Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Ice Palaces

Ah bejabers.
We're surrounded by ice palaces, dirty ones at that. I went to the supermarket and every sixth parking space was taken up by the mound of snow that had been shovelled or ploughed there and that had then frozen solid. Soon, there'll be a troglodyte city and then sometime in June when they melt, the creatures will have to return to the north.

The media have coined the term 'Snowmageddon' to describe our recent weather. This seems somewhat overstated. Elsewhere in Canada, they have weeks or months of snow without making too much fuss about it.
A small town in the east of BC has lost eight young men in a series of avalanches. The men were on snowmobiles. Thus, another subject of discussion is whether they were properly equipped and trained. It seems they were and in any case, four of them died trying to dig out the first four who were overtaken by the snowslide.
This morning on TV, the distressed father of one of the men talked about the accident, and that was enough. Trained or not trained, I can certainly imagine one of my sons doing something this foolhardy. I could imagine myself being that distraught parent.

I read in New Scientist that the average European will generate 900 tommes of carbon in their lifetime. The average North American will generate 1,500 tonnes. So, by moving here, have I upped the ante, or do I bring my European carbon parsimony to bear?

Carbongeddon perhaps?

Monday, 29 December 2008


Funny old weather we're having. Rain was beating down when we woke up this morning, it had stopped by the time I took off for work, but it took me an hour to get there. I was yomping through snow piles that were over my knees, and THAT is heavy going. Kevin came and picked me up at lunchtime, and discovered that, though the main roads have been cleared, the median had not, so it was a bobsleigh ride to get across the highway.

I'm learning.

Whilst I was talking to my sister on Skype, suddenly, the starlings that had been crowding the bare tree outside the window in a Hitchcock-esque fashion, all disappeared and driving snow was being blown in a circular motion that meant it was horizontal and vertical at the same time.

After work, I went to check out the sales. So did everyone else. I don't play nicely with crowds, so I cut and ran. Well, again, more bobsleighed back home.

Although, as oft stated, we don't see many ads on TV, we do get the ones that come with the morning news. And by news I mean bunch of so-called TV presenters larking about. I should up my game. But anyway - there is one that I feel does the proverbial foot-shooting.
Kid goes into a shop because he sees a sign saying, 'Help Wanted.'
'Shouldn't you be out playing hockey?' asks the shopkeeper,
'Um...(very overdone winsome look from kid)...that's what I'm trying to do.' So the ad wants you to contribute to some fund that gives money to families so that the kids can play sports instead of bloody earning the money to do so. Feck off! That's EXACTLY what kids should be doing - going out and earning the dosh so that they've then earned the right to play.

There's little new on TV right now, so we're catching up on films we recorded previously. Last night we watched 'Untraceable' with Diane Lane and...oh some other people. It was bloody well done. I didn't think I was going to enjoy this suspense movie, but I was in.

Tonight though, we saw 'You Don't Mess with the Zohan.' Adam Sandler as an Israeli counter-terrorist wanting to be a hairdresser. The opening sequence wasn't too hopeful, but thereafter, well, all I will say is, make sure your bladder is empty before watching.
I laughed so hard and so long I cried. I'm more of a Stiller than Sandler fan usually, but this was no holds barred laugh-fest, and if that seems tasteless in view of the recent Hamas attack on Israel, that's kinda one of the points he's making.
The Hezbollah Helpline had me rolling helplessly.


Saturday, 27 December 2008

Christmas - dritten Tag

So. Boxing Day. How did it end? Not so well, and then well.

First off, around 23.30 - we notice that the neighbour has two cars parked bang outside our garage door, thus no egress should I need to, and this means also that they are in front of two other cars in the visitor parking - who could have to move and in a firelane.
I went out and took pictures. Then I went back in my garage and honked the car horn until FINALLY the neighbour comes out. Two young men scurry out and move the cars, but in a way that suggests they are waiting for me to move my car and will then re-park as they were.
'It's a fire lane,' say I. He responds with a stream of one of the Chineses. 'What's the point of that?' say I, 'it's a fire lane.' More Chineseish. I wait. Finally the younger men move off and park their vehicles elsewhere.
But before I've made it up the stairs, one is back, so I go down again and re-state that it's a fire lane and therefore an offence to park there. More Chinese. But I stand my ground, taking another picture of the re-parker, which prompts one of them to take a picture of me (not committing any offence) on a phone-cam.
They go in and close their garage.

