Saturday, November 30, 2002

Blues 1 Spurs 1. Fair enough.

Sorry for lack of updates today, it's been a very long day, longer than usual on a travelling to Blues day, made more tolerable by meeting up with the old dear, Bluetitch and her amazing beau, Ragamuffin, at the game. Keep nodding off though since I got home, no condition in which to blog.

Friday, November 29, 2002

I could go along with this buy nothing day idea, if I didn't suspect that all those participating didn't make sure their larders were very well stocked beforehand. At the risk of having to change the name of me blog to Sanctimonious, I will continue to buy as I need to, but will give it some forethought anyway. Chuffin hippies!

I find myself on the horns of a dilemma. Unlike firemen, my profession really is shit and has a massive and dangerous recruitment problem. My employers, the bastards, gave us all (in my particular role) an extra grand per year over the national settlement (unison not involved, big surprise). Now they have offered us 2 thousand before Christmas if we sign to say we won't leave for 2 years. Of course I have said they can stick it up their collective arses, and flounced about, with what I hope was dignity. The reality is, though, I am more likely to get the sack than leave voluntarily, so I am kicking 2 grand into touch for nothing. On the other hand, whereas I see blue skys and tranquil seas my Mrs sees a new floor.
I think I will take the money, keep shtum and just keep adding to my cd collection.

Bluetitch, the old dear, was banging on about female songwriters on a Blues messageboard earlier. As a result I found out that Joni Mitchell's new lp is online.. I also reminded myself of the late and very great Laura Nyro.

All my life, I wanted to be a gangster. This is is as good as it gets.

Wednesday, November 27, 2002

I have a sad tale to relate. My nipper has decided to knock football on the head. It's sad for me, sad for him and sad for the state of British football because I believe the circumstances tell us much.
I am an avid follower of football and when I was a nipper myself could play a bit, but have never pushed him to play or watch. He has never shown much interest then out of the blue, around about the middle of September, maybe later, he said he wanted to join a team. So he did. He joined a local team with a good reputation (as far as one can tell these things) after having only one session to see if he liked it.
In truth, he was clueless, but was as keen as mustard and as motivated as anyone can be. We paid the club fees and bought him everything he needed (despite being assured by the club that they would provide everything). While the evenings were still light he would be in the garden, endlessly kicking a ball, we would spend hours at the weekend on one of the local park pitches. Bit by bit he started to improve; he kicked straight, he controlled the ball, he kept his eyes open when heading. All of it being relative of course, he is only seven so was still fairly crap, but getting better and more importantly, trying his little socks off.
Training with the club was a different story however. While his skills were improving, his knowledge of the game itself was fairly non existent and he knew nothing of positions or the lingua franca of the game. Say chip to him and he would ask for sauce with it. Most of the others his age were better as they had played more. So they stuck him with a bunch of tiddlers aged about five, which in itself was quite humiliating, especially as most of the others in his own age group were class mates. Worse, the kids themselves would tell him to go and play with the little kids, and off he would forlornly trudge. The coaches never told the other kids that it wasn't for them to say, they would just watch him go; never once explaining to him why he was being excluded from his mates.
The training itself was a bit old fashioned and nothing like the school of Ajax. There seemed to be a little elite group of about 8 who had loads of personal attention, sometimes from 2 coaches. The rest would be supervised by one geezer, sometimes about 20 of them, mostly aged about five. In consequence, little actual training would be done. Any kid would be lucky to touch the ball twice in about half an hour. The nipper would be in the middle of this, watching his mates actually doing stuff, and wonder why.
Games would consist of upwards of twenty nippers running around being supervised by 2 blokes. Why they couldn't have split them and have 2 games so everyone had a chance, not just the best or the strongest, christ knows. Any coaching website I have looked at recommends small sided games with an emphasis on developing skill, with the result unimportant. If it's good enough for Bergkamp, Kluivert et al, it should be good enough for us.
Anyway, the upshot is, he's given up. Not because he is all that bad, or because he lost interest, but because he lost heart. He felt belittled and humiliated, and gave up something he was starting to love and could be good at. Very sad.
The sadder thing is this is actually a well run club. I suspect the attitude is typical of most clubs, maybe even better than some. And there is the rub. Motivated kids who are a bit less developed than others will give up because they get no encouragement and are made to feel useless; how many kids go away and find something else to do, never to return? It's not like the old days, when kids would play all day on the street with a tennis ball. There are a thousand other activities to choose from. British football needs to wake the fuck up!
We never recieved our promised kit either, and spent well in excess of 100 quid on different boots, shorts, shirts, socks, pads and club membership. All in good condition, hardly used, if anyones interested.

