riders who career through the traffic, sporting the telltale white wires of an iPod.

You've been on the internet and found some idiots arguing and made up a filler article about it.

"If cyclists had to take a test, like all other road users do, and pay insurance, then perhaps there would be a lot less idiots riding their bikes, wearing their iPod or mobile phone earphones and expecting everyone else to not only give way to them but to also read their minds as to their next action," said one blogger after the death of a London cyclist last week.

If this was from an internet forum then there would have been a reply similar to this - which of course, The Times, not having a remit for balance, doesn't feel the need to include:

1. Most cyclists do have insurance, either becasue they belong to the CTC or LCC, or similar group, or because it is included in their household insurance. I have insurance. Most cyclists I know have insurance.

2. As for reading minds, I'd settle for leaving reasonable space, keeping to the speed limit, indicating appropriately, and using your fecking eyes, like we all have to do on the roads. I expect cars to give way to me when I have the right of way, again, not always obvious to the motorist.


Another said that "iPod zombies are a menace. I saw a bus clip one of them the other day in Victoria who was oblivious to anything around him."

So a bus hits a cyclist but it's the cyclists fault. Shame on the cyclist for not reading the bus drivers mind.

This weekend Nicholas Gardiner, an Oxfordshire coroner, spoke out about the risks of riding with iPods, saying that cyclists' careless attitude had to be challenged. "Frankly I find it quite frightening the things cyclists do," he said. "They ought to take a minimum amount of care over their safety. It seems to me ridiculous to deprive yourself of what is the second most important of your senses."
Last year he recorded a verdict of accidental death when Abigail Haythorne, 17, died after pulling out into an oncoming car. She had an MP3 player in her pocket, and her earphones tucked inside her neck scarf, and he said it was possible she was wearing them when she was struck by the car.

words fail me here. So I can't even have an MP3 plyer in my pocket lest it be ruled after my death that it was reason that a car/ bus/ lorry driver, unable to use their eyes, or their brakes, ploughed into me and killed me. Excellent!

Pedestrians, too, have fallen victim to cyclists listening to music and apparently oblivious to those around them. In June, a six-year-old girl from Wallasey, Merseyside, suffered serious injuries after she was mown down on the pavement by an iPod-wearing cyclist who didn't even stop to help her, according to witnesses. The girl underwent hours of surgery to reconstruct her shattered leg.

I think the important bit here was that the cyclist was on the pavement, not the fact that s/he was wearing an ipod. Funny that although the cyclist never stopped they managed to pick up the detail about the ipod. I don;t find them that easy to see, especially while i'm rushing over to help an injured 6 year old girl. So, is this more bollox. Could be!

The issue of risky behaviour by cyclists has become a more pressing issue for motorists because ministers are considering whether to make them liable for crashes, even if they were not at fault.

Oh dear - a complete misrpresentation of a system that seeks to redress the balance for cyclists who find it hard to obtain compensation from motorists, even though the majority of collisions are the fault of the motorists, and the majority of the damage is inflicted on the cyclist.

Youth for Road Safety, a new group, is to launch a campaign called Tune into Traffic under the slogan "Your earphones could kill you".
Manpreet Darroch, who is leading the campaign, said: "It's a serious problem which is only going to get worse as the number of cyclists increases — lots of people are completely oblivious to what's going on around them. (But that's enough about the motorists - Porgy comment) People don't realise how dangerous listening to music is on the roads — whether pedestrian or cyclist (or motorist? - Porgy comment) . It takes one of your key senses away. People shouldn't do it. (Speaks a non-cyclist - Porgy)
"You can legislate until you are blue in the face. On the issue of iPods we just need to raise awareness."

However CTC, the national cycling group, argues that people should be left to make their own judgments. "We encourage deaf people to cycle so we don't think it's essential to hear traffic in order to ride," said a spokeswoman. "You have to be sensible. The most important thing is that you look around you all the time — especially over your shoulder."

This is placed here without further comment. The people who know what they're talking about - the cyclist organisation - in this article they are near the end where they shoyuld have been up front - they weakly argure wheras what the AA said was reported as a fact.

There is currently no legislation in place to govern either the use of music players or the wearing of helmets on the road, but cyclists can be prosecuted for dangerous riding — an offence that attracts a maximum penalty of £2,500.
The police claim to be getting tougher on cycling offences and Boris Johnson, the mayor of London, has promised "complete zero tolerance of cyclists who break the rules". However, David Cameron, the Tory leader, last year rode unpunished through red lights in London.
Johnson plans to give even greater leeway to cyclists, to encourage people to switch to one of the greenest forms of transport. He is studying the possibility of allowing cyclists to shoot red lights on left turns at a junction.
Last week King called on the DfT to address the iPod issue. "They're meant to be mobile, but if you are cycling, you need all your senses about you."

