Saturday, 28 February 2009

Massive stick.

This is a little part of a day in the life of two dogs, where the agenda never strays far from larking about, eating and seeking mischief! I just spent some time with these two chaps but I am back on the Hill now!

I am down one pair of socks after time at the folks' house and there's a black labrador topping the suspect list.

Top rugby fixture later , hopefully with some larks in the pub.

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Car washing Dog..

Today I am out of BS5 and larking about in HR9. My brother is here with me and when I arrived he was excitedly tracking a parcel - a new car cleaning pressure washer he had ordered for our Pa. Well my car was filthy, so was my brother's and so was Pa's so we got right on with it as assisted (in no way whatsoever) by a certain hooligan dog, saved for posterity on my digital camera.

VX52 is very shiny indeed!

Wednesday, 25 February 2009


That was the week that was!

A whole week since I posted and that is the longest gap in ages; as a recent fan lamented in an email to me, is all well? you haven't blogged for a few days. I'm missing my daily diet of australia shaped bacon, wall sitting, and top mpg action.

Well, here's what has been going on. In the last week I have had a few away fixtures. I have attended an all day seminar in Oxfordshire, a follow up church visit to a project in Buckinghamshire, a job interview in Bedfordshire and some very happy antics over the weekend here in BS5. In answer to my email blog reader, I achieved 63mpg on a run down the M4 to Buckinghamshire in the last few days.

This week also promises to be busy with an Ash Wednesday church service shortly, guests to and fro' and a decent weekend of rugby fixtures and visits here and there.

Thankful days indeed.

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Top Gadget news!

Over the last few weeks two pals (ex BS5ers) have been bemoaning the state of their TV channel boxes which have ranged from juddering to shite! Not content to be left out, my own TV channel box has been playing up this year and finally froze and sat their petulantly doing feck all a few days ago. Virgin Media sent out a cheery enginneer who just left. He looked at the bit of kit and told me it was ten years old - five years in my house and it was already 5 years old and reconditioned when I got it. Without fuss he whipped out the old and put in a spankin' new silver one. It's loads faster, the picture is clearer and it changes channels more quickly. Ideal. And it seems to have some cool lights.

Just need a good evening on the sofa to test it which by lucky chance I can do tonight!

Here it is...

Monday, 16 February 2009

I've had an E!

Yes, it's true, I've had an epiphany.

The other day one of my up lighters went pop and I thought the bulb had gone. After getting some more bulbs (no sense of 'replenishment on hand' stock in my house despite a career in retail) I replaced the dead one but to no avail - no illumination to be had. I thought the lamp had gone over to the other side for a paradise in the after life of up lighters, but then I thought it through and recalled a large blue flash when the bulb went - most odd.

So, bravely and recklessly I took a screwdriver to the plug. Now without singing my praises too much, I am reasonably literate, really quite articulate, and I can speak off the cuff to a room full of folks without notes or nerves - but - when it comes to anything electrical, mechanical or DIY I am an utter disaster zone and totally inept.

Anyhow, today I took the plug apart and changed a fuse and put it all back together and whaddayaknow, it's back to life. I can't underestimate how much progress this represents for one so inept at electrical larks!

This is the repaired lamp: also in the pic' are Mike my vacuum cleaner and Winsto' C as painted (originally & for me) by my pal Banjo.

A very firm possibility!

It is nudging fifty degrees here today, or 12.5 in that stupid scale which is all over the place now.

This is the warmest day of recent months and the first moment on the wall of 2009. The fosters is ready so we shall see who walks past, what happens and whether or not it is the first such moment of '09.

A quick shout to Walshy as it is his birthday today. When he lived here in BS5, his wall was a champion bit of brick work, and you could swing your legs off it very satisfactorily.

Customer Service...

Today I have been to John Lewis where the customer service was, and always is outstanding. I made some purchases and then had a wander about the rest of the Mall. Mission 'New Specs' and Mission 'phone upgrade' both failed today and are looking like Thursday sorties now. It is half term week in Bristol so it was pretty busy out there today.