When I did get to bed however, Kevlar (I'm banned from calling him this, ergo, I'll just do it the once and never more) had got the Gavin and Stacey Christmas Special set up on the TV in the bedroom, so all was well that ended well.

Today - well, the high spot of the day, bearing in mind my supreme sports' filter, was meeting the cup of His Excellency the Earl Grey. (Canadian Football League Grey Cup for anyone who doesn't know what it is.)
Cool huh?

Friday, 26 December 2008

Boxing Day

...and we`re told, the last day of snow - well, until New Year`s Day is the current forecast. We`re supposed to just be getting freezing rain for a while now. Driving back from Surrey, the conditions were worse than on Christmas Eve, but there seemed to be fewer loony drivers on the road.

So now we have the after-Chrimbo period of leftovers. Like so many people, I love Christmas dinner leftovers, yum, yum, yummers. I could do with eating a little less for a while too, December seems to have been an entire month of scarfing up calories. But it was good.

Since it is also traditional to watch movies over the Christmas period, we did just that this avo. Not an old black and white, but a cracker nonetheless. I will, however, qualify that.
The film we watched was `Factory Girl`about the relationship between Edie Sedgewick and Andy Warhol. Both Sienna Miller and Guy Pearce gave outstanding performances and I really enjoy watching films and plays where the acting is so good you are seeing the art of it instead of having to overlook it and follow a story. Story - there isn`t much, but this is a thoughtful, well-made film, that showed subtlety of character and it engaged us both.

And over Christmas so far, two greats died. Eartha Kitt, seriously, has there ever been anyone with such a sexy voice as Eartha? I'm sure we can look forward to a few plays of 'Santa Baby' in the next few days.
Then Harold Pinter, brilliant playwright, director and actor. A dramatist who gave us those very plays that provoke thought and reflection, so another loss to British theatre.

The most twinkly news story today however, was that the CIA have discovered a successful strategy for getting information from Afghan Warlords - they have been supplying them with viagra. I'm all for creative tactics - well done lads and lasses, it's just....do you think you should have maybe kept your secret weapons secret?

Thursday, 25 December 2008


It was divine to wake up on Christmas morning and see snow falling from the sky - I find it mesmerising.

It was hellish driving in the snow on Christmas Eve, to get to Kevin's parents in Surrey, even though he was doing the driving.
Church services were cancelled and I had to settle for watching Midnight Mass on TV - but I fell asleep anyway.

Laurence got to learn a new, Canadian skill and ritual, shovelling snow. There was a lot of it about.

Kevin cooked a phenomenal Christmas meal and I...well I lazed about doing sweet fanny adams except eating and drinking. So - what I do best then.
More snow tomorrow apparently, but then some rain.

God bless and to all a very, merry Christmas!

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

The Ads

Christmas TV ads.
For the past couple of years, we seem to have had a surfeit of ads all with different versions of 'Let it snow'. I haven't been aware of them this year, but then we manage to avoid almost all ads by not watching TV in real time. Thus, we skip a lot.

But I was drawn to watch a whole bundle of this year's British Christmas ads because there was an article about them on the Guardian's website. They did mostly seem a bit shabby.
I expected to see Jamie doing something perky with a turkey, but no go.
The Asda one irritated me because, well, I suppose it plays to its own audience and that Perry Como song, 'It's beginning to seem a lot like Christmas,' makes me want to puke right away.