Previous anti-cyclist articles:

Naked Cyclist

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/8386167.stm

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Running Nose Blues

I've got another cold! Every damned December - except this one's arrived a week early.

Pleased with the way things are going in the Iraq War enquiry. It seems to be establishing very quickly that the war was illegal.
http://www.independent.co.uk/

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I ended up embroiled in an argument on a bike forum over the Lib Dems performance prior to and during the Iraq War...with another poster called Toontra.
http://www.bikeradar.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12664285&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=20

Here's the main points again

an article from the Guardian prior to the invasion showing how weak - or non-existent - the Lib Dems stance against the war was:

apparent split within Nato over Iraq.
The row within Nato, which threatens to derail US plans for a military invasion of Iraq, flared yesterday when France, Germany and Belgium blocked a move to send Nato missile batteries to defend Turkey in the event of a war.
In an emergency answer the armed forces minister, Adam Ingram, tried to defend Tony Blair's handling of both Nato and the US administration for nearly an hour.
But Conservatives shouted "shame" as Mr Ingram reported to MPs on the affair, angered that the secretary of state for defence, Geoff Hoon, was not in the chamber to answer questions.
However, some Tories and many Labour backbenchers applauded France and Germany's sceptical stance.
The former Labour shadow foreign minister, Gerald Kaufman, described Donald Rumsfeld, the American secretary of state for defence, as "like a bull in a china shop".
Labour's leading anti-war campaigner, Jeremy Corbyn, said the French position "reflects a desire for peace rather than war", but …
And here’s the clincher…
Paul Keetch, the Liberal Democrat defence spokesman, made the Lib Dem line clearer by saying "France and Germany have made their point and should back down now".

Friday, November 13, 2009

Back in Town

Had a good few days off - arrived back in London today. Now I have to get organised for Monday - expecting a slight pile up of work.

Monday, November 09, 2009

No Talking

I was at the Luminaire on Saturday night to see the High Llamas. Then today I receive an email from the Luminaire which includes the following paragraph:

A big SOD OFF to whoever wrote the whining, passive-aggressive note on
our mailing list sign-up sheet, asking us to let him or her speak and
not to "shush us" when the bands were playing, suggesting that
shushing those who're talking is not very nice. Nor is ruining our
mailing list sign-up sheet but you go right ahead and do that, and
talk when the bands are on, and we'll go right ahead and tell you get
out. If you're ignorant enough to ruin someone else's enjoyment of a
gig by yapping about X-Factor or whatever the hell it is you talk
about then you waive the right to appeal.

Never let it be said we don't stand our ground on points of principal.

Good on you Luminaire management! It's only a little venue and people prattling on about crap will be a real annoyance. In fact the last time I was at the Luminaire to see a couple of bands there was a persistently noisy group in the audience chatting all the way through the Dials, the support act. Unfortunately no-one told them to shut up. But then maybe that was because they were the main act - the Mekons - and entourage. While I enjoyed their performance (no one talked through their act) my wife took agin them, said they were shit and has failed to forgive their rudeness ever since.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Bike's becoming increasingly knackered. I noticed today that the yellow is showing through on my back tyre and the hub apears to be completely buggered. I should have put it in for a service on Saturday but as i'm off work for most of the week, i won't be cycling again...for a week.

Friday, November 06, 2009

SchNEWS 698

Wake Up!! Wake Up!! It's Yer Junk Mail...
 
SchNEWS Issue 698, Friday 6th November 2009

Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):
www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news698.php
We encourage you to print, copy and distribute the SchNEWS
wherever you can...


Chat to your friends for free on selected mobiles. Learn more.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Don't Say the "C" Word

I've been downloading a podcast called "Miller's Tales" - this is a posh-sounding woman, based in Scotland I think, who puts together a roundup of what she calls "Americana" or even folk music. But what she won't call it is "country", even though on the podcasts i lisened to the music is 90/95% country. Country gets a bad rap in Britain. say you like country and people seem to imagine hoe-downs, buying gingham for emmylou, loose fitting dungarees, redneck Texans or KKK conventions. There is not a period in history where country was remotely associated with right wing bigotry or any of the other cliches about the southern states of the USA.

