Wednesday, 31 December 2008

NYE in BS5.

New Year's Eve here in BS5, and everywhere of course, and probably 2009 already in Australia!

I am not doing a review of the year here or anything like that, but with all its challenges, 2008 comes out of the wash as: Fair to Middling. Could have been better, could have been a good deal worse, and I remain thankful for a great deal of it.

Weddings, friends, happy journeys, cooking, blogging, sleeping, church-going, US Election watching, new blog friends, old friends, good friends, candles given, introspection on unemployment, flip-flop toothpaste, days in Ireland, great dog walks with T and Q.

All of these things are fine 2008 occurrences which I was lucky to enjoy.

Here we are under the virtual mistletoe.

A happy new year!

The Structure Bus.

I do enjoy this laundry of days between Christmas and New Year. All week long I have had no idea what day it is, and all my usual 'signposts' for the week are awry: on Sunday I remained with my folks and missed church here in BS5, so that gave no clue to the day; on Monday it felt like Saturday because I met several pals in The Rhubarb; Tuesday (which may or may not be today) was completely confusing because I made Roast pork (a Sunday feel, therefore), and now on Wednesday (I think?) I am changing my bed sheets, which I usually indulge in on a Thursday.

I think the solution is to cease caring which day of the week it is and just enjoy the moment until the 'structure' bus comes along and I can flag it down and take a single to normality.

You can't go wrong with a post that demands a picture of a good bus. And let's face it, this one is a cracker, with great ears!

Tuesday, 30 December 2008

30 year secrets

I am looking forward to this show today at 11 on Radio 4 or maybe later on The I Player, depending how the morning unfolds.

It's a show that gets a sneak preview at Government/Cabinet papers released under the 30 year rule. I wonder if they will happen upon that time in late 1978 when my Mum gave me a right bollocking for seeing if a coffee cup would survive a plummet from my bedroom window, intact like my action man (who in fairness had the advantage of a parachute).

It's still a bit of a memory here.

Incidentally, my action man was quite a hard chap and I lobbed him out of trees, windows and even the car once; he met his end in covert action behind enemy lines (well in the lounge) when he was eaten by our Great Dane.


Family tiff....?

I woke at 5 today and caught that pleasant transition from the world service into Radio 4; when I catch this pleasant wave into the start of the day I listen until PFTD at 5.45, and occasionally beyond that into Farming Today. When I had finished today I went back to sleep (unusually) and dreams of shared green tea.

Anyhow, as I listened across the hour today, the same theme came up three times and then in a most welcome comment on a previous post, the thought was echoed again by an elegant Parisian Blogger of my slight acquaintance .

Lots of people seem to view Christmas as a sort of 'Buy One Get One Free' argument promotion with a guaranteed spat in those few days that has been boiling up all year! I have to say my Christmas was (and ever is) utterly free of such things; time with my family is a few days entirely devoid of a cross word or a falling out! I mean I am very happy back in BS5 today, and I am happy with guests in my own house, but all my Christmas days were fine and dandy, and I could have stayed many more without incident or argument. Time to count those blessings again, I think.

Without a real jot of relevance to the post, this is my bed, wherein the radio listening hour takes place (yes, it's another Christmas camera pic).

Monday, 29 December 2008


As you may know, over Christmas I acquired my brother's laptop by default as he now has a Macbook Pro.

This means I can join the network age and Blog/surf downstairs, away from the fixed PC conection on the first floor. With a large slice of help from Walshy who tweaked my router for me, whilst sat with his mother in law 200 miles away, I am now blogging in the lounge. I am spodding along at 4.8 meg a sec.


BS5 Blockbuster.

Today after a little bit of catch up shopping, and some house prep' prior to the arrival of guests, I have been messing about with my new digital camera. Of course being a chap, I am choosing to ignore the instruction manual and figure it out myself. I have a standard memory card that came with it, but a larger one that I left back at my folks' house (sensibly).

Here is my first new video from my Christmas Camera.