Tesco, trotting out Des O'Connor seem not to have noticed that Desie was always naff even when he was 'young'. So that's a miss.
The Morrisons one was.... half baked. Good snow mileage, but then it all goes Pete Tong.
Iceland - hohum. Jason Donavon, ok, slightly interesting, especially since he seems to have had his hairline restored, but the two chavvie women annoying him are, really, just annoying.
But I have to say, despite the snarky comments of the journo, I rather liked the Co-op ones. They seemed snappy, to the point, and really rather GOT the point I thought.
'I'll give it foive,' as some person used to say on some old pop show back in the 60s. I think it was called, 'Hit or Miss.'

Meanwhile, we wait for more snow. 'Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow..'
Sadly, it looks as though it might well interfere with the one thing which actually makes it Christmas for me and other practitioners of the vampire faith, Midnight Mass.
There might be snow, but without the baby, there's not much point to the bathwater, if you get my drift.

Monday, 22 December 2008

Driving Snow

The snow finally stopped falling during the course of the morning. It is about 50cms deep.

Right. I generally think of myself as a damned fine driver, however this is based on mainly European criteria. I am really rather a calm driver, am proud of my cornering, road placement, smooth gear changing and judgement of stopping distances in all weather conditions. I also never roll back on hills, being able to easily find the biting point of the clutch.
None of this would impress another Brit, because you have to be able to do all of these things before you can pass your driving test. They don't impress Canadians either because they just don't care about driving skills.

I was, however, suitably awed by Kevin's driving skills this morning, and ones I don't have.
Having grown up largely in Ontario, he knows how to drive in big snow, so when it looked as though we would be unable to even get out of our garage, and down the street car after car was just spinning its wheels, unable to move, I was expecting us to have to walk. Fine for me, a little further for him.

But in fact, in true H2G2 (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) form, a towel was pressed into use under the tyres and some fancy gear changing, steering wheel work and generally getting the car to do things I never even knew it could do, soon got us moving. Well, maybe 'soon' might be an exaggeration, but we did get moving, and faster than anyone else.

I was impressed, dead impressed. Not just a tad, not just a touche, seriously, deeply, impressed.

At work, I discussed this amazing feat with a colleague - another Brit. Somehow, we got to discussing the different types of snow plough we have back home. Erm...pardon? Snow ploughs?
'Oh yes,' said my friend, 'you know the big ones with the double plough?' Erm...not really, no. He had lived in the north of England, in Yorkshire.

In Pompey, what we usually got was a truck with a lad sitting in the back on a pile of sand, strewing it by hand. I mean, fair do's, Pompey City Council normally managed to get the roads sanded ahead of any hint of ice, but I realised I'd never even seen a snow plough in England.

I guess that's why they call us 'Soft Southerners' oop north.

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Snow on Cedars

This is what I signed up for, big snow.
Last night it was blizzard-like as we drove through it back from our friend's house.
Kev had to go out to collect his brother from the airport and although there was much snow in Toronto, his plane was held up circling Vancouver, then on the runway waiting to get to the gate.

It almost feels Christmassy.

The night before last, a woman sleeping in a supermarket trolley in Vancouver set fire to herself and died. Emergency services didn't respond quickly because it was reported as a garbage can fire.
Last night there were nine people sleeping in our church.

When we woke up, the snow lay deep and thick and even, but as I drove to church, it started falling and has been doing so ever since.
It`s fabulous and deadly.
The weather forecast has changed to `non-stop snow, well, except Monday`. We`ll see.

I leave you with a Christmas poem by the excellent Scots poet Carol Ann Duffy, as published in the Guardian this past week. Illustrations are by the equally wonderful Posy Simmonds.
I give you - Mrs. Scrooge.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Response and Responsibility

Up at Whistler - snowy Vancouver-side playground of the wealthy, a tower holding up the hawsers from which dangles the gondola, or ski-lift, was 'ice-jacked' and broke in half, leaving the occupants of said gondola suspended precariously in mid-air for three and a half hours. Poor buggers. I'd have had to have pee-ed out of the window during that time.
The branch of the mob known as Vanoc are wringing their hands in dismay. What will people think? How will they ever trust the ski-lifts at Whistler?