In reality - throughout the history of country there have been great rebels breaking rules, pushing the music forward. Hank Williams was greatly influenced by black blues players, Woody Guthrie was a communist, Johnny Cash protested against the Vietnam War, Charlie rich was black, KD Lang is a lesbian, Steve Earle is a one man revolution and has been strongly against the Bush regime, Dixie Chix got banned for speaking out aginst the war in Iraq, Emmylou Harris is very much the liberal, etc.... you'd be ahrd pushed to find the stereotypical southern bigot anywhere in modern country, and even in the past - they were far from the whole story. I think what fools people is that the country establishment has always been very conservative - Hank Williams was persona non grata in Nashville for years - but then the rock establishment is still incredibly conservative, usually Republican supporting, obviously racist right into the 1980s, still very sexist, and extremely limited in it's outlook, preferring the rebellious acts of an inept 14 year old boy to genuine acts of subversion against an illegal and reactionary government - this is why raawwwk is the music of america's establishment, and country is the music of the people.


Here's today's weather brought to you by my new phone:

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Brian Haw arrested 7 pm this evening



Looks like a new chapter in the continuing harrassment of Brian Haw - the only man keeping the anti-War protest alive and in the faces of those who voted for an illegal invasion.

Keep up to date with the following links:
http://mylondondiary.co.uk/
http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/10/440918.html

Friday, October 30, 2009

picture show

I bought some old horror DVDs this week - the original Thing in a double set with the remake - Creepshow advertise with commentary by Romero (which wasn;t on there!!! *angry face*) and yesterday a three disc set of 1930s Dracula films starring Bela Lugosi...undead undead undead.

Creepshow's got it's good points and it's not really what's on the screen, more what is coming out of the speakers. The soundtrack for the segment that Romero wrote - the zombie sequence, funnily enough - is absolutely excellent - electronic, tense, reminscent of both Dawn and Dead in parts.

And then, last weekend I bought a 5 disc box set of all Romero's excellent zombie flicks, knowing full well that number six is already out there, but at £22 I couldn't resist. Dawn, Day and Land all have commentaries and Diary is full of extras. Second watching of Diary - with much less expectation and on a small screen and it seemed to work much better.

Day looks superb - I've only ever seen it on tv - and with it looking a bit grainy.

I also got to see Dark Star this week. At first I was taken aback with low quality picture and sound - looked like a VHS! But soon forgot that and got taken with the film. It is really funny - not so much the beach ball alien scene which is silly, but talking to the bomb about phenomonology; and the interaction between the astronauts. The scene with the dead captain being visited is pretty spooky and reminds me off the PK Dick's dead half life idea in -----.

How Twitter Warps Your Mind

I've been neglecting the blog again - still I've not had a lot to say. One thing that doesn;t help is when I go reading other people's blogs. Most of them cover the same sort of stories - recent ones have been Nick Griffin, Balloon Boy, etc. I've commented on all these things in Twitter, but to be honest I don;t do this just to write about the same stuff that everyone else is.

Twitter has been a revelation for me. I'm following about 400 odd Twitterers. Many of those I'm following are news streams: Independent, Financial Times, Guardian, New York Times, etc. I'm following quite a few comedians, environmental twitterers, and people that I've discovered by chance - some live near me - some clicked to follow me - some I turned up on random surfs.

I was really enjoying myself last weekend following the action using #swoop to find relevant posts. I even posted encouring tweets, and retweeted interesting #swoop tweets to others including the 130 odd who are following me at the moment.

Now I have a Twitter app on my phone I'm Tweeting every day - morning, noon and night.

Wake Up!! It's Yer Mugshot In The Arm...

SchNEWS Issue 697, Friday 30th October 2009

Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):
www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news697.php

We encourage you to print, copy and distribute the SchNEWS
wherever you can...

Third Class`Road Users

This is the rare example of a useful cycl lane - providing a buffer against reasonably heavy traffic you get long this Thameside route - but in the year I've been using this route the cycle lane has been available for about 2 weeks in total.
This is the A102 flyover in Greenwich - it's a huge roundabout where lorries and buses run red lights regularly and cars ignore the ASLs laid out to protect cyclists. A girl died here earlier in the year - killed by a hit-and-run lorry driver - hence the ghost bike.

This is the ASL at the junction - and as you can see from the state of it - Grenwich aren't exactly committed to protecting cyclists - a bit short sighted considering a young woman died here so recently.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

CIA caught out again

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/karzais-brother-on-cia-payroll-1811154.html

beautiful pain

clocks change make everything just a little bit more miserable. Still getting back on the bike more often and fitness returns. still wondering if it was a mild case of swine flu that knocked me out at the beginning of October - the only way i'll know is if i eventually get a less mild dose of swine flu.

still listening to brian eno cds, and quite a few country women now - Emmylou Harris, Loretta Lynn, Nanci Griffiths, Roseanne Cash, Gillian Welch; also got the latest British Sea Power (not sure); Franz Ferdinand (their best), divine comedy (genius!), Pillows and Prayers compilation (an old favourite, still as good as when i was 14). I've even got U2's greatest hits on here - there is good styuff among their early stuff marred by the fact that old tit face is singing. Never Mind.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Wake Up!! Wake Up!! It's Yer (earlier than usual) Izzy Whizzy..