The quality and length should improve.
(PS: Cary Grant (a Bristol lad) was round at the time reading from his lines in 'I was a Wartime Bride')

Christmas quiz

My Blog pal FFF filled in this Christmas meme on her blog and passed it to me. As I am no longer a small baby and have reverted to full gangly size (see previous post), I am able to complete this quiz:

(I went there so 7 on that theme)
1. Wrap
2. Iron
3. Laundry
4. Prep the house to be tidy on my return
5. Turn the hot water off
6. Pack Clarke
7. Eat all the perishables in the fridge
1. Blogging
2. Moving stuff for my Vicar
3. Setting up desks and PCs as above
4. Not going for a run
5. Reading all I can about Barack Obama
6. Considering Green Tea
7. Straightening my lined up ties
1. Fly
2. Worry (thankfully)
3. Have a lie in
4. Enjoy a double bed
5. Go to bed early
6. Drink decent Guinness
7. That's it
1. Peace in BS5
2. Happiness to all
3. Peachy job
4. To be thankful
5. To find something worthwhile to do in 2009
6. A healthy 2009
7. A happy 2009
1. Where are the tree lights?
2. I'll do the shopping in one hit
3. Let's go for a pint
4. Who is *that* card from?
5. I don't want or need anything
6. Thank you!
7. Let's remember what it's all about?
1. Jonathan Sachs
2. Victor Borga
3. Winsto'
4. JC
5. Mr Data
6. Sam Power
7. Erin O'Connor
1. Picallili
2. Potato Salad on Boxing Day
3. A little glass of fizz
4. Turkey
5. Cold Ham
6. Silverskin onions
7. Sprouts

Sunday, 28 December 2008

BS5 visits the early 70s

Back in Bristol after a GREAT Christmas with the folks. Unfortunately, I seem to have returned via a time machine, and here I am the smallest of three with my two older brothers. Right now in BS5 it's 1972, and I am nowhere near six feet four, and seem to be in little boots and a questionable outfit altogether. And I don't have my specs on!

Maybe I will wake up and be 36 again in the morning but until then, I have 15 times more space in my double bed than usual and I am waking up every two hours or so.


Saturday, 27 December 2008

Table for 9...

Here are two more pics from my Christmas camera; these are pictures of the ironing and table laying I did from 1.00 until 4.00 this morning in order to ease the busy Boxing Day. We had 9 for dinner today so it seemed only right to do my bit. I put on the radio, poured a beer and ironed a massive table cloth that would ordinarily be beyond me. As I went to bed at 4, my brother was stirring to wake at 5 to get about his day's work! When I woke again at 8, I made he and I bubble and squeak for brekker using the veggies and stuffing and roasties left over from Christmas Day! I then tried to get myself into a cardboard box that my brother reckoned was too small for my six feet four and a bit frame; he was right and I got stuck.

A very fine day today with constant delights and pleasant text messages.

Cold meats, salads and potato salad for dinner tonight - my absolute favourite meal of the year, and also a shared favourite meal, I discovered.

My pretty friend Helen is calling in here tomorrow on her way home from seeing her parents.

Happy, thankful days!

Friday, 26 December 2008

Christmas Shark

Right then, here's my first Blog post with a picture from my new camera! As you can see Clarke came away with me for Christmas and is on my bed here. I left him upstairs but then when I saw him today, someone (my mother, I think) had given him a Christmas cracker to look after.

A day of idle here after staying up dead late.


Today I am going to try to upload a pic from my new diggie camera! I just need to wait for something smart to come past that I can snap. Not too many bridges, space ships or car chases in rural Herefordshire of a Boxing Day, though - you might have to do with a picture of a fireplace - or even a picture of me!

N'eeeeag, Nee'oooog!

A very fine Christmas day indeed; off to bed now at 3.30 am, some great length of time after the unpleasant damnation of midnight last night, but quite after the delights of a fine family day. This is the 1st Christmas day in aeons when I did loads of table cloth ironing. Cooked and coped well later on though!

My brother will be getting up as I go to bed and he will accuse me of deviance for ironing late......

As I write, I can here the lryics: we'll call him Nate, if it's a boy.


Thursday, 25 December 2008

Christmas Stash.

A most smart Christmas stash here at BS5 (temporary relocated to the parental Blog).

The day started v.early this morning in church and then I came home, did a few chores, drank beer and went to bed until half seven.