I then came home and switched on the TV to catch Masterchef on the replay service but the whole thing froze and then stopped working. My TV box has been doing that weekly for a while now so I called my service provider - after about 230 options to choose from I eventually spoke to a cheery scouser (Rebecca) and she has despatched an engineer for mid week. Maybe I will get some smart new kit.

John Lewis

I am off to John Lewis today to have a look at clothes horses (as they are called in old fashioned circles) - my Mum asked me if I would do a recce and I will then meet her there next week for a day out. Whilst at the mall, I will order new glasses and hopefully upgrade my phone!

Also I have to buy some gear to store the stuff I am making in reference to my creativity post!

All in all it's a day of activity before three decent days of church work this week.

Friday, 13 February 2009

All the way to HK

More plane action!

My brother was kind enough to take this cheeky little phone snap for me. This is the plane he is currently riding all the way to Hong Kong, landing in about 2 hours' time, I hope!


Today in the on-going intellectual PSP pursuit that is 'After Burner: Black Falcon' I have unlocked the SR-71 Blackbird. This was a hard won prize and I had to shoot down lots of things to earn the dollars to buy it; if only getting a real job was so easy! Anyhow, I have been unleashed with this top smart bit of kit, and it is really quite a lark. And fast too.

Back in the real world, I have quite a bit of paid work next week, so that's a bonus.

I have decided what I am going to 'make' for the readers who signed up to my creative post a few posts back.

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Mr Bump.

Now there's a risk that this might alienate my small but regular readership; this Blog does not exist in the every day plinky-plonky sphere of normality but is instead a bit odd, what with frequent references to bridges, trains, super models and naked Bloggers.

So....on the piss a few weeks back with my brother, I told him in a moment of weakness that I had this favourite bump on the motorway that was much smarter than any other bump elsewhere on the motorway network. It's on the English side of the Severn Bridge coming over from Wales, and just as you get to the 'Welcome to England' sign. If you go over at about 64mph it's a bit of a laugh, any faster and you just miss it. My brother took the piss most days since I told him, but then I decided to show him what it was all about as I drove him towards his train and plane connection for HK.

Check it out:

Space crash!

Today, for the first time, or at least the first time that has been publicly acknowledged, two satellites crashed into each other in space! This took place 485 miles above Siberia and at speeds in the thousands of miles per hour. There is now a gert massive cloud of debris that poses a bit of a threat to all the other crap going round and round and round.

Firstly I hope it doesn't come down over BS5, and secondly, I wonder if there has been an exchange of insurance details?

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

On Camera.

My brother has been with me in BS5 today; he is on the choo-choo to London as I type, and from there to Hong Kong, and eventually Manila where he lives. We were driving back from our parents' house this morning and happened to capture this fairly silly moment on video. This is me, Dave, VX52 and some top plant. If you are watching in America, hey that's the side of the road we drive on.

Oh dear.

Monday, 9 February 2009


I missed all the snow in BS5 last week because I was at my folks' house, but I am here today after a fine Monday, and it is snowing intensely! I woke at half four this morning and stayed up so it feels late now, though it is only about half nine. It has been snowing for 80 minutes so far.

What a mix of thoughts and things this day; news, emotions, worries and delights from right across the spectrum in equal measure.

Here'a shout to some important people today:

BS4 for her birthday - happy days to you, lovely girl
Nicks for a whole, constant delight these last four years!
A rather fine Seven Stars patron of my appreciated acquaintance

And so to bed....

Creation..for you.

My friend Alaina had this charming idea on her Blog, and the price of my signing up to it at hers is to reciprocate and post it here on BS5 here we go.

Please remember, Alaina is creative, artistic and thoughtful (Alaina, is that standard girl software or was it a post production download?) whereas I have no creative flair beyond moderate cooking.

Anyhow..I copied it almost word for word except for point 5.

The first five people to respond to this post will get something made by me! My choice. For you. This offer does have some restrictions and limitations:

1. I make no guarantees that you will like what I make. But you will, because it's from me!
2. What I create will be just for you.
3. It'll be done this year.
4. You have no clue what it's going to be.
5. It might involve trains or bridges.

The catch? Oh, the catch is that you are invited to re-post this on your blog and offer the same to the first 5 people who do the same there.

It's gone a bit Chile.