Well, let's think. The Chinese government have an appalling human rights record, something that's so swift to drop from anyone's mouth when China is mentioned that it's almost a cliché. They are polluting the planet as though there were no tomorrow - which in fact, should they continue, there won't be. They have bullied Tibet mercilessly, supplied arms to Darfur and in spite of communism, tolerate miserable poverty in their country. BUT IT DIDN'T STOP THE OLYMPICS. So I don't think there's too much to worry about.

In Britain, town halls are struggling with increased demand for their services, one of which is housing. Yes, in Britain, the city or town is responsible for housing those who cannot afford to own or rent privately. In line with the Social Contract, those who deign to govern and take on that privilege, also take on certain duties.
Here, by contrast, no-one is responsible. Rights without responsibility.
There is a new mayor in Vancouver, and a large part of his campaign was fought on the promise to house the homeless.
Clearly this is something that worries Vancouverites. So what does Mayor Robertson do as soon as he assumes power? Why asks the churches to open their doors at night. Yes, I think this comes under the label of abrogation of the social contract, and I know what you're thinking, surely I meant to say, 'establishments where faith is practised'? Did he not ask the mosques, temples, synagogues and so on ? Nope. Just the churches.

Now, you could indeed argue that Christians have a responsibility towards the poor and homeless, and this is no doubt why some of them open their doors, but churches here, even more than back home, have limited resources, severely limited; to heat rooms up outside of normal hours puts a very real strain on that church, and to have the church staffed overnight is relying on overstretched volunteers.
In Richmond, there is ONE church that opens its doors, let's re-state that, ONE faith establishment, the one I attend. And that means there is literally only ONE place that homeless women and children can go to, because the Sally-Anne offers shelter, but only to men.

Why do the cities not have responsibility for this? Beats me.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Snow Way

Today was a rare day, a snow-all-day day. Oh yes. On top of the most wonderful snow we already had, it started snowing late yesterday evening. It was snowing when we woke up and it went on all day, although it has stopped now. There is something unbelievably magical about walking in deep snow whilst it is also falling from the sky.
At work, we found a squirrel stuffed into a chickadee nesting box, clearly not a claustrophobe.

Yesterday, Nicole Kidman was under fire from critics for blowing into a didgeridoo. I'm not even sure why anyone can claim it's her fault, since the TV show she was appearing on staged the whole sorry spectacle.
The only thing to do in these circumstances in my opinion is to go out and get preggers straight away, to show other women that it's a load of almost literal, bollocks. What does surprise me however, is that both Cruise and Kidman have managed to have children since splitting up. So what was all that adoption stuff about then?

In the cold weather, it is useful to know that it turns out to be a myth that most of our bodyheat is lost through the noddle. I had wondered about this I must say. I am no hat wearer, but I am quite a warm person. Now at least I don't feel as though I should wear a hat.

Anyway, the real snow - apparently - hasn't yet hit, seems we're getting more on Sunday.

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Red Sky

Apparently the entire country is below freezing and here in the west we have another snow warning. Driving isn't much fun right now, but it's right proper pretty.

I've eaten my curry, now I'm waiting for my eggnog whilst watching an old and yet unseen by me, episode of The Vicar of Dibley, who seems to have a date with Sir Guy of Gisborne. A totally normal Brit-Canuck December evening.

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Our Mountains

Saturday, 13 December 2008


Then later...it did indeed snow.


My dreams of snow stayed as just dreams, but at least it is still cold, so there is hope. The mountains looked so close today, it was so clear.

On the TV here, after every break, there is a warning if the programme may contain nudity, sexuality, bad language or a bit of ultraviolence. Oh, and when 'Bones' is on, there is a warning that it 'may contain graphic forensic details.' I should bloody well hope so.
However, this becomes annoying. Personally I feel the warnings should be more appropriate. How about,
'Viewers should be advised that this programme contains scenes with incorrect use of language, there may be some adjectives used instead of adverbs, prepositions and articles may be left out and metaphors may be wrongly applied. There is also sexist language which some viewers may notice and find offensive.'