A nice long morning of this and that and then on to the pressies. This year I received a new digital camera - top smart stuff and I can now take better pics for my Blog than I am able to do on my camera phone. I thought my camera would be the most exciting thing, but it was trumped by toothpaste!

Last time my brother came home from Manila, he bought along some flip-flop toothpaste which I was pretty excited about as it tasted very nice. My bro' clocked this fact and bought me a year's worth which I opened this morning! I wonder how many other 36 year old chaps are excited about Christmas toothpaste elsewhere in the world today? What a lucky little brother I am!

I can't d'l pic from my new camera without installing software on my Pa's Mac, so it shall have to wait awhile.

Midnight Sin!

Went to church just now, but it was not my local one, and frankly it was a nuts way to start Christmas Day; a service of sin and hectoring guilt and not a joyous word to be had. Bah humbug! The only nice part was sitting with my parents' neighbour who is rather lovely.

More joy in the morning but for now Happy Christmas from Blog BS5.

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Leonard Nimoy at No.1.

I quite like Britain's Christmas no. 1, and it always makes me think of The West Wing because I heard it there first as incidental music to some unfolding scene or other. It is no.1 because of I'm an X Factor get me out of here, a show I never ever tuned into. Anyhow, it's a nice enough ditty.


Had a strange dream early this morning - a career change and I became a Florist!

It was a nice business to get into as I dreamed, and seemed to be a successful one too.

I wonder what it means?

Monday, 22 December 2008

I do like Mondays.

It's Monday but once again it doesn't feel very Monday-ish. It does feel festive though, after a long Sunday of this and that. I had a pint after a long churchy day but the chap who had put about 15 million pounds into the juke box blasted the place with thrash metal.

I have done prety much all of my Christmas shopping but I have now wrapped it all and realised I have no present tags so I have to get some of thoe while I still remember whose present is whose, otherwise people will get stuff they don't really need.

If I wrote labels for my posts (a pointless exercise IMHO) it would be a label that said Tags.

Sunday, 21 December 2008

Fork Handles

A long day of Sunday church action with a morning breakfast gathering (washed up for England), a children's party (I called numbers on Chinese stand up Bingo), and then putting 196 candles into very high candle holders for a service later. All candles fatter than the candle holder holes, so I had to screw each one in to make them steady. Took ages, but at least I get to go back shortly and light them all, which will look smart.

God, I put in lots of hours today, dude - how are we doing on that Mercedes CLS we talked about? You know you want to.

The end of the day may call for a pint.

Soap Box BS5

Here's a thing that pisses me off!

'Happy Holidays!'


Why not say Happy Christmas and be done? Is it really that likely that this sentiment will offend Jews, Muslims, Sikhs or those of no faith at all? I mean JC was Jewish, so there's one tick in the box, and the other religious texts mention the nativity anyhow. Why not go with the flow for awhile and pander to those vast numbers who like Christmas rather than to the few who might not, and seem to hold the rest to ransom? Wankers! They should all 'Foucalt'

Normal chirpy blogging will now resume!


I am reading this at our carol service tonight (from verse 2 to the end). It's the first reading out of the gate and the church will be full so I am a touch nervous about it. Also, there's some reasonably tricky names towards the end so I shall practice it in the bath later, and again after lunch. It's a candlelit service so it's not quite the bright lights of a stage or anything.

Sunday morning before 7 as I write and I am gloriously ignorant of who won Strictly Come Dancing.

This picture is not my church but is apparently one in Iowa, in a place called Tripoli. All I know about Iowa is that James T Kirk was/will be born there!

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Not too bad?

Having cited other Blog readers for general spazdom of late, I offer you my own area (of many) of spaziness. I can't wrap pressies neatly at all, and my efforts often lack flare and grace. Here is the 2008 effort. At a cursory glance, and from a distance, it doesn't look too horrendous, and there are no rips or mangled corners.

I have a couple more to go but feel the need to stop for a bacon, lettuce and cheese sandwich now and a cup of Lord Lucan.