Tuesday, November 26, 2002

Aki has updated. He seems to be in a bit of a mood.

Time to show my ignorance again. I noticed a review of "Memoirs of a Beatnik" by Diane di Prima in the Guardian. Of course I had never heard of her, but a cursory google search brings forth so much that it is obvious she is another major artist of whom I have managed to remain blisfully ignorant. There is plenty more here.
The Guardian review refers to "Howl" by Ginsberg.

Me and Kwacky have had some run ins on Blues message boards, but credit where it is due, he has himself a nice blog.

There was a link on mefi to various snowflake sites. I thought this one, with its images of snowflakes would be beautiful, but it isn't, the snowflakes look like cheap plastic baubles. Mind you I hated Miss Smillas Feeling for Snow and could barely tolerate Snow Falling On Cedars.
One of the best books I ever read as a nipper involved a kid jumping off a train and having to yomp across miles and miles of snow covered fenland I think. It was some sort of a thriller. I can't remember who it was by or what it was called, but it was great, which shows I am not completely biased against snow.
di Prima has a snow poem .

I know I have posted this Battleship game before, not on here though I don't think. It's very good, if chuffin frustrating.

The U.S gets tough with Saudi Arabia. I will believe it when I see it.

I love a good backlash. Richard Picciotto, the fire chief who was in the world trade centre on 9/11 and has written a book which has been serialised in just about every newspaper in the world , gets a bit of stick.

Pictures of lightning

Sunday, November 24, 2002

It appears that Gangs of New York will finally be released in January. Robert Mcrum has written a good piece for the Observer on the historical background.
Times article on the travails involved in getting Daniel Day Lewis to accept a part in the film.

Another site where you just keep clicking away and random images appear. It's a bit compelling.

Most of the terrorists who flew planes into buildings were Saudi's. Most of the people in Guantanamo Bay are Saudis. There are strong suspicions that Saudis bankroll Al Queda. There are very strong suspicions suspicions that high ranking Saudi officials funded at least 2 of the 9/11 terrorists.
Saudi Arabia still goes in for public beheadings and uses torture as a matter of routine. And these are the good guys?

You wouldn't believe the amount of kudos you get just for making a paper aeroplane that flies well.

Saturday, November 23, 2002

My run of good luck continues, I smashed my bumper this morning. Oh bollards, I muttered.

Viking kittens.

Sunderland 0 Blues 1: three beautiful, saucy, sexy points.

Farting nuns organ. I promise, this is hilarious.

It appears that over 100 people died and many more were badly injured during rioting in Nigeria sparked by an article having a go at Muslims who objected to the Miss World contest being held there. I was amazed that the sorry farago still exists, and given those events I wish it didn't. The organisers have "cancelled" the thing, it will now be held in London. Have they no shame, 100 people dead and God knows how many lives blighted, and for the organisers of Miss World, it is an inconvenience. There's no such thing as bad publicity, I suppose.
The website of the paper that started it all.

Friday, November 22, 2002

I have had an enormous git of a day at work, characterised by dealing with gits of varying quality. Most of the morning was spent in the police station, but that was the fun part so I won't dwell on that. The afternoon was unremitting; it was as though someone had announced this is world "Be a Git Day". And it was all so petty and unneccessary. I ended up shouting at some silly git, which is unlike me, but I was sorely provoked, your honour. She has a habit of bursting into tears so I hope I managed this, then the day won't have been a complete waste. Some other git, who was very rude on the phone, actually had the gall to phone and complain about me! Jeez.
Anyway I was still at it way past home time and was fuming all around Sainsburys and driving home. Fucking mad as hell I was. Poor old Mrs Buddha had been forewarned because she had phoned mid afteroon and knew everything had gone tits up. She had ensured a nice white was chilling when I got home, then listened patiently while I ranted on about the gits I have to put up with. Mid rant, middle cherub, who is 3 just came up and planted one on my cheek. To say all the stress and angst went away would be overstating the case, but it was a melting moment.