The spin-off from the British series, 'Life on Mars', 'Ashes to Ashes', is, in my opinion, even better than LoM, which was brilliant. There is a sexual tension between the two main characters, that was not possible in the original, and being that little bit further forward in time, the exploration of other issues, such as early AIDS cases and the changing attitudes towards women and gay and black people. Also, the music of the eighties was just stonking and so the soundtrack is spectacular too.
On the episode we watched last night, the lads come out with a whole string of derogatory names for gay men.
'Ever wondered why the Inuit have so many words for snow?' asked DI Alex Drake (the character from the future.)
The lads look bemused,
'Eskimos,' explains the WPC.
'Because it's so important in their lives,' said DI Drake.
Great writing.

I notice in the back of New Scientist that there is a firm that will sell you nanotubes, should you need them. They also supply phase changing material. Well that takes care of that then. Should I ever need to remodulate my Heisenberg's Coils, I'll be sending them an e-mail, so problem solved.

Friday, 12 December 2008

Snowy Dreams

Well, we had a bit of snow this morning. Mostly it was sleet, then it would change back to snow, then sleet again. It ended the work day as sleet, but we're forecast snow for tonight, so here's hoping.

Here in 'Almost Vancouver' we are honoured to be able to have spent gazillions of tax dollars building the Olympic skating rink. This is known as the skating oval, which just sounds wrong, since the oval is where they play cricket, but whatevs, we live a confusing life.

Today, this magnificent structure was opened and the public were invited to...park several hundred metres away and go in to see it in all its unfinished glory. But the design looks spectacular and the roof is made from pine-beetle damaged wood, so it's all good.

'Lesbilicious', which boasts that it is 'the web's tastiest lesbian magazine', tells us that the UN is likely to be asked to vote on decriminalising homosexuality.
I had no idea it was a criminal offence, but apparently, 86 countries do in fact ban male homosexuality.
I'm proud to be European, because all 27 member states of the EU back the motion, however this also worried me because the last time I was paying attention, it seemed like there were only fifteen member states.
The US hasn't yet indicated its support. Hmmm. I'm sure their invitation just got lost in the post.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008


Ah, Costco, cheap as chips but nowhere near as big as a French hypermarket. I broke some kind of unwritten law there today. All around the place are people giving you small tasters of some new line in food items.
And it came to pass that I came upon an abandoned food-tasting station, but still with tasty snacks crying out,
'Eat me!'
So verily, I took a little cheese cracker and lifted the knife from the plate of cream cheese and was about to spread said cracker with said cheese when from nowhere (seemingly) popped up a small Chinese woman screaming, 'excuse me, excuse me, excuse me, excuse me, excuse me.'
She took the knife from my hand and like a ninja wielding some kind of special ninja weapon, she cleaned the blade in one swift movement of paper towel, whilst simultaneously ripping the minute cracker from my other hand and tossing it contemptuously into a nearby bin. From some nook or cranny appeared an enormous bottle of disinfectant which she used to render the knife beyond hygiene and into the realms of godliness and somehow it seemed to me that she spun the knife in the air as she stripped off her latex gloves and donned a new pair, although I may have imagined this manoeuvre.
By now, an amused gaggle of onlookers were making comments about how dare a mere mortal touch the food samples and chuckling.

Finally, the Chinese ninja took a new tiny cracker, spread it with cheese from the exact plate that had been sitting there exposed the whole time, and handed it to me, her face contorting into a Jack-o-Lantern smile and saying something along the lines of,
'Thank-you for trying our new cream cheese spread,' I think she may have bowed to me as well.
I raised my left eyebrow at her, hoping she'd understand the full meaning of it.

In most countries, you could say, 'Well, who do you get demonstrating food samples in Costco? Probably not brain surgeons,' but here, well, you could easily be receiving your tasty bite from a rocket scientist or a neurosurgeon, seriously, it keeps you humble.

Tuesday, 9 December 2008


I love my wellies. I do. They let me splash in puddles and paddle through ditches. They let me make excuses to escape the stuffy, overheated office.

I also love the shortest of days, the fast-falling twilight, the mist, the twinkle of early evening lights. It is surely enough in itself.