SchNEWS Issue 696, Friday 23rd October 2009

Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):
http://www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news693.php

We encourage you to print, copy and distribute the SchNEWS
wherever you can...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

New SchNews

schnews New Issue
- Anarchists bombers on the loose in Mexico,
#Mainshill camp attacked,
#EDL in Manchester, and more... www.schnews.org.uk/n/695

Power station protests have started

Information as it happens on Twitter
http://twitter.com/home#search?q=%23swoop

Twit pics from the protest
http://twitpic.com/k8b4c

Friday, October 16, 2009

IEMA over




hooray!! that's done with and i might have done alright, the questions i answered were all pretty straightforward.

After I left the venue I cycled back to Windsor to look around and get the train back to London. Had a bit of a flashback to my visit in 1977 - the tourist gift shops i remember by the castle looked just the same though all the other shops, pretty much, have changed. Security round the castle is a bit more serious these days too.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

IEMA blues

I'm into the second week of studying and devising new and inventive ways to avoid it. I even signed up for a new mobile phone last week - which ended up being the ultimate diversion since I've spent most of my time since workng out what it can do and how I can make it do what it claims to be able to do.

although I have managed some work in between and am probably as ready as I ever will be to retake my IEMA on friday.

Got to go into work today - even though I'm on leave - need to check my emails and get in touch with Connaught who are providing/ administrating (?) the IEMA exam.

So - back on the bike - the weather's superb for it, I've got 900 new tunes on the pod-player. all systems go....and remember kids...


New Music

I've got a backlog of music now - still hooked on those Brian Eno CDs froma couple of weeks back - and the Fleet Foxes, Neil Young, Emmylou Harris are all still on the pod player.

This box-set is keeping me occupied - I'm on disc two at the moment - there's 4 music discs in the set, and a DVD all of excllent quality, featuring duets with Dolly Parton, Gram Parsons, Elvis Costello, and more.

This is last week's haul - a live Elvis costello album featuring jazzed up versions of old songs, Chemical Brothers Greatest Hits collection - which is very fine indeed, and Loretta Lynn's latest CD, produced by Jack White from the White Stripes.

And this week's - Divine Comedy; Funkadelic; Franz Ferdinand; British Seapower. all this is now on my pod-player.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Against cuts

The conservatives are always crying for more cuts: in good times and in bad. If you like me are a public sector worker then you'll know that it's always jam tomorrow. Now health cuts, welfare cuts and local authority cuts will ensure a fast track to banana republic land - a land of extreme wealth and privelege side by side with increasingly large pockets of extreme poverty.

So why do we need the cuts?

As usual the Independent manages to provide the voice of reason in an increasingly hysterical debate.

Wake Up!! Wake Up!! It's Yer Fuel To The Fire...

SchNEWS Issue 694, Friday 9th October 2009
Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):

http://www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news694.php

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Testing

Well a new epoch in blogging begins as I post from my phone.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Atheists Will Inherit The Earth

Middle america doesn't like it - buit their sons and daughters are throwing off the shackles of religion, and refusing to believe the 2000+ year old myths peddled in america's churches, by america's increasingly bonkers fundamentalists.

We all thought there was going to be a war between islam and christianity a few years back, but perhaps christians and rational people will end up fighting for supremacy?

Christians are hardly going to sit back and take it are they? They are not meek and they rarely turn the other cheek. They insist that atheists shut their mouths and compromise on their believes while the christians themselves become nuttier and ever more intransigent in their beliefs. soemthing's got to give.

Black Faced Idiots

I would not have believed this if I hadn't sen it with my own eyes. It appears in racism terms the Aussies are where we were in 1974 with Black and White Minstrel, Curry and Chips, Love thy Neighbour etc. It takes Harry Connick to bring a reality check and even then, I don't think the presenter really gets it.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Still Ill

I'm off work this week and next week...only due to go in on Monday to wrap up a few things and handover to my boss for the i had off. However, I immediately fell ill: Aching joints, sore throat, bad stomach, headaches, sneezing, lack of energy. It was a bit like flu in fact. I had yesterday off work as a result. No temperature though. Now today - I thought I was recovered...got up at 9.30 and did very little - cooked breakfast - played around on the internet till 12.00. Then I spent a couple of ours studying my IEMA notes, shaved, tidied my bedroom up a little, and realised I wasn't up to my full strength.

