The leaves that are green

January 29, 2006
Time hurries on…

[Pic: boredofjam circa 1990]


January 29, 2006

Crap, I just remembered, I’ve got to pay off IBM by Tuesday.

Anyone know where my cheque book and piggybanks are?

May I recommend?

January 29, 2006

Anything Anthony Bourdain can chuck at you?

The git can:
– cook well (I’ve eaten at Les Halles in NYC, possibly the best meal I’ve ever – ever – had).
– write well (his books “Kitchen Confidential” and “A Cooks Tour” are fab).
– do TV well (although he’ll tell you he doesn’t like doing it)

And – AND – these days he gets to travel the world and eat for a living!


The Mayor’s Night Out

January 28, 2006

What a fab start to the weekend!

First of all, we get the tantalising glimpse of a maybe-flurry of snow during the afternoon. At that exact same time I am sat at my desk in Colchester with my team manager working on a particularly troublesome support call. All of a sudden in the bottom right hand corner of my screen arrive mails from all my friends saying things like

– YAY! SNOW!!!
– I think i saw SNOW!
– SNOWY!!!!!!

as, like I said, I am sat at my desk with my Team Manager. Luckily I think I distracted her by pointing out of the window and saying “Ooh… er.. snow.”

Second, I had an excellent journey home from work. The traffic was my friend, oh yes. I did it in half an hour. Unbelievable for a Friday night.

Third, my unc and his lovely wife picked me up to take me out for a curry at the “Back” Passage to India and then to see Ben Elton at the Ipswich Regent. The curry was wonderful (as ever) and Ben Elton was a revelation. It’s been ten years since he last toured and whilst he is now rather grey of hair, he’s still got it. The ranting is still as funny as he ever was (maybe more so?) and the constant stream of words and gags come fast. If you get a chance to see him on the tour, then do it. Or wait for the DVD. Your choice.

Once Ben had finished talking at us for two hours, it was time to wander off to find Kev in Pals. I’ve not been out in town for, weeeellll, about two years. And predictably, Pals has not changed (although the prices have gone up) (unbelieveable I know).

And I was having a lovely time. Until about 1am. When the ex- turned up. Oh yes. Lots of other places she could go, but there she was. So we talked for about 90 seconds, my continued insistence on breathing upset her and she ran off (persued by some gimpy looking kid with really really bad face moss). She’s lost a lot more weight. Skinny as you like. Still, there was no way I was staying out whilst she was in the same place, style cramped, the threat of some gimpy kid with a silly beard trying to beat me up, etc etc, so I left and came home.

So, an evening that went from the sublime to the ridiculous.


January 26, 2006

I get up.
I work.
I come home.
I fix a computer.
I go to bed.

Tell me something interesting. Hopefully, next week will pick up…

When drunk:

January 23, 2006

Do not allow yourself to be uploaded to (although I’m currently an 8.3).
Still, if you want to vote for me, go look me up (I’d give you the link but am scared Buz will keep clicking on “1”…)

Spain, The rain in

January 19, 2006

Well, it chucked it down. Absolutely. Buckets of it. Rain. From the moment we touched down (and possibly earlier) Spain experienced a weekend of more rain that it had seen in about four years.

And I pick that weekend to visit.

Ho hum. Supposedly, Fiona has a mountain range just outside her appartment. The Sierra Blanca. It’s meant to be beautiful and dangerous (a lot like me, obviously), but it was simply obscured by cloud (again, a lot like me).

Still, the weather did decide to be a bit fair and stop raining for a couple of hours on Saturday night when we visited Marbella and spent the night eating tapas and drinking small beers. Very excellent it was too.

The really cool thing about Spain is that, unlike the UK, it has banned smoking in public places. You wanna smoke? Sorry Enrique, out in the street you go, amigo. So the night went on undisturbed by the filth that is secondary smoke. This meant that I was able to taste my food untainted by cigarette smoke. And very excellent it was too.