My brother, who is an idiot, has always insisted there is money to be made by marketing a device which removes hair from around ladies delicate parts (down there you know) and calling it a quim trim. Well you can get a bone clone and a snatch match so why not?

Unbelieveable. Chuffin unbelievable. As I sat here typing I became aware of several loud bangs. Thinking it was nippers with fireworks I ignored it, but they continued and seemed to be someone banging our back fence. So off I trotted. As soon as I opened the back kitchen door the cats shot in, terrified, and it became apparent there was a fire going on. Not unusual, we abut woods, public housing and a park. But it seemed a bit closer and there were monstrous bangs. Off I went upstairs for a better view. There is a chuffing car, ablaze, on a footpath, about ten yards from our fence. There is a blue light flashing some distance away and there are three yellow luminous jackets in close attendance.
Fuckin horrible little gits. When I tell people where I live they say oo er thats a bit posh innit. They don't know the chuffin half of it. The local intelligentsia have gathered now and are clearly loving it, mind you so are my nippers.
I hate theses little fuckers around here. And their thick parents.
Anyone wanna buy a house?

Shamingly, I empathise with this guy. Perhaps if I wasn't such a repressed piddler, I wouldn't have to live in such a shit hole.

The Friday Five dudes seem to have desrted their public, but it doesn't matter, because we have the fragrant Bluetitch!
1/ What is the most romantic thing you've ever done?
She likes to keep it simple old Bluetitch. I am a romantic soul every minute of every day, I don't go in for grand or empty gestures, no one will ever get a Valentines card from me. I do nothing without thinking how it will impact upon Mrs Buddha, I think of her constantly. Planning a menu I think what will she like, shopping, what will she like, buying a book, will Mrs Buddha like it?, no? lets find one for her. I love her, effortlessly, pitilessly, every waking minute, thats as romantic as I get.
2/ What is the most romantic thing that someone has done for/to you?
As above really. I find kindred spirits who don't bother with romance per se, but simply live it. Mrs Buddha loves me, puts up with me, that is very romantic. She put up with when I went through a very bad time and was drinking like a bastard, nothing is more romantic than that. She believes in me. Once when we barely knew each other I decided, like a prick, to act like a fool and tell her to fuck off. She followed me into the gents and basically refused to let it die. Now look at us. Romance, living and breathing it.
3/ What is the most romantic piece of music you've ever heard?
Another impossible to answer question, with it all depending on context and mood. In the context of loving Mrs Buddha and at this particular moment, it is "Whole Wide World " by Wreckless Eric. When we "courted" she had never heard that but I loved it and Eric, so we would blast it out, whatever time we got in, usually about 7 am. I may or may not have been divorced at the time. For me to meet someone like Mrs Buddha, and get to grips, really was like meeting a broad from Tahiti, unimaginable.
4/ What is the most romantic film you've ever seen?
Finally, an easy one. Cyrano de Bergerac, without a shadow of a doubt.
5/ What is the most romantic thing you'd like to do but haven't?
Walk the entire length of the Pembrokeshire coastal path. Just me and Mrs Buddha. Find perfect pubs in magical settings and fall asleep wrapped in each others arms, in big comfortable beds with cool cotton sheets, exhausted.

Good article on war photographer Jame Nachtwey. Quite depressing.

Thursday, November 21, 2002

Another reason to love the web (and mefi). Twexus, just keep clicking and more good stuff comes your way.

The state of play in the war against terror. We do not seem to be doing very well.

Puerile blowing up frog game.

Talking of slimy creatures, the fuck faced cowbag sort of snarled and looked at me as if I was something the cat had fetched in this evening. I can't tell you what a relief that was!

It looks like I may as well knock the cd writer off my Christmas list.

Last week a new colleague joined us for a couple of days a week. She's ok, but a bit prim and she has the misfortune to be sitting opposite me. I first knew her about ten years ago and our paths have crossed regularly over the last 2-3 years, but we have never shared an office. In deference, I try to moderate my language, but she complains even when I say bugger. It has been pointed out to her that since joining this particular team my language has improved and that I am making an effort on her behalf, but still she complains. I will have to leave her a copy of this fucking Guardian article.