Yesterday evening, one of my friends read a short piece centred around 'La Pieta', Michelangelo's sculpture depicting the grief of Mary as she held Christ in her arms - as she held her dead son in her arms. That grief is so easily forgotten, so easily overlooked in the story, taken over by the fervour of followers and disciples.

I was amused to read that pupils studying maths and science in England are amongst the highest performers from a study of more than sixty countries. No, that wasn't what amused me, it was that said pupils were achieving more, but enjoying it less.
Oh. Dear.
Education is about education, not about being entertained.

Well, out of all the mess of Canadian politics over the past few weeks, it looks as though one of the parties - the Liberals, are about to get a strong, capable leader. Who thought that could happen?

Last night we saw the last ever episode of Boston Legal and wow, was it an amazing episode. Often, last episodes of great series turn out to be a disappointment, lame, but not this one. This episode exceeded all others and oh sister have there been some great, GREAT programmes. It will be sorely missed.

Monday, 8 December 2008

Dori and Dawn

I do have stuff to write about, but it can wait until tomorrow.

Tonight I just want to remember a woman I have never met, Dori Henderson who died today at the age, I think, of 49.

But her sister, Dawn, is a dear friend that I have known for forty years now and so I can grieve because I know how hard this has been for my friend and her family.
Dori was only diagnosed with cancer (quoting from her CaringBridge site) "...the week before Labor Day..." and I certainly remember Dawn first mentioning it to me in early September. It has been a swiftly progressing and aggressive illness, and I know through my friend Dawn, that Dori's family, her husband, her two children and of course, parents and siblings, have been devastated by the speed at which she was taken from them.

Dawn, I know you'll read this at some time, may God give you and your family the strength you need at this most dreadful time, and may you dear sister Rest in Peace.

Saturday, 6 December 2008


Whatever is occurring? Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, professional pillock and all round twonk, ballsed up already? Dear, oh dear, oh dear. No-one saw that coming. Much.

According to New Scientist, although they didn't mention us personally, have endorsed our choice of car last year. We couldn't cough up for a hybrid, nor did it tick the important 'hatchback' box for us, but it seems that the manual fuel-efficient small car is the best you can do for the environment - well, short of not having a car at all.

How green is green? Is applewhite as green as avocado? What does that even mean? No idea.
But...I have been agonising over whether to send physical Christmas cards, or should I go electronic?
I decided that I should aim for electronic, maybe for next year, but I am doing better than I was. Here, people don't seem to send cards to absolutely everyone they know the names of, so I am being MORE green than I was. Applewhite then.

In the season of the perpetual party, is it better to be an 'and guest' or a 'plus one'? Hmm? I'm thinking 'and guest' has more status. My friend, who wanted to attend a do and bring another friend, was annoyed at the 'and spouse' invite. I can't understand why she didn't just take the friend, but she had a point.

On the radio yesterday morning, they were playing that modern classic, 'Wonderwall'. Now, believe you me, I am no Oasis fan. I think they're barely human and not particularly talented, but when the DJ, let me say again, the DJ, whose job it is to...well, be a DJ and have a more extensive musical knowledge than the hoy palloy said to the other,'Wonderwall, that's what, by Oasis isn't it?' I had to just shake my head.

I'm so fed up of those fecking e-mails that keep coming round with some blethering old shite. Like, for example, the old 'Britain has dropped the Holocaust from the National Curriculum because the Muslims didn't believe it happened' crapola. Bullshit.
Another one keeps appearing, that we are supposed to send on to other Canadians, telling immigrants to feck off and go back home because some Hindus wanted to be able to sing the National Anthem in Hindu.
Well firstly, arseholes, the English language version is flagrantly sexist and needs to be updated, and secondly, don't send it to me, I am an immigrant.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Club Penguin

I am making virtually no preparations for Christmas, I'm going to England for two weeks in January, so I figure it'll all be done then. And yet....I seem to have a plethora of to-do lists - many Christmas-related. Still, I do like my lists, I find them very motivating.