Here are two smart bottles of wine that my brother gave to me when we were both with the folks last weekend. I had shared some with him over dinner and he gave me two to take home. It came all the way to BS5 from the Casablanca Valley in Chile. It is sunny and 70 degrees there today, according to Mr Google. Here in BS5 it is chilly and wet with a sneaky possibility of lots of snow tonight!

Given that it might snow a ton tonight, I have stacked up on vital supplies (food , Floozies and Fosters) just in case.

The little chap between the bottles is Australasian and not from anywhere near Chile.

Sunday, 8 February 2009


Are you cold reading this Blog? Have you had snow and cold wind, and chilly days where you are?

Warm up then, with Blog BS5's interactive fire (with commentary).

You can press play on the video below and then rub your hands in front of the screen.

Please don't throw sweet wrappers onto the fire, but otherwise feel free to enjoy it.

Dandelion: David was next to me chatting to you on his Netbook as I took this video! We built the fire with some real dedication.

Saturday, 7 February 2009

Horse larks

Here is a horse my brother and I encountered going for the newspapers today. He seemed a happy chap and was anticipating his breakfast of straw.

I think there is a respite in the cold today so I may head back to BS5 to see what weekend capers are going on there. There will be a siege mentality in my local pub as patrons brave out the freeze!

After meeting the horse, my brother and I larked about making silly shapes in the snow and generally being daft.

Friday, 6 February 2009


My route back to BS5 is closed! Apparently the Severn bridge has been shut today because large blocks of ice are falling from the cables and the piers and smashing car windscreens. That doesn't sound so much of a laugh.

What a difference.

Wow! Today it's hot, windy, unforgiving and sandy. There are camels coming past the house and Bedouin. And All the vegetation is gone except for one tree. Whooda' thought that?

(In truth it snowed even more and is blanketed again).

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Not really hazardous but fun.

Hey, it snowed most of the day but has stopped recently. My brother and I took advantage of the gap in this fierce weather and went for two small pints! Here's a view from the way back.

Rural drama.

I am at my folks' house and it has snowed lots and is due to continue that way! Presence of gritting lorries unlikely beyond main roads but the village pub can be reached later, I suspect.

Watch this space.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

A little bit of politics.

Well I think Barack O is doing pretty well so far; he came right out and said it was his mistake with the nominations he has lost, and he is also going to hang in there a little with 'American goods first' in his stimulus package. Why shouldn't he do that (in the second matter) it's their dollar and jobs and it's not exclusively protectionist?

Okay, that's my sensible fix for the day: normal random blog stuff resumes shortly.

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

A meme from FFF

This was a hoot!


Here's my answers:
1. You can press a button that will make any one person explode. Who would you blow up? Martin McGuiness; he’s a cunt!

2. You can flip a switch that will wipe any band or musical artist out of existence. Which one will it be? John Lennon!

3. Who would you really like to just punch in the face? I'd have a go at the original person who got confused between 3 and 5

5. You can only have one kind of sandwich. Every sandwich ingredient known to humankind is at your immediate disposal. What kind will you make? Cold lamb with tomato and cucumber vinaigrette on regular brown bread

6. You, Elvis and Princess Diana are in a dog sled, fleeing across the Siberian wastes with wolves in hot pursuit. The wolves are catching up fast. Who would you throw out to gain speed and why? Elvis: fat, fuck-full of cheeseburgers and heavy. He’s the one I’d look to eat if I were a wolf

7. You have the opportunity to sleep with the movie celebrity of your choice. We are talking no-strings-attached sex and it can only happen once. Who is the lucky celebrity of your choice? Natasha McElhone

8. You have the opportunity to sleep with the music-celebrity of your choice. Who do you pick? Charlene Spiteri – every time.

9. Now that you’ve slept with two different people in a row, you seem to be having an excellent day because you just came across a hundred-dollar bill on the sidewalk. Holy crap, a hundred bucks! How are you gonna spend it? In the pub, of course.