Googlism could become a bit addictive. Just type a name in and it will tell what the webs opinion of it is. Here's what it has to say about Ragamuffin:
ragamuffin is a person who is honest about their personal
ragamuffin is described as the perfect pet
ragamuffin is a large cuddly breed
ragamuffin is such
ragamuffin is gentle
ragamuffin is people loving and affectionate
ragamuffin is the newest breed to achieve championship status as of may 1
ragamuffin is bred for a puppy
ragamuffin is een kruising tussen een ragdoll en een maine coon
ragamuffin is a large cat with a soft
ragamuffin is a variant of the ragdoll
ragamuffin is a person who is honest about their personal failings and knows they desperately need the grace and love of god; someone more concerned about
ragamuffin is a strong cruising catamaran
ragamuffin is the best and most reliable taxi driver we have found in negril
ragamuffin is a direct descendant of josephine
ragamuffin is a particularly affectionate and cuddlesome cat
ragamuffin is a unique cat possessing qualities found no where else in the feline world
ragamuffin is one of the whitsunday's largest and fastest yachts and is comfortable in any sea condition
ragamuffin is based in lancaster
ragamuffin is a ghetto
ragamuffin is a blend of the "cherubim" breeds
ragamuffin is a cat that stems from the original ragdoll lines
ragamuffin is a commitment to a musical and thematic diversity that is rare in pop music these days
ragamuffin is a sorry creature in rags
ragamuffin is people loving and affectionate?a large
ragamuffin is a rare breed
ragamuffin is a cousin to the ragdoll
ragamuffin is an independent female clothing label
ragamuffin is a former stray
ragamuffin is due for a top placing
ragamuffin is about an hour and fifteen minutes behind eureka
ragamuffin is much more rare than the ragdoll
ragamuffin is an impressive achievement in its own right
ragamuffin is a superbly maintained
ragamuffin is a most unique and purrsonable cat
ragamuffin is now available to purchase online at cd baby
ragamuffin is a commitment to a musical and thematic diversity that is rare in pop music these days?especially pop music driven
ragamuffin is to create a place where students can hang out and study
ragamuffin is a wonderful lovable
ragamuffin is one of the whitsunday?s largest and fastest maxi yachts
ragamuffin is quick to find an excuse when her neighbor is having a bad hair day
ragamuffin is
ragamuffin is one of the whitsunday's largest and fastest maxi yachts
ragamuffin is a 14
ragamuffin is a thing which can build confidence in someone
ragamuffin is "a shabbily clothed
ragamuffin is the best lyric writing rich has ever done
ragamuffin is reinforced with stringers in the bow
ragamuffin is one of the whitsunday largest and fastest maxi yachts
ragamuffin is; volgens het woordenboek betekent ragamuffin 'schooier' of 'een bij elkaar geraapt
ragamuffin is my hero
ragamuffin is een snelle en sportieve zeiler
ragamuffin is located in san angelo
ragamuffin is clearly seen by the experts he cites
ragamuffin is a delightful cat that thrives on being with its family
ragamuffin is confused by the bunny
ragamuffin is available in a rainbow of colors
ragamuffin is one of the whitsundays largest and fastest maxi yachts
ragamuffin is one of the apbas and popras premier teams
ragamuffin is one
ragamuffin is a large lovable lap cat
ragamuffin is totally classic sounding aerosmith
ragamuffin is a great name for a band
ragamuffin is lauding him to the skies
ragamuffin is the follow up from the jesus record
ragamuffin is in the australian team
ragamuffin is a dog unto himself
ragamuffin is a formidable opponent but the crew was confident of a good result

Pathe News has put all its archives on the web. Bleedin marvelous.

Wednesday, November 20, 2002

Zen and photography via Plep.

The U.S does not have a noble history when it comes to looking after their one time allies. Now that the Taliban have gone, or at least been removed from power, little effort seems to be made to ensure the that people living in towns, villages and cities do not die of starvation or cold or both. The first Bush famously told the Iraqi people to rise up against their oppressor before hot footing it out of there and leaving them to their fate. I fear for what awaits the Iraqi people once regime change has been effected. History suggests that the U.S will not be among their greatest benefactors.
I posted a Polly Toynbee article last week which detailed some of the misery and suffering of Afghans, there is plenty more if you care to look for it. Like this.
Their Arab neighbours won't be much help either.