So can someone please explain to me how it is that Spain can ban smoking with apparantly no particluar problems, but our own “must please all of the people all of the time” Government can’t get its finger out of the arse of the tobacco companies’ collective arses for long enough to pass a law? Bunch of second-rate cowboys.

I could go on, but fear I might irritate one of my emphysemic-smoker readers. I think I’ve nailed my colours to the flagpole.

Back in Spain, and Sunday morning was sunny. Right up til lunchtime when the clouds came back in and the rain started again. And that’s when something leaked and the power went out. Pow! No more electric today folks, bad luck.

So I got in a cab (luckily the payphone was still working) and made my way back to Malaga airport.

Next time, I’ll go in the summer. I might be guaranteed some frickin’ sun that way…

Put yourself on the market

January 18, 2006

A little game I had The Collective play yesterday to while away the workaday grind.

Imagine, I said, that an estate agent was going to be putting you on the market. What would they write about you? Everyone eventually wrote theirs (except for Buz, whose entry I wrote to “kick things off”) including neo-Surrealist Caroline. Here are the results…

Used to be a very sought after area (yay me!) but a little worn of late, with that settled, ‘lived-in’ look. Structurally mostly sound with few areas of concern. Major work to the substructure in the past year has not been patched as well as it might, but doesn’t detract from the charm of the property. Comes with small sub property suitable as granny attractor.Value: probably negative equity, but in time should come back onto the market with gusto – an investment opportunity.

A ramshackle, run-down old heap. Faces monitor. Could do with a bit of shoring up. Tendency to lean over to one side.Grumpy aspect. Some tidying required. Not much up top. Lounges. Reception occasionally warm. Subsidence risk. Extension approved and in process of delivery. Value: £7/4s/3d – Jam jars can be used in part exchange.

Medium sized 1970’s built property with features of the period. Unusually thin thatched roof needs some attention. Some evidence of subsidence in the centre section of the property, with the overly thick walls probably not helping. Gloomy outlook in general is offset somewhat by large dining room. Mains Gas. Mostly vacant possession. Interesting door knocker.

Lock up garage in block, red door. Fits one family sized hatchback, a dusty workbench and any number of old brushes, a hoe, a broken spade and, of course, a couple of fork handles (yes indeedy)Electronic door opened only by remote control. Remote control has been lost. P.O.A.

Somewhat shabby 1970s building. External areas require attention, foliage over-running. Internal fixtures of dubious quality. Front paunch added recently. Quick sale needed.

Caveat Emptor.

Feel free to treat your chums to this insightful passtime. You may discover what they actually think of themselves.

Tech nonsense

January 18, 2006

Why are people suddenly fascinated with “mobile television”, ie the ability to watch telly on your mobile phone.
I assume that the telecos will be claiming that they’ll have to stream the whole thing over the telephone network and charge chunky amounts of cash to anyone foolish enough to watch?

Because I thought that the TV signal was floating around in the air around us. Am I wrong in thinking that all you need is an aerial and a portable telly? (Uncle Clive had one of these in 1983 (I saw it on Blue Peter). And there are already tellys you can put in your pocket (I’ve seen those in Dixons) so as far as I can tell we’re not talking giant leap here, yet it’s all “the news” can talk about.) And if you’re not connected to a fixed aerial you don’t need a license (watch that little loophole get plugged asap) so why-oh-why the audacity to make people pay for something that is essentially free (great business model though, wish I’d thought of it).

Even if you wanted to watch the current slab of kwality digital channels (and who wouldn’t?), the rate at which tech is miniaturising, the kit needed to deal with it should be small enough to be “portable” at any moment. In fact it probably already is, it’s just that we won’t get to see it for another few years.

My main point is this, though: Accidents are caused everyday when people text or make mobile calls when driving. Does this stupid country need yet another excuse to focus solely on their mobiles rather than on what they’re actually doing?



January 16, 2006

Gollum says “What has it got in its pockets?”.
The horrible goblin attacks you.
With one well placed blow the horrible goblin cleaves your skull.
You are dead.
You have mastered 12.5% of this adventure.

BASTARD GAME. After playing it for more than 20 years I still can’t complete the bloody thing.