10. You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you gonna go? London

11. Upon arrival to the aforementioned location, you get off the plane and discover another hundred-dollar bill. Now that you are in the new location, what are you gonna do? Take a pint at Cheers Bar and call Mike

12. Your dream date. Who, where and why? No!

13. An angel appears out of Heaven and offers you a lifetime supply of the alcoholic beverage of your choice. It is…? St Emillion

14. Okay; girls and gay guys stand over here; guys and lesbians over there (I know and love my readership) …Girls and gay guys first: You're in bed with Marilyn Monroe, Doris Day and Salma Hayek. Who's gonna be the lucky girl? (you're only allowed one). If I answer this, am I a Gayer? Who is Salma Hayek?

And similarly, guys and lesbians: You're in bed with Cary Grant, Paul Newman and Johnny Depp. Who's gonna be the lucky guy? (again, you're only allowed one). Give your reasons. Cary Grant – classy dresser. Am I a Gayer now? Eek.

15. Rufus appears out of nowhere with a time-travelling phone booth. You can go anytime in the PAST. What time are you travelling to and what are you going to do when you get there? I’d check out the end of the Second World War, I think (and take a beer).

16. You discover a beautiful island upon which you may build your own society. You make the rules. What is the first rule you put into place? Exodus: Ch 20, V 12.

17. You have been given the opportunity to create the half-hour TV show of your own design. What is it called and what’s the premise? ‘Top Construction Action’ and the premise is ‘Excitement and drama in the modern world of concrete and cranes’.

18. What is your favorite curse word? ‘Mother-fucker, mother-fucker!’

19. You have a choice of two doors, one of which you MUST go through; the first leads to a roomful of spiders, the second to a roomful of clowns. Which is it to be? Clowns.

20. Your house is on fire! You have just enough time to run in there and grab ONE inanimate object (that's "inanimate" … leave your kids to burn; you know you want to). So what’s the item? A fire extinguisher.

All good.

Tonight I have been looking at pics from my Christmas diggie camera and this is one that just says 'larks'. It's two friends of mine, and the one who is airborne was hosting the party. The picture epitomises the carefree idiocy of good days, a few glasses lowered, and the trust of friendships. I am not in the pic' because maybe I took it but I know I was upside down seconds after.

All good....

One pinter.

Now when I saw this pic' I thought it was Sam Power as she is back in the Obama fold having exited quietly in March 08 for likening Hillary C to a monster, off the record but reported nevertheless(by The Scotsman, maybe?)She is back in the foreign policy team.

Anyhow, it's not SP but Caroline Kennedy. With such photogenic folks, there was little chance of her being a minger, and in fairness, she isn't!

Maybe Sam Power will recommend my Blog to Caroline K?

Here's a quick credit to Annie Leibowitz who took the pic' for Vanity Fair; please don't sue me.

Air Spaz One.

Today I made some top smart progress on After Burner: Black Falcon on my PSP.

I have unlocked the second mission and *nearly* aced it today. There's a bridge at the end that you have to blow up (sacrilege!) and on my first 4 goes I flew smack into it and it was me who blew up, but then on the 5th go, a bit like Luke in Episode IV, I used the force, flew up to that bridge and popped a cap in its ass.

Top exploding action and it went down, and I flew through.

Alas in my excitement I failed to out-fly about 7 air to air missiles right after and I got toasted. Still, I know I can do it now, so Mission 3 is sure to follow.

My plane has stabilisers on it, so maybe I am not really playing at Top Gun level just yet.

All of this was a bit of a Brucey as I suddenly had a spare afternoon and used it very productively on the sofa.


Well, this is really as bad as it got here in BS5 on Monday. Some more snow due to arrive today but not a case of being snowed in, really. However I think I might be sensible and delay my sojourn over the Severn Bridge for a day.

If I am snowed in, there is a default emergency plan to all make our way to The Rhubarb and wait it out there!

Monday, 2 February 2009

More snow

Well, it snowed a bit in Bristol today and enough to make a mark but it seems to have snowed itself out by now. Apparently in the frozen north where two good friends (and one time BS5ers) live with their wives, the snow is heavier.

February snow.

Well there’s no snow here in BS5 but it’s all the news everywhere else in the country! I think I will ask for a refund; a snowy Monday would have been a lark. It’s all in the filthy saaaaaaaarf-east at the moment and heading north, but not it seems heading west.

UPDATE: It is now snowing!