The International Childrens Digital Library, despite being a bit of a mouthful, seems like brilliant resource. Unfortunately, I can't get into the bugger. If anyone works it out, give us a nod?

I was last in the office tonight and the fuck faced cowbag went out of her way to say goodnight. Now I am bricking it.

A bit more Bush bashing. The media gets a kicking too.

Cybermouse game. Bloody Chuffing Impossible.

Jet fighter paper aeroplane. I am buggered if I have the patience for it.

All you could possibly wish to know about the Samurai.

Elephant illusion.

Tuesday, November 19, 2002

The berk who ran on the pitch when Blues beat Villa and pranced about in front of the Villa goalie, giving him the wanker sign before patting him on the cheek, has got himself a 4 month spell in chokie. Well. It seems a bit harsh, but fuck him. Three times he ran on the pitch, still not enough to justify a prison term but so what.
Some Blues fans have been getting on my nerves for years with their penchant for getting on the pitch. It is stupid and unneccessary and indulged in by spoilt brats and exhibitionists. The sort who dress up as tarts or babies on pudsey bear day or whatever it is called. This tit must have been aware of the rules against running on the pitch, but chose to ignore them, three times. He is the sort of bloke who does not give a shit about anyone else and will do whatever he wants, regardless of the consequences, or the effect on others. "Look at me", that's all that matters. Blues have previous when it comes to pitch encroachments, and one day we will be punished, but that day may be a bit further off if Harper and his ilk think twice.
For running on the pitch, the sentence was harsh, if I was the judge though, I would have dealt with him harshly simply because he is a prick.

The top 50 of the Pitchfork top 100 albums of the eighties is now up.

The pussy cat that followed your mouse was dead cute, this eye isn't.

Barking game in which you are buggered if you don't shoot the buggers.

Badger racing.

Interview with Will Oldham, or Palace, or, if you prefer, Bonnie Prince Billy. He is barking.

Monday, November 18, 2002

For some reason, Pitchfork has compiled a list of the best albums of the eighties. Here is the bottom 50.

Donny Osmond is making a comeback. Again.

I found this hilarious. It seems that young Bush and Eminem are both riding high in the popularity stakes because there is an anti feminist backlash going on. These days, the U.S stands by it's man.

Make your own emoticons.

Another reason to love the web: interactive Mark Twain scrapbook. It's the shit.

Black People Love Us continues to gather attention. It's a bit unsubtle for my tastes but the pair who created have done plenty of interesting, if not downright hilarious stuff.

Sunday, November 17, 2002

Spooky. The other day a little booklet I picked up when I saw Down By Law appeared in the bedroom, no doubt as a result of the littlest cherubs penchant for getting into absolutely everything. Then, visiting The Onion, which is something I rarely do, I found a big article on the film. It's worth a look if you like the film, or even if you don't.

Scum Airways, is what they call the operation which transports some of Englands finest hooligans to away trips in Europe. The guy who runs it is an ex hooligan called Big Tommy. It's all a bit inspiring really.

Saturday, November 16, 2002

A fascinating glimpse into the lives of some of the 3000 children who make their home in the main railway station of Calcutta.

Thanks to Conquistador, at Sportsfilter, for this brilliant piece on an undercover New Jersey cop who first infiltrated the mafia, then became a baseball ref.

Barking Japanese flash thingy, found first on mefi, then realerted by fellow Bluenose, Squealy. This is an altogether more sophisticated use of the medium: Colour by numbers.

While this Santa swapping thingy isn't as philanthropic as the the book leaving thingy, whose name I forget, but is very cool, or as personal as say, mefi swap, I still think it is has the potential to be a bit of a giggle.

Porn movie titles, based on real movie titles. Smirkalicious.

A fair, balanced, and understated appreciation of Bush the younger.

Knife in the Water

Friday, November 15, 2002

Hmm, no Friday 5. I might do The Bluetitch 5 again later, see what other claptrap I can come up with. It's all true enough when I type it, but todays truth is not necessarily tomorrows, never mind yesterdays.