I was up at 6 this morning, in order to drive Laurence into Vancouver. In spite of feeling like a real weed, because I have friends who don't get in from work until that time, I considered myself hard done-by to have to drag myself out of bed. Admittedly, that is easier to do on a Friday than any other weekday.
The compensation for this however, was that I left the house at 7 and was back by 7.35. Sweet. And on the way back, the sky was beginning to lighten. It's exciting watching two cities come to life.

This week has seen the start of a new programme at work. And it is a fairly new programme, so not tried and tested over many years. I play Mother Nature and have to prepare the Park for the onset of winter, whilst Jill Frost wants to go straight from summer to winter. The past two days, the programme has been really well received and it's nice to see the kids really enjoying it.

You know how in TV soaps, men often discover children they never knew they had? Well it turns out I have a child I never knew I had, Ryan. I have discovered Ryan because he has twice joined 'Club Penguin' and Club Penguin have e-mailed me, his mother, to activate his account. I feel bad. BUT....I'm a sucker for Penguins, so as long as he can remember either his password or who he sent the details to, he'll be able to 'get a penguin'.
This clearly differs from the old ads that told us to p-p-pick up a penguin, then lick the chocolate off and nosh it.

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Rum Ration

It's ironic. I'm dead jealous of the snow in the north of Britain today and yet...even were I there, it would take me hours to get to the nearest snowfall, whereas here, I could be standing in snow in about forty minutes. But I want it outside my front door, waaaahhh!!!

I was wondering about the naval rum ration today, since it became clear that a whole bottle of the stuff had mysteriously vanished. Well, not so mysteriously really, more a case of co-dependency, the eggnog has disappeared at the same time.
Anyhoo, got me wonderin'. The naval rum ration, which only stopped in 1970, was an eighth of a pint, ergo 2½ fluid ounces, so, turns out we've been consuming a supersized rum ration. The traditional naval ration was 50% proof though, so on that score, we're quite restrained.
Think we'll lay off it for a while even so.

I'm not sure if it's the time of year or my age, but dinner seems to be preoccupying me. Last night, I went out with people from work and had a really good turkey dinner. Tonight, we had Korma. Both yummers. It used to be all about the brekker, now - it's the dins. I wonder if there'll come a point when I start having dinner at lunchtime.

Wednesday, 3 December 2008


So, sorry, I got ahead of myself. The whole squabbling government thing isn't resolved. We don't have a coalition, we have the possibility of one, and now we also have the pathetic spectacle of our brave leader whining and stamping like a small boy and making us look like a bunch of dishonourable weenies on the international stage.

Another bunch who can just fuck off are the retarded part of the Anglican church who want to separate because they just don't get it. Jeez. Let them go. Pathetic bunch of tossers. We don't need bigots thank you very much.

Ah, December, month of hectic camaraderie and celebration of the birth of Christ.
On Saturday evening I mentioned to the people at our table that Sunday was the first in Advent. One couple looked at me blankly and then said,
'Oh, right, the kids' thing with the chocolates.'
'No, the REAL Advent,' I said, but I thought un-Christian thoughts.

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Light Fantastic

At the weekend, the fairly new laptop started having a severe case of indigestion. I couldn't do more than a couple of things before it would freeze up. The old clunker had to be pressed into service, resulting in a feeling of discomfort and a distinct lack of joy. Sheesh, how can I be so dependent on a machine?

Joy was restored, however, by the final half-series of Boston Legal. Oh what a treat it is. I can't wait for the two-hour last ever ep next Monday.
Denny Crane.

People who go on holiday to Thailand, against government advice - what can you say really? Well, I know, but after a while you've gotta think that the government has to send in the troops and get its people out. Lucky that the situation looks to be over, because our government has been too busy fighting amongst themselves. Lucky that's over now too, and we are to have a coalition. And of course the abysmal anti-French prejudice is affecting people's brains, because the coalition HAS to involve the Bloc Québécois, and there are those who think this is tantamount to being in league with the devil.

I have put up Christmas decs. I'm trying to be less...well, me I suppose. Minimalist maybe. But the lights that we can get now, the low energy, LEDs, white and blue, feed into that. I can't do the coloured lights, but we do have lights.