I cut my top lip shaving in the bath. It's a right bastard when that happens as it bleeds for ever, and then I always forget about it and get blood on my collar, towel, coffee cup or whatever. A lack of concentration here in BS5 today, and a painful nick. Still, at least I don't have to shave my legs or anything else; that's gotta be a chore (and my legs are long as you like). Perhaps I will grow a new year beard.

Un-relatedly: last night I heard this tune on the juke box, may favourite non-churchy Christmas theme !

Right - off to Sainsbury's - CHAOS!

Saturday larks

Today is the last big shopping day before Christmas. I wonder if people will go crazy and unleash the sort of shopping day the High St wants? I think not - a mediocre one, I reckon. I did all mine yesterday and it was a sea of sharpened elbows, dawdling people and indecisive masses.

It is also the final of Strictly Come Dancing. I stopped watching two weeks in; a perfectly harmless show and nothing against it but I could never tell who was the celeb' and who was the dancer as they all seemed unheard of to me. Anyhow, I won't be watching the event but will be looking out to see if it is fixed!

I have to wrap presies today, learn a reading for a carol service tomorrow and hopefully sneak in a pint at some point. And I think I will indulge in a little bit of rump steak for dinner. With broccoli! That means braving 'mental DAY' at J Sainsbury!

Friday, 19 December 2008

Acronym spaz

I have a reader who is a bit of a spaz at acronyms, so here's some easy testers to get started.

They start simply and get more complex towards the end. No.6 is my favourite.

4 FUBAR (rude)
5 FEJ (ruder)
6 FYYFF(even ruder)
7 SCART (spoddy)
8 ISDN (spoddier)
9 HYGOTN (Irish)

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Shuttle blogging

Quick call from NASA today, so I had to get the 36 bus from Bristol to California in order to help them out and fly the space shuttle back east across the USA! It's a right tricky bastard taking off with a space shuttle on your fuselage but I did okay.

Why they don't have their own people to do it is curious, but I got my bus fare and lunch thrown in. Here i am over the Mojave desert earlier today.

It's that kinda day in BS5!

Wow Christmas a week today!

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

A long bird.

Midnight approaches and it's been a right old caper of a day here in BS5 - non stop really with many a pleasure thrown in, and lots of good deeds done.

I did quite a lot of shifting and lifting helping my vicar move house, and during this task I wheeled stuff all over the postcode area and set some stuff up in her new office. I also had a late call to ask if I could nip back to my vicar's house (she had work, you see) and remove the gas connection on the oven, as the removal men were not registered to do so and had to be out by 5.30. Man, I'm a liability with anything mechanical so I called a Rhubarb pal and we got the deed done - one oven on a lorry in no time at all, and nice to help someone (delightful) out who was in a spot.

Fabulous dinner and then an evening to remember.

Best part of today? A rare sight in BS5 earlier, a fine long bird flew overhead as I was about my day. I'm no ornithologist but a very pretty and colourful thing it was too. I like long birds and hope it flies back soon.

More capers in the Street

Here in BS5 it has been another episode involving the wheeling of curious stuff down the street.

Last month I moved a table tennis table in two parts, and just before that I wheeled a piano the length of my street.

Today I moved an office chair from my house to our church. This chair has been living at my house for some years and was provided by Bag, with the unknown assistance of his previous employer, whence it came. Anyhow, the chair now lives in a new office in the church as part of my Vicar moving house, and I have spent much of the morning shifting stuff and setting it up on her behalf. I also had a look in a top smart pantechnicon parked at the Vicarage. It was massive and exciting.

Alarmingly, as I am a tall chap at some 1m 96 (or six-four and a bit in proper terms), I have been roped into to putting up the curtains in the office on Friday; I know more about particle physics than putting up curtains so it will be a tough call.

I am now going to have a bath and consider my evening plans.

Tuesday, 16 December 2008


Today, using my razor sharp wit, special-forces training and highly developed sense of investigative skill, I arrived at the fact that the shouty kids next door must surely break up for Christmas holidays very soon. This means that the regular 6.45-8.45 shouty routine will extend into a Leo Sayer (all dayer) of noise, door banging and swearing.

I may need to use one of the 19 green tea tea bags I have left in the house, apparently a natural source of calm and antioxidants but then again, Osama Bin Laden would have to move in next door before I was tempted to the green side.