Still - needed to get out as I was cooped up all day yesterday. Went up to Welling to buy essential supplies. There was a quite nice blonde lady staring at me across the vegetable display in Lidl's but apart from that - uneventful. By the time I got through the checkout I was zapped of all strength, but didn't have my bus pass so had to walk. It was extremely slow progress, but got home exhausted. A nice little look forward to old age.

So I'm still ill. Tomorrow I want to go up to Bexleyheath library. Watch this space to see if I make it and home again.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Wake Up!! It's Yer Offence Is The Best Form Of Attack...

SchNEWS Issue 693, Friday 2nd October 2009

Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):
www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news693.php

We encourage you to print, copy and distribute the SchNEWS
wherever you can...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

this is amusing

http://www.easycalculation.com/health/bal.php

I can't help wondering if this is of any practical use. I usually know when I'm drunk. Maybe if I'm planning how much I need to get drunk in a certain time?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

September Song

September is nearly over and I haven't even put a "September Song" compilation onto my MP3 player yet! But I have attempted to kick start my cycling again. I've had a poor month - I'm not even going to reach 400 miles this month. However, still managed 4 days last week, and intend to do the same this week. I'm going to aim for 600 miles in October.

This is my last full week in work till the last week in October - the next two weeks will be taken up by studying for the IEMA exam I'll be taking in Windsor soon.

Had a good cycle ride on Sunday with two ladies, and we cycled from Bexleyheath Train Station, via Dartford Heath, close to Hextable and Darenth, through Eynsford and back to Bexley along the south eastern boundary of Bromely Borough.

Weather was superb, if anything it got a little hot after 1.00. We stopped for tea and cake at Lullingstone, got slightly lost soon after, but not for long.

Back in Bexley at 2.00 pm. Saying goodbye to my cycling companions, I took off into Belvedere, down into Plumstead and Woolwich. I intended to take some photos of the old Thames Poly buildings which have been empty for some years now. The old halls of residence have been demolished too.

Then a quick beer and back to Welling for 5 pm.

Over the weekend I downloaded plenty of podcasts - I now have a mountain of them to listen to - 20 XFM Adam and Joe podcasts; In Our Times; 6Music Adam and Joe; three Collings and Herrin; two Perfect Tens by Phil and Phil; some guardian podcasts; Jon Richardson; Mark Kermode; Danny Baker; Science in Action; Thinking Allowed; Dr Karl.

man with asperger syndrome
men wearing tights
man with alzheimer's

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Big Changes In Woolwich

Spent an hour looking around woolwich and checking out my old student day haunts.
The now defunct Thames Polytechnic logo still etched on the doors.

Not the main entrance to the Poly - but this was where I usually went in and out. New (ish) flats above the shops.



The Woolwich Centre is a-coming:
And then as it was such a lovely day - I went up to Shooters Hill / Oxleas Wood to have a look around:



The tower is not in great shape these days - cracks run from top to bottom:

Friday, September 25, 2009

Wake Up!! It's Yer Booyaka Booyaka...

SchNEWS Issue 692, Friday 25th September 2009

Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):
www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news692.php

We encourage you to print, copy and distribute the SchNEWS
wherever you can...

pitchfork

http://pitchfork.com/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pitchfork_Media

 



Upgrade to Internet Explorer 8 Optimised for MSN. Download Now

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Daily hate Mail (with correct links)


The Daily Mail has been keeping up it's anti-cyclist campaign all week.

ARTICLE ONE

ARTICLE TWO

Rachel Sugden is a dangerous and abusive driver - read article

http://www.thisisbristol.co.uk/lifestyle/Rachael-Sugden-outsider-Bristol/article-1365165-detail/article.html

make sure you read the comments underneath - they are brilliant.

Here Is The News

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8271221.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/8271978.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/oxfordshire/8272110.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/8271965.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/edinburgh_and_east/8271037.stm

Water on the Moon
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8272144.stm
Really odd dream. I remember a prisoner being held by the police with hundreds of people around to ensure this prisoner didn't escape - the hundreds came from the police, the armed forces, various uniformed youth organisations, such as ATC.

The army chap in charge was a spy - i knew but nobody else did. It was all set on an island that had ruined buidlings gradually returning to the wild (orford ness?) a massive thunder and lightning storm going on aorund us, but no rain.

The army chap in charge took the policewoman with the prisoner and put a gun to her head. His intent was to free the prisoner without letting anyone know he was a spy for the enemy. He took everyone prisoner and made us all stand where he could control us. I was getting worried now.

I scanned the faces of the poeple - many of whom were kids who didn't know their lives were in serious danger. Then - looking through a gap in some trees we saw two spacheships landing. I was talking to someone nearby, does this mean aliens are landing? Now I was scared. What if they decided to kill us all? Would we be able to run away?