Have spent most of the day in the giant dustbin otherwise known as our local general hospital. I typed an almighty long piece about it but lost the bugger, and as my typing speed is about 25 words per minute, before I have to redo it all, I can't be arsed to go through it again. To precis: 3 year old daughter commenced treatment requiring general anaesthetic so unable to eat after midnight. Treatment took place at 3 pm 18 hours after her last food or drink. 5 hours in hospital for a ten minute procedure. 22 hours between meals. Waiting room in which we spent a completely unnneccessary 2 hours thirty minutes appalling and unsuitable for nippers. Waiting room measuring about 13 foot by 12 in which 4 post operative nippers and 9 adults waited 90 minutes abysmal. Nipper ok, me tired and pissed off. First of perhaps 10 treatments. Oh shit.

A very major thank you to Ragamuffin for this City Boylink. There was a time, in Birmingham at least, when they were were probably the biggest band in the world. Their following would put the Villa to shame and they played some absolutely storming gigs around the city. I once went to see The Sutherland Brothers and Quiver at the Odeon. I had no interest in them but City Boy were the support so went to see them for probably something like the twentieth time that year, thinking I was clever. I was not alone, I think the entire audience that night had turned out for City Boy. Apart from when The Damned supported T Rex at the same venue it is probably the only time there were more in the audience for the support than for the main act. I felt sorry for the Bros that night, when they came on half the audience just chanted for City Boy for about 15 minutes then left. I went soon after and there was only about 200 people left.
If the aforementioned Damned hadn't been and gone and released New Rose, City Boy would have been huge without a doubt. Poor buggers arrived just on the cusp and fell smack in the middle of two stools. Everything after their second album was pretty crap though, which probably didn't help.
The above gigs were both in 76 I think, so was the T Rex / Damned one. Also that year (I think) at the Odeon, I saw Third World, Black Uhuru (black someone or other anyway) Ry Cooder, Peter Frampton, Graham Parker, and Southside Johnny, Steve Harley plus many more. It was an eclectic year! And I walked out of Roxy Music at Bingley Hall in protest at their new disco tendencies, but that may have been the year before. None of the above takes account of bands I saw at Barbs and the various pubs and clubs like the top Rank who would have one off gigs. Jesus, these days I see about one band per decade.
The upside down in the atlantic guy ran Bingley Hall at the time. It burned down in suspicious circumstances.

Pluck Lawros tache. Scary and revolting.

Arse about with emoticons.

Thursday, November 14, 2002

Blog of the day

Cooking with Google. Never be stuck for a recipe again, type a couple of ingredients in and this thingy will search google for recipes. It's pretty good.

The Bluetitch 5;
1/ What is your favourite time of year?
I love Autumn but it represents death and decay really, so cannot be my favourite time. The image of crisp, bright autumnal days, full of colour, rarely happens anyway. The reality is wind rain and endless sogginess. I actually like the onset of winter. I love it when the nights draw in and the nights get chilly, allowing all sorts of cosiness; then there is Christmas and all the lead up to that with the excitement of the kids to look forward too. By February though I am ready to open a vein. Summer is just a pain apart from the couple of weeks you have off to actually relax, rather than become irrititated because it's too chuffin hot. Spring, definitely is my favourite time. Pre spring even, when the first snowdrops appear. Everything, all of a sudden, seems bright, and the world is filled with cheeriness and hope.
2/ What is your favourite meal?
Gawd knows, there are too many to choose from. Since my nipper has started playing football on Sunday morning and I have to stand out in all weathers like a dutiful dad, Mrs Buddha has availed herself of a map and located the kitchen. I have to say coming home, wet and cold and smelling Sunday dinner, not only cooked, but cooked well, by my chuffin Mrs, is unbeatable. There is always the dogs bollocks of apple pies to finish too, plus she makes a load of jelly for the nippers and chocolate cake. She is a marvel. So, Sunday dinner it is. I will have changed my mind in a minute. Fresh anchovies on oil soaked bread in some Spanish caff is a bit special too, if everything else is right.
3/ What is your favourite colour?
Well, it's got be blue, hasn't it.
4/ What is your favourite concert/gig that you have ever been to?
I can't bloody remember half of them. Most of the ones that stand out are small scale things by bands no has ever heard of. The first (of many) times that I saw Martin Stephenson, at the anglers club in Edgbaston, he just about blew my chuffin socks off. Clive Gregson and Christine Collister at the Junction in Harborne were special. The first time I saw the Specials in some student bar I thought finally, I was part of the world again. The sheer virtuosity and brillaince of Ry Cooder at the Odeon in about 1975 sticks in the mind, as do a couple of City Boy gigs at Barbarellas. Joe Jackson at Barbarellas, the night after Cheap Trick, was awesome, no one had heard of him and it was another night, thats all, but within 2 songs everyone had moved from the bar and just stood there, jaws agape. A brilliant 3 piece, I cannot believe they were ever as good again. Rezillos at Barbarellas were good as well. There must be thousands of others. The best though, the one that stands out above all the others, is Richard Hickox conducting a then unknown Bryn Terfel in Brittens War Requiem. I was supposed to be there with some woman but we had enacted our own little war in the afternoon so was on my own, feeling a bit tender and raw. I was within about 15 feet of the podium and to watch the interaction between Hickox and Terfel was something else.
5/ What is your favourite holiday destination
In general the Catalan coast, in particular, Llafranch.