All day noise and shouting might be a bit taxing on my vast levels of calm and tolerance, and in fairness I will be in and out of BS5 over the season anyhow. All that said, today's shouty hours were actually very positive for the first time....well, ever really. I only heard one exasperated 'FUCK!' and the rest was all happy singing led by Dad and races around the house full of giggles and delighted squeals. Maybe the Christmas spirit is upon no 55.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Understanding the oven.

I had roast lamb tonight and it was FANTASTIC. I am not really confident about lamb and don't understand its intricacies quite fully yet, but tonight I just relaxed, went with the flow, prepped it totally, relaxed and cooked it. I have not cooked it perfectly ever before but tonight was pretty near! All the accompanying stuff was straightforward and good but the lamb was just divine. Fell apart in the mouth and when washed down with some wine, it was truly excellent!

Almost a crime I suppose that it was me on my jack.

Monday roast.

Today I am cooking roast lamb. Didn't really fancy it on a Sunday so it will do just nicely today.

I think I encountered a space time continuum after I got out of bed as my morning just disappeared in moments. And very nice they all were too.

Monday is not feeling at all Mondayish here in BS5; I mean that's not a bad thing by any means as it has been a top day thus far.

In exciting developments beyond BS5, my friend Bag (an ex BS5er returned to the wastes of the north) is buying one of these this lunchtime!


This morning I was trying to find a picture of a woman called Cathy Kluckston; she is a Radio 4 newsreader with an interesting voice, and it's always fun to see your perception of how someone looks versus the reality. I typed her name into Google and the only page returned was Blog BS5 and a post in April 2008!

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Me, my shoes and George

So if you were reading my Blog in Nov' and saw this post, then you will appreciate BS5's Sunday trip abroad on false passport, false papers and Special Forces training to a press conference abroad.

Fair play to George for his reaction, but still a pair of shoes well deserved and well thrown. Check this out!

The Wanker! Bring on Barack!

Marble Arch.

My brother and his lovely other half are both retailers; he works for Tesco, she works for M&S. One of the M&S perks is that employees (and other halves) can stay in the Marks and Spencer executive apartment which is on top of Marble Arch above their flagship store! They are doing that this evening, and spending 24 hours 'doing' London, taking in the lights, the shopping and I suppose dinner. Marble Arch is sort of at the corner of Park Lane and Oxford St (I think).

Sounds a top lark to me, especially as they are only 35 minutes out by train!

Blog BS5 offers a similar perk whereby readers can stay in the rather chilly loft room of the house and take in the delights of Church Road, shopping metropolis of the postcode area.

Early predicition

Today the BBC has its annual TV show celebrating the success of British sport. It's a live show which is a review of the year with people doing silly things in a studio. There is a vote for Sports Personality of the year. I don't think it's fixed like Strictly Come Dancing because the whole vote is a public thing (but then again it is the BBC).

There's a perception that our boy Lewis will romp home after becoming a fast dude in a car but I reckon Rebecca Adlington might sneak it. She is pictured here and is a bit good in the pool, and bagged two gold medals and a world record, and no disrespect to Lewis H, but she did it all with just her own self, and not a 200mph car.

Now I am a gangly spaz on land and can trip over the flattest surface or fall off an escalator in any shopping mall you'd care to name, but I am not half bad in a swimming pool and can glide along quite speedily. I can't see diddly-squat as I have to remove my specs, but I could have been BS5: The Man From Atlantis.

Saturday, 13 December 2008

Supermarket report - could do better.

Well, my time in Sainsbury's just caught the start of mental hour and they seemed to be piling in in droves as I was at the till. I was rather delayed in my shopping today owing to extended and unwelcome 'dwell time' in clothing and shampoo (groceries dead easy).

I really dislike buying shampoo because it's so bloody complicated and there isn't an on-shelf product that just says 'Bloke Shampoo'; after about eight minutes of searching various Ph levels, volume styles and colour options (not required), I came away with shampoo and conditioner in separate bottles. I am looking forward to a bouncy look and a more manageable hair day. I am also excited that I am but three washes away from 'An all day salon capable look'. What a load of codswallop!