The aliens turned out to be friendly - and the rest of the dream involved their exporations of the planet. They were given a plane to explore in and chose to drive it into a tunnel - it got seriously damaged but amazingly turned into a large mchanical dog and ran everywhere with the aliens sitting inside.

All this turned out to be a John Walters movie I was watching with a couple of friends. I was tearful at the end and the girl sitting next to me asked me what i thought and i gave it four out of ten, which she didn't believe, although the guy on the other side of her gave it five.

Something else about pushing a shopping trolley - heavy and boring - somehow i couldn't do it - too tired - approached a large square with loads of people waiting for buses, etc.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Hooray! It's Autumn.

I love this time of year - despite the fact that winter is fast approaching, there is something about the light at this time of year.

And I'm back on the bike. managed to get home in just over an hour today - may be my fastest time yet - an average of 15 mph - not bad for an old git like me.

I've got a full day of meetings tomorrow - not even time for lunch - barely time to travel between meetings. The one in the afternoon is quite likely to be stressful as well; union reps will be in attendance; these meetings tend to be quite confrontational, and i don;t get paid enough....

I'll be looking to my boss to stand up for me, as it is his strategic plan which i have been following for the past two months - i'm not disagreeing with it - he's been correct all down the line - it's just that he's in a better place to defend himself than i am.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Before The Cat

http://beforethecat.blogspot.com/

My early diaries - leaving school....Thames Poly.....Eurorailing....two journeys across North America....starting work....eco protests

Saturday, September 19, 2009

This Week's Chosen Albums

I've been to the central library again - Bexleyheath is very well stocked with cds.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Wake Up!! It's Yer Special 'Double B-Side' Issue...

SchNEWS Issue 691, Friday 18th September 2009

Read this issue online (from noon Saturday):
www.schnews.org.uk/archive/news691.php

We encourage you to print, copy and distribute the SchNEWS
wherever you can...

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

twat!

Top riders have hit out at TV chef James Martin after he proclaimed his hatred of cyclists and described how he caused a group to crash after sneaking up behind them in an electric sportscar.

In his column in Saturday's Daily Mail, Martin, star of the BBC's Saturday Kitchen, complained about London cyclists who have a holier-than-thou attitude, saying: "God, I hate those cyclists. Every last herbal tea-drinking, Harriet Harman-voting one of them.
"That's one of the reasons I live in the countryside, where birds tweet, horses roam, pigs grunt and Lycra-clad buttocks are miles away."
He went on to review the Tesla Roadstar, an all-electric supercar, but soon returned to the anti-cycling theme, saying: "Twenty minutes into my test drive I pulled round a leafy bend, enjoying the birdsong – and spotted those damned Spider-Man cyclists.
"Knowing they wouldn't hear me coming, I stepped on the gas, waited until the split second before I overtook them, then gave them an almighty blast on the horn at the exact same time I passed them at speed.
"The look of sheer terror as they tottered into the hedge was the best thing I've ever seen in my rear-view mirror. I think this could be the car for me."
Professional cyclists were quick to respond, with Bradley Wiggins and Robbie McEwen posting (unprintable) comments on their Twitter pages.
Meanwhile, Cycling Plus editor Rob Spedding accused him of "third-rate, me-too Clarksonism". A Facebook page called "I hate James Martin" has been set up and his Wikipedia page was sabotaged.
http://www.bikeradar.com/news/article/tv-chef-james-martin-cooks-up-a-storm-with-anti-cycling-remarks-23188

Shoe Thrower Tortured

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/8256525.stm

The World of Philip K Dick Comes ever Closer

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8253807.stm

Keith Floyd Dies

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8256260.stm

He became well known in 1985, but I knew about him slightly earlier thanks to his spots on the BBC in the westcountry. I've always felt inspired by him in my cooking, however, I've never actually tried one of his recipes. I'm more inspired by turning the act of cooking into a social event, and knocking back a fair amount of booze too.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Feck off!!!!!

Ok - I've been in a foul mood all day. I only got to sleep at about 3.30 this morning and when I'm tired I get ratty. I am really ratty right now.

I'm getting annoyed about things that I can normally tolerate. Effing drinks machine has run out of milk. It's always effing running out of milk!! And yet it's always being serviced, so what's the problem? Now I'm drinking black coffee and I've already got a headache.

The Zen Mozaic keeps playing the same sodding songs when i put it on random. That's NOT random!!!!

Too tired to ride today _ I would have crashed, ridden into a lorry, or just blown up and had massive road rage at every other vehicle ont he road.