Wednesday, November 13, 2002

Funny 404 page

Cat bowling. It's a cool game, I just got 93, is that good in bowling?

So, Slobodan Miselovic is a bit too poorly to continue with his trial at the moment. Poor wee dab. Nothing too trivial I hope.

Christine Hamm has a couple of new poems on her blog.

Polly Toynbee was one of the most robust liberal supporters of the war on Afghanistan. Does she still think we did the right thing?

I have posted about posh Nicaraguan revolutionary Gioconda Belli before, here she gives another interview.

I have tried to be good and not post too many Guardian links, but here we go, 3 in a row. Winston Silcott, who is due for release soon and who will almost certainly be the victim of a vile witch hunt, shares his thoughts.

Whoo chuffin hoo! The best news I have had in years. Now I can tell Mrs Buddha to put those two housebricks down.

My country loving fellow Bluenose, Hugh Mungus has complained on a football message board that I only answered 4 of The Bluetitch 5 but generously offers an alternative: do you believe in ghosts and have you ever seen one ?.
Well. Funny he should ask that. Last summer we rented a cottage on the Cardigan coast. It was a beautiful place, very olde worlde and unspoilt with all original features. Low beams, window seats, nooks and chuffing crannies everywhere.Very big and spacious. The owner had filled the place with hundreds and hundreds of books and toys from her nippers childhood, which must have been the sixties, and which we all loved. We had a woodland walk past a stunning waterfall to what amounted to a private beach and 2 other very good, very quiet, secluded beaches within minutes. We had beautiful mountains to the back of us, and within 20-30 minutes either way a bewildering array of beautiful beaches, coastal footpaths, towns, villages and scenery. A perfect spot, our days were filled from the minute we got up to the minute we arrived back, usually between about 8 and 10.
The kids naturally would be knackered, so would the Mrs and they would soon all be in the land of nod. Purely for the sake of making an incredibly cosy place even cosier we would get the coal fire going every night. The rest of em would be spark out and I would get the rocking chair (yes, chuffin rocking chair) close up to the fire and read for several hours, all the while quaffing a nice red and filling my face with crisps.
More than once, every night in fact, I had the feeling of an otherwordly presence. I am convinced I saw, several times, a ghostly, gossamer shape move from the stairs through a kids little play room into the kitchen. I am convinced of it.
I said nowt, assuming it was due to a combination of unaccustomed fresh air, tiredness and alcohol. Nor did I want to put the shits up Mrs Buddha, who can be a bit jumpy about these things. Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, we both said we could do with a little break and she said perhaps we could phone the owner of that cottage to see if there was any availability for a weekend. Of course it is haunted I said, jauntily. Ho Ho she chuckled and that was that. Later she asked if I had been serious, and I admitted my tale. She said she had felt the same thing from day one, and pointed out she did not go upstairs alone. The visitors book had a similar story in it.
Chuffin spooky man. I would go back there, but not on my own!

Garrison Keillor is pissed off with his elected representative. Seriously pissed off. It is chuffin marvelous to see a bit of passion, fair play to the dude... this is a Salon premium article but you can access it if you subject yourelf to a Mercedes ad.

Something very spooky just happened. When I clicked to see if the link worked, Hugh Mungus' ghost question appeared.

Tuesday, November 12, 2002

The next big thing will be Jesse Malin.