Clothing was no better. JS actually do a decent range of underwear and I needed some more so I had a gander but none to be had in the 32-34 waist range - pie eating chaps only by the look of the availability today.

I am considerably more excited about the leg of lamb I purchased for dinner tomorrow!

Mental Hour

I have to go to Sainsbury's today. What with this and that and some days at my folks' house, I have not been shopping in a little bit. If you have read this blog awhile, you will know my loathing of 'mental hour' at Sainsbury's, when the ditherers, dawdlers and the largely stupid kick in, and everyone who wants to chat rather than shop turns out.

Outside of December mental hour starts at about 11. During December and ever nearer to Christmas Saturday mental hour stretches to the point where it becomes mental day. We are not there quite yet so I am off out shortly before the lunacy is apparent.

I don't write lists when I shop, I think in 'meal occasions' and purchase to that end, but then because I don't eat bleach, soap, laundry powder or cling film/foil, these are always the things I forget. I am not going to write a list either; that is defeatist and close, close, close to the shopping habit of the mental-hour people!

This is not my local JS, it's the latte drinking eco' friendly, grass roofed, Guardian reading one in Greenwich.

Posts to follow if there is any retail drama.

BS5 in Space (again).

On Sunday afternoon when I have a quiet moment (doin' cool stuff Monday) I am going to launch my C.V into space to further my permanent job search.

I have purchased this rocket for the task and it is currently towering above the house in the back garden. I am not so bothered about the noise factor as next door are always noisy and won't notice, but I do have a mild concern that the thousands of gallons of escaping liquid-oxygen fuel exhaust will do the garden no good. Not that it is any horticultural highlight right now, mind you.

As with my last satellite launch, please advise if you would like send anything of your own into space (mother in law, kids, the dog, your boss....) Launching at about 2pm GMT.


Here in BS5 it's been a curious few days. I am awake at 3.40 in the morning reflecting on it. It is chucking it down with rain outside.

I did not get the Head of Retail job I interviewed for last week, and I was really disappointed at that. However, I had a great few days at my folks' house which was very happy indeed but took in a funeral and (frankly) rather an awkward last evening, though I came home on Friday morning perfectly happy. It was particularly nice to come back to my PC after a few days of Mac blogging; you know how weird Macs are (sorry, Alaina...)

Had a great Friday with a very fine afternoon in Clifton and strolling along the Downs, then caught up with the chaps and had a couple of small pints! A busy weekend follows and has the promise of some chat with my Vicar (curiously) about some rather well paid temping to start soon on behalf of a funding and project management role within our church. Also my brother flies home next week the 6677 miles to London. Beers with him will be tops.

And in the morning I am going to put my Christmas tree up, though I am a world class spaz when it comes to decorating it. This is definitely not it, when I am done it kinda looks like I just tipped the decorations box on to the tree. Actually...

All in all, I am pretty glad that I can count my blessings as they are many and full despite no permanent job as yet!

Thursday, 11 December 2008


Lots of curious but enjoyable things happened on Wednesday and I can't
really string them all together in a cogent post, but they covered pals, pleasure,
potential, planes, pensiveness, pooches and pints.

1 Nice emails from friends all over the place (including my pal F from
Chelts who is off on holiday to the USA)
2 Attended a funeral with my folks. It was a humanist service - no hymns, no
mention of the big man, but still a service of dignity and decency
3 Had a potter around the town where I grew up (not BS5) and just enjoyed
that. Tents and tent poles everywhere it seemed (!)
4 Had a phone-call from my Vicar offering me project management work with a
church project, short term and at a very decent hourly rate!
5 A couple of pints with my Dad and the chap next door in the evening (it had been his
mother's funeral)
6 Great dinner with the folks at home
7 My top pal Oopas texted me to say he had just landed at Stanstead Airport
and then watched Air Force 2 land right behind him. Cool!
8 A witty post about G-Dog, an American hound of my slight acquaintance
9 Rather fine chatter on google talk before bed.


Wednesday, 10 December 2008

A new hope....(Episode IV)

I am away from BS5 briefly and spending some time at my folks' house. Now then, when I am at my folks' house, certain things are off limits, owing to the fact that at 36 years old, I might not understand them. Namely:

Anything to do with my Dad's lawnmower
Anything to do with making up a fire in the fireplace
Emptying the a.machine of messages
Puting things away in the micro managed freezer space in the garage

However, today has seen progress!