It was the sodding television that kept me up last night - with the volume right up till 3 in the morning. I blanked it out by listening to music on my noise reducing headphones, but I still didn;t sleep!!!!

I did get to listen to Prefab Sprout, Lightning Seeds and Gillan Welch albums whilst lying on my back in the dark, occasionally dropping off, but always waking again, until finally at 3.30 I heard the noises of my co-habitant going to bed, and all was quiet, as long I could drop off before the sodding birds started up.

I dreamt I was in a muslim theme park - part of Afghanistan that had been cleared and declared safe. Camels slept on little shelves half way up cliff faces. I had three women with me - and I loved them all. We were travelling back to England, on foot/ by bus depending which bit of the dream you believe. As we entered Blighty we passed a man in a fez and then an Anglican priest blessing each and everyone of us, to help remove the taint of islam from us. I thought "ha! He doesn;t know but he's just blessed a pagan".

I joined the Greenwich University website today as an alumni - I didn;t know such a service was available. Will sign up for the Facebook site too.

Added Beggars Banquet by the Stones, March To Fuzz by Mudhoney, Doolittle - The Pixies, Parallel Lines, Blondie, Indiscreet by sparks, Drums and Wires - XTC, Led Zep Box set disc 1, a concert by Tom Lehrer, American IV by Johnny Cash, Countdown - Pulp, to my Zen MP3 player yesterday.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Evolutionary Theory: Is this all there is?

A Humanist Philosophers day conference
Venue Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL



Starting at / on 31st October 2009


Start time 10:00 to 16:00

A day conference by the Humanist Philosophers, supported by the British Humanist Association and South Place Ethical Society. www.humanism.org.uk/shop/tickets

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Before The Cat

Before I became the cat in 2004 I kept a diary on paper and floppy disc.

I am embarking on a project of retrieving editing and publishing this diary, along with relevant photos, and accounts of events, gigs, protest actions, etc. that I was involved with, either as a participant, organiser or audience member.

So far I've stuck up my very earliest diaries written in 1989, an account of my last summer within the orbit of Thames Polytechnic, photos from my holidays 1988 - 1993; an account of my first trip to the US, and press clippings of some of the protests I was involved with.
I was back to a 5 day week this week, and it was pretty hard-going. for a start I was back on the bike, and my fitness has taken a backward step, so I just about managed 4 days...building up now for next year's ambitious plan for completing between 8,000 and 10,000 miles....work is settling down now though it won't go back to how it was....new boss...changes are definitely afoot. It's now time to make the local managers take responsibilty in their own areas, and I get more involved in top level stuff, strategic planning, policing the lines, procedures and guidance, etc...
So I was pushing it - working late on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday...still in the office at eight....then cycling home (catching Maconie and Radcliffe walking Adrian's Wall, and brilliant Richard Hawley session on thursday), getting in about ten, cooking and eating, watching a DVD (Bang!Bang! Reeves and Mortimore's 1999 series), washing, tidying up a bit, logging onto the internet, all before getting into bed around one.

Booked a ticket to see the new independent sci-fi film, "Moon", with a Q&A session by the director, Duncan Jones....and what an unassuming down to earth bloke he is...I'd have expected a spoilt brat at the very least...but not at all. Jones has worked his way up from assisting a director, through the advertising industry, eventually working for Ridley Scott's company, and now into movies...I think he may just end up being as culturally important as his dad, maybe more so.

The film was written for Sam Rockwell, the character's called Sam, and Rockwell is just about the only actor in it, and what a great performance from him! It's about loneliness, as well as personal identity....the film didn't go where i expected it to...credit to the film for that...it was low budget with no obvious CGI effects...if you love British sci-fi but always wish that it was done with a bit of loving care and attention, and involving actors who understand that projecting to the audience is not always appropriate, then this film is for you. References to Bladerunner, Outland, Alien...all films I loved as a child...and earlier films, Solaris and Silent Running.

Anyway - I'm not into spoilers - go and see it - it's out now; in London you can see it at the Prince Charles in Soho.
Unfortunately missed Nick Cave talkign about his new book in London on Wednesday, and was too tired to go to the SELFs meeting in London Bridge on Thursday...but I'm really glad I pulled it together for Friday!
Left the Prince Charles at 11.30, and immediately found myself transported into the Land of The Drunk, Leicester Square has become an alien space for me, especially as I'm sober, most people about half my age or therabouts: doesn't anyone my age go out any more?
The woman who sat opposite me on the train in a nice, elegant, jacquard shift dress, her knees banging against mine as she dropped into place on her seat, then sat slumped, mouth open with distressed expression on her face....her phone rang and she declared that she felt sick...clearly very drunk....i spent the rest of the journey with gritted teeth, trying to hide in my copy of the Fortean times, but keeping an eye on the potential vomit machine slumped in front of me.
Luckily she fell asleep, and did not vomit, though she did miss her stop at Eltham and followed me off at Welling after some guy woke her up.
I had to push my way off the train past more slumped drunks who wouldn't or couldn't move out of the way...into the refreshingly cool Welling air, to join in with the Zombie walk towards Welling High Street. I was probably the only one not completely shit-faced, but so tired it hardly made any difference.

