Saturday, April 29, 2006


A picture today of Llyswen again – I forgot about this viewpoint.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Change it's name to Snickers

I instinctively dislike the London Marathon. The whole thing is ludicrous. What have wheelchairs to do with Marathons ? Whats so elite about an elite runner that merits a separate start from the rest of the field; the only thing that might induce me to watch would be the possibility of some kid working his way up through this bunch of professional miseries and winning the race on Tower Bridge by running the last few yards backwards waving an open can of lager tauntingly in the face of the pursuing elite.
Even though Paula Radcliff wasn’t there this year I was still unable to bear the awful voices of Brendan Foster & Steve Cram for more than 10 minutes. At one point Cram piously said ‘at what other sporting event in world could complete novices compete against sporting giants’ at which point the camera cut from the sparsely populated elite race well under its early started pampered way to a great mass of ordinaries strolling and squeezing its way through the lovely gates of Greenwich Park completely despoiled by huge advertisements for some kind of politically correct margarine.. My heroic little yob runner would have to be very good indeed to overcome all this and beat these sporting giants.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

More Money for the NHS

So £250,000 pa GPs.
Dr Del to Dr Rodney, "This time in 4 years we'll be millionaires ".
Missing millions

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Another Fishy Business

Years ago in Post Magazine - an insurance paper taken by me mainly for the jobs, I read the story of a trawler called the 'Girl Pat'. I could never thereafter find any reference to it, the internet not being invented. I have just found the following BBC link.
Girl Pat With some research and a script this could be a good film.
Now I must see if I can find a copy of the book by the mutinous captain George Orsborne.


Have just read the following first bit of a conversation on the Chess website I play on.
‘Johnnyjohnson(50): I have a theory its my own theory that in some cases gravity can go sideways, that explains chairs moving across the room in poltergiest behavoiur. I don’t know why gravity goes sideways but I think in some cases it does its my own idea but noone seems interested.’

Saturday, April 15, 2006

The Fastest Gun Alive - Idea for research

Yesterday I watched ‘The Fastest Gun Alive’ with Glen Ford. There was a very good , if out of place, dance sequence with Russ Tamblyn.
Perhaps now would be a good time to record my own contribution to the knowledge banks of Psychology. So to start could you imagine that you are Wyatt Earp about to draw your gun in Dodge city. Draw your gun fast and shoot and then hold it there. Now look at your gun and remember what you see.
Now imagine that you are flying a Lockheed Lightening jet around the room – off you go. Now freeze , remember the position. – and as Harry Hill would say , “and relax”.
Playing cowboys and Indians and flying a Lockheed Lightening dates my childhood terribly I know.
Think of the gun – had you extended the first one or two fingers like the barrel of a gun ? Or when you looked at your hand was your index finger curled around the trigger of an otherwise invisible gun, as mine always was.?
Think of the plane were your arms swepped back like the wings of a Lightening jet or was your aircraft, as mine was, totally invisible with your hands clasping an imaginary joystick.
I think there is a significant difference between the two modes of imagining.
Pointed, gun like fingers and swepped back wing like arms are signals to the world outside of the personal imagination whereas my way of doing it seems much more a ‘private world’. I wonder if there are two groups distinct groups in the populace displaying these characteristics.

Friday, April 14, 2006


It occurs to me that God like an anxious parent leaves us at the school gates of life and is reluctant to intervene until it is time to go home; but I think I may have suffered from too much Readers Digest.

Advertising ‘The rattling of a stick inside a swill bucket’ – George Orwell

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Philosophy of Art

Did this course at the OU.
Lionel Blair style lecturer on how to take the exam.
"Now you are all students of aesthetics so when you come to your desks I want you put a beautiful bowl of flowers (gesturing) there - not there , but there"
Ann has just come back from the village art exhibition. Quote "Its a £100 but its got a beautiful frame mind".

Saturday, April 08, 2006

GP's again

Picked up a pensioners pills yesterday from the surgery and they included this warning.Id love to be a fly on the wall during one of these meetings to 'discuss their behaviour'. Personally I think the behaviour of some GP's needs a bit of explaining too.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Kingsclere murders

I bought an old Daily Herald dated November 11 1944 , cost 1d.
On the back page down the bottom was this curious story, and I dont mean the 'Double dried egg allocation'. 9 US soldiers jailed for life for murder most foul.
How come it occupied such a small paragraph on the back page? Even in these days of depravity it would make banner headlines.
I looked it up on the internet and found that in fact it was only the Daily Herald that reported it , the whole story had been hushed up.
Details of the event can be found here

Tuesday, April 04, 2006


During the first year of an OU degree course I was on there was also a BA pilot.
He assured us that a fellow pilot had got the sack from BA because while in the air he tied two balls of string to his seat in the cockpit and then, walking backwards gradually unwinding the string and keeping it taught backed out of the cabin into the passenger area and approached, backwards the first passenger , a lady. He asked her if she would mind just holding the two pieces of string carefully just to keep the plane steady while he quickly visited the bathroom.
While on the subject of aircraft I used to work at Lloyds of London and a friend of mine who was an aviation broker showed me a claim he was trying to get settled.
I think it involved an Indian airliner. The airline was new and while it’s own pilots were training the principal pilots on the planes were Australian with Indian Co –Pilots. The plane had been held up on the runway for a long while and when it finally got the go ahead, as it sped past the control tower, the Australian pilot gave the tower the V sign to express his annoyance. The Indian co-pilot took this as a signal to raise the undercarriage and the whole thing sunk down into the tar mac. Nobody hurt but it cost a lot.

Monday, April 03, 2006

à la mode

Terribly excited - just heard my new machine washable , tumble dry, boil in the bag suit has arrived from Marks & Spenser's.
I do hope it is up to my usual sartorial standards.

Saturday, April 01, 2006


I hear that it is Spring in Hong Kong just as it is Spring here.
Something puzzles me about seasons.
They are as I understand caused by the tilt of the earth towards the sun.
If it is the turn of the northern half of the globe to tilt towards the sun its summer in the north and winter at the bottom. As the earth goes round the sun in an ellipse the tilt relatively changes so that the bottom bit gets it’s turn in the sun and the top half takes its turn with the snow etc.
There is a big difference between winter and summer temperatures at least at our latitudes.
Life survives within a very narrow temperature range.
The Earth is 93 million miles from the sun.
It seems tremendously fortunate that we should be at just the right distance from the sun to evolve and it is the seasons that seem to underline that point to me. 93 million miles from the source and yet a ‘tilt’ on the axis of the Earth which accounts for big temperature ranges so far as life is concerned only brings the Summer Pole of the Earth closer to the sun by 3000 miles or so.
But then there is something called the anthropic principle which rather screws up this feeling of being specially selected.
I think this says that the only reason that there is this extraordinary set of circumstances is that there is somebody here to observe them. There might be a billion other ‘suitable’ planets where no observers have evolved.
Hold on though doesn’t that make life here even more improbable?
I am off to see if I can make some sense of it all.

"I had that Bertram Russell in the back of my cab one day and I said 'Lord Russell, you're a philosopher. What's it all about then Guv?' - and do you know, he couldn't tell me"
from Sir Isaiah Berlin Memorial lecture