I was given the heady responsibility of adding water from the kettle to the frozen-over birdbath so the birdeens could have a morning drink. I think I may add this supreme task to my CV. Said birdbath is pictured....I am doing his on a Mac (pants!) so it might come out as a sideways picture.

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Moral dilemma

This morning I took delivery of a small bicycle, clearly destined as a Christmas present for the shouty kids next door.The box is a bit like this one. Each morning for the entirety of the last three months the period from 6.45 - 8.00 has been littered with noise, swearing, shouting, slammed doors and chaos in a consistent unfolding daily morning drama taking place next door.

I slightly resent this. I mean I am always awake anyway but it's not nice, and just last week they filled my bin up too, about 12 days ahead of the collection. I don't mind that two or three days before but not twelve days!

Anyhow my dilemma - post the little note to say I have it (it is a note that does not reveal what it is, in case the kids read it), or sell the bike and buy wine as a recompense to the daily interruption and bin-space theft?

Beer and The Force.

The nicest, cleanest and best kept beer on the planet is available at this pub in BS 1. Every time I go it's not quite credible just how good the beer is and then I spend the rest of the day thinking about it and relishing it again in my mind - each lovely moment. Except yesterday I went in and the memorbale beer was 2nd of on the list of fabulous things to recall again, and second by a country mile. A top day indeed, and thank you!

By the way...this is the quote about the Droids...

Monday, 8 December 2008

Top Sci Fi drama!

This morning whilst not going for a run (it is frosty as you like and pretty cold) I found out that 'The Day the Earth Stood Still' has been remade and is due out this week!

Now how wrong can you go with that? It is bound to have a spaceship in it, may feature a car chase and also has this fine actress in it! This is Jennifer Connelly and she is quite easy to look at. And she's older than me (born in 1970) which is cool as so many foxy cinema women these days were born in 1980 something.

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Three today.

This morning I am going to a Christening which will be folded in to the 2nd Sunday of Advent church service. I don't think I have been to a Christening before. I suppose you take 1 baby, 1 vicar, two parents, two God parents, renounce the Devil and add water, and Bob's your Uncle? I spent lots of yesterday setting up tables and chairs for a buffet afterwards and it was nice to do that.

Today is also the 3rd birthday of the chap pictured. He is Toby, my brother's dog.

Did you know that the phrase Bob's your uncle comes from UK Primeminister Robert Cecil appointing his nephew Arthur James Balfour Minister for Ireland in 1887? Balfour also became PM himself later, but referred to Robert Cecil as 'Uncle Bob', whereupon the media had a field day with stories of nepotism.

This is BS5 reporting live with all the facts from Bristol: have a good morning.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Bingo BS5!

So tonight was my turn on Bingo calling for our church group. As it was the last one before Christmas, we also had dinner together which involved a 15 meal order to the chippie, with everyone paying the right money and receiving the right order; no easy task and fiercely observed by the sharp, three-bingo card wielding women who make up the group. It went off okay, though.

I called several games and enjoyed it muchly, and then sat out for the last hand which is always Chinese standing Bingo. Chinese standing Bingo is a hoot and I am arranging a game or three for our children's party in a week's time. It's quick and silly.

Had a couple of pints after, on my jack reading the paper and trying not to listen to a couple a table away having a severe fall out.

Off to bed now content and pleasantly tired.

The pic' has no relation to the post but is a bit smart. I'd like one of these.



So here I am waiting back on a call to see if I have been successful in going for the role 'Head of Retail' for a 65 store charity retailer, primarily located in Wales. It would be great to bag it and a real bummer to be overlooked but I gave of my best at the interview and that's all I can do. Best to focus on this evening's Bingo calling duties instead, I think. And the subsequent pint.

Come on Mr.Primeminister!

Now it's not often I'd have much to say that was good about Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling because I think they take the piss. Today however, they are putting public pressure on the Banks to pass on yesterday's interest rate cut to mortgage customers. I hope they do - it might save me another fifty pounds on top of the eighty pound reduction last month.