David Van DePitte


Timely that I should have acquired my first ever copy of "What's Going On?", the Marvin Gaye classic just two weeks before the passing of David Van Depitte, the arranger of this recognised masterpiece, and composer in his own right.....more to come

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Wow - the Times goes pro-cycling

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/shortened
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/shortened

"In an age of urban congestion and fears over CO2, we want more people on bikes. If most manage not to get knocked off them, all the better. London has a bicycling mayor and soon Britain may have a bicycling prime minister. And yet, throughout our cities, provision for cyclists remains perfunctory at best, and lunatic at worst. If we are to have cycle lanes, they must be wider. Where possible, they should also have curbs. Painting boxes is no better than ticking them".

Maybe we should be looking to Denmark as a role model...

In an effort to double the number of cyclists nationwide by 2014, the government is planning to put 2 billion kroner into a new pool created to improve conditions for cyclists.

And with city councils getting up to 50 percent of their bicycle-related expenses reimbursed through the proposal, the government expects the total funding going into cycling improvements over the next five years to reach almost 3 billion kroner.

Friday, September 04, 2009

A day off! Hadn't realised how hard I was working. The audit's been over 2 weeks now, I'm still feeling worn out. Applying for my own job, & having no boss or support at all through the audit process has really taken it out of me. ...Now I have to study for the IEMA exam in October, & will shortly be taking over responsibilty for the EMS of our manufacturing division, the Engineering division, and depot stores! Phew!
So today all I'm doing is messing about on the internet, fixing my bike, playing music and later, will watch the third part of the Children of Dune mini series. I might just end up reviewing our new legal compliance document his afternoon though....(I didn't).
I was invited to the launch of the 10:10 campaign - annoyed now that I didn't go, however I was so tired I could barley stay upright. http://bit.ly/yRO2Z I haven't even been to the Climate Camp on Blackheath yet. Where's that old fire gone!?!
I'll tell you where that old fire's gone - ground down in endless paperwork. Being a poacher turned gamekeeper, I still keep feeling that the best approach is confontation: climbing fences, occupying sites, putting up banners & doing pr...ess interviews. Now I'm on the other side....it's hard work to get a large company to change its culture from 'don't care' to world class. I'd say I'm about half way there now though.

Drax protesters:
these men and women have already done their community service as far as I'm concerned

Monday, August 31, 2009

Could The President Take Over The Internet?

Climate Camp - just up the road

I am pleased that this Camp has arrived, just up the road...well no more than 2 or 3 miles away. I'll be heading through there tomorrow..and may take look around if I have time.


From the New Shopper:
Lewisham Mayor Sir Steve Bullock said that, though he had sympathy for the protestors’ cause, he did not agree with the camp.
He said: “I don’t think that a camp like this, which was unannounced and uninvited in an area which is a beautiful part of London is the right way to do this.
“My concern is that it actually distracts from the practical job of getting up and doing something about climate change.”


I would now like to hear from Sir Steve Bollock - how exactly does this camp "distract from the practical job of getting up and doing something about climate change" - and what exactly does he think is the "practical job of doing something about climate change?" Encouraging less use of plastic bags, or turning the lights off in his office when he goes home? Pissing in the wind I call it, Mr Bollock! Sorry, I mean Sir Bollock! How about challenging government and private enterprise to do something meaningful to avoid imminent crisis and possibly the end of civilisation. No - we'll piss about making party political points, looking down our noses at the concerned men and women who do care, that actually do get off their arses to try to achieve change, and who do make a protest against the continuing inaction. Would Sir Steve prefer we sat at home and watched the imminent apocolypse on our tvs? Would Sir Steve prefer that we worry about the break-up of Oasis? Sir steve is inent on crawling up the arses of those influential people who caused the problems in the first place, and who most benfit from raping the earth and stealing from future generations, and the developing world.

Would Sir Bollock even be talking about climate change without protesters like this; without camps like this?

As for Blackheath being a beautiful place, what does he think causes most damage to this "beautiful part of London"? Would it be the climate camp, or would it be the thousands of lorries, buses and cars that come thundering across Blackheath in the name of capitalism, every day?