I have Bingo calling later this evening - one of my newly acquired duties!

Thursday, 4 December 2008

That's illogical...

This morning, with the house back to myself I have been catching up on blog stuff and movie trailers. I hadn't got round to seeing the trailer for the new Star Trek movie, and I'm quite excited about it. Here is the new Mr Spock. He looks quite like Leonard Nimoy, so that's cool. Apparently he's one of the dudes from Heroes which (amazingly) I never got into.


Wow! Several days without Blogging. I rather missed it but then I was in the eye of Hurricane Butler, the aftermath of which is pictured here.

My good friend Seamus was here with his brother Roy. They were over to see various properties, sites, friends and 'opportunities, sure'. It took them 36 hours to get here on account of missing a ferry and a train but they arrived eventually. I always enjoy it when Seamus is over, just as much as I enjoy staying with him over there but this time I had to hunker down and get on with interview prep'for a great gig over in Cardiff. I think that went reasonably well and I did my best, which is all I can do; up to the firm now to pick me or not. Hope they do!

Anyhow, after the preparation and the interview, I relaxed into an afternoon of errands and an evening of pints. I got in at 12, Seamus got in a 4 and Roy got in at half five. Several folk were not so cheery getting to their train earlier this morning.

At least Walshy has his phone charger which Seamus borrowed last time, took to Turkey, took back to Ireland and returned to my house this week.

Monday, 1 December 2008

American Onion.

This morning I was awake in bed at 3.15 and I was thinking about Barack Obama, about whom I am still Leeds United.

Anyhow, he is making Chicago a bit of a place of note prior to inauguration, and I was wondering (as you do) why Chicago is called Chicago so I got out of bed to find out. Apparently when the place was founded in 1833 it smelled of onions! The name Chicago is the French rendering of the Miami-Illinois name shikaakwa, meaning wild leek. So there you go. Bristol of course was up and going in 1033 but I don't imagine BS5 was around then.

This pic' is a pic I found of Chicago in the 1930s and I thought it was cool.

Saturday, 29 November 2008

Yes we Can...nwin!

Cannwin, a Blog pal in America (Cannwin) sent me a link for a top bridge picture. This was pretty thoughtful of her as she recollected my bridge liking from a comment she made on a post here months and months back! Of course I followed the link and found this great picture!

Bag, surely this would be No.1 contender for top mountain bike action? It would be a smart run-up to taking a bike down those stairs, but I reckon they are 'a-massiver' than they look and would require a bit of nerve!

Lummox - this is in Malaysia, dude!

Here's more info on the bridge if you are also afflicted by this curious fascination.

Thursday, 27 November 2008

Back on The Hill.

Back in BS5! Great time away but always just as fine to come home again.

I am back after 48 hours at my folks' house for my mother's birthday. On the first night home we went out for dinner, here. It's pretty smart and relaxed and top notch. Large log fires, two large dogs that potter about the place and all the menu items from no more than a county away.

Yesterday morning gave time for a long dog walk, passing through a field that had 6 Alpacas in it! An Alpaca is a curious looking sort of a chap.

Last night I got on with roast pork for my folks and their (constantly thoughtful) neighbours. I wouldn't say I did most of it but certainly a good proportion with occasional direction from my mother. Anyhow, all the plates were clean at the end. This is the table prior to serving.

So, back in BS5 and readying myself for interview Prep for a great role - interview is next week.

It's reet windy in Bristol today!

Tuesday, 25 November 2008


Today I am at my folks' house in a quiet little country village an hour from BS5 in rural Herefordshire. I have just driven my Dad to the country shop to buy tomatoes and as luck would have it, it was right on time for the village school run where a gathering of rather attractive thirty-something women were about their tasks. About 80% of that crowd near my house are Somalian and you can't see them coz they have Burkhas on. The ones in the village are not dressed that way (but then again, the BS5 lot are actually more friendly and sociable).

The country shop is like retailing in the 1950s; no SEL's (all SKU's hand priced), no EPoS, no actual stock that is on sale appears in the windows, and the layout is just odd. It's rather charming but I'd go loopy if I worked there.