I have always tended towards the Rousseauist notion that man is born innately good. As I get older though and more cynical, and increasingly tired of having to deal with unneccessary shit resulting from simple anti social behaviour, I struggle to hold on to that view.
I haven't yet become Hobbesian but I am more inclined to believe that both views might have some merit. Naturally, innately, if you like, I would tend to disregard the sort of evolutionary psychology espoused by Steven Pinker, but I am becoming convinced. Anyway, you can't help but warm to a bloke so adept at pissing off left, right, centre and the God squad.
Good interview with him here, It has provided me with the perfect excuse when I am bollocked for being late with some piece of work or other, "It wasn’t me, it was my amygdala". I would recommend you do not try to read it while being assailed on all sides by over tired and hyperactive nippers.

Alien Tiles game. I am crap at it.

Legendary West Brom striker Jeff Astle was renowned for his heading ability. Unfortunately it killed him.

I have banged on about Simon Armitage and his poetry before. Here is an article by him on his relationship with Bob Dylan.

I am not surprised that US soldiers brutalised and humiliated terror suspects. I am not angered by it, or outraged, just saddened. No one should be treated like that, especially by people who claim to hold the moral high ground.

8 million stories in a New York minute.

Oh Bugger! Fat isn't good for you after all. Unless you are a drug company, then it's very good for you.

Warren Zevon talks to Rolling Stone.

Monday, November 11, 2002

Our canoe idles in the idling current
Of the tree and vine and rush enclosed
Backwater of a torpid midwestern stream;
Revolves slowly, and lodges in the glutted
Waterlilies. We are tired of paddling.
All afternoon we have climbed the weak current,
Up dim meanders, through woods and pastures,
Past muddy fords where the strong smell of cattle
Lay thick across the water; singing the songs
Of perfect, habitual motion; ski songs,

Nightherding songs, songs of the capstan walk,
The levee, and the roll of the voyageurs.
Tired of motion, of the rhythms of motion,
Tired of the sweet play of our interwoven strength,
We lie in each other's arms and let the palps
Of waterlily leaf and petal hold back
All motion in the heat thickened, drowsing air.
Sing to me softly, Westron Wynde, Ah the Syghes,
Mon coeur se recommend à vous, Phoebi Claro;
Sing the wandering erotic melodies
Of men and women gone seven hundred years,
Softly, your mouth close to my cheek.
Let our thighs lie entangled on the cushions,
Let your breasts in their thin cover
Hang pendant against my naked arms and throat;
Let your odorous hair fall across our eyes;
Kiss me with those subtle, melodic lips.
As I undress you, your pupils are black, wet,
Immense, and your skin ivory and humid.
Move softly, move hardly at all, part your thighs,
Take me slowly while our gnawing lips
Fumble against the humming blood in our throats.
Move softly, do not move at all, but hold me,
Deep, still, deep within you, while time slides away,
As the river slides beyond this lily bed,
And the thieving moments fuse and disappear
In our mortal, timeless flesh.


The web works it's magic again. Yesterday I had never heard of Kenneth Rexroth, today I am engaged in a frantic search to find anything I can, by, or about him. He seems to be a bit of a neglected genius, in this house anyway; I am probably the only bloke in the world who has managed to remain ignorant of him. Lots of very good stuff here. Of course clicking around trying to find stuff has taken me to many wonderful places, including the site from which I nicked the above photograph. There are loads more there, all for sale too if you are not short of a bob or three.
Tomorrow, I shall go into work and tell the fuck faced cowbag to cool her brains.
Amazon will never go broke while I have web access.

Swearing Xylophone. Very sweary. Very childish. Very funny.

The nominations for the Radio 3 awards for world music are out. Biographies, links and some tracks from the artists are available on the radio 3 site.

J.K Galbraith on the perils and costs of empire. Scary.

Interview with the dude responsible for my fighting technique is unstoppable; my new filing technique is unstoppable and the imperious, majestic, get your war on.


Sunday, November 10, 2002

I really like the Barefoot Doctor, I think he is a cool dude. I have tried all sorts of his techniques for various things and none of them work but I still like him; if I concentrated more they would probably work. The Observer has published a really long extract from his new book, but it doesn't seem to be available online. The Observer is always worth getting hold of anyway but this week it's worth a quid just for that.
His weekly articles are available.
Meditation techniques

This cat cracks me up.

I wonder what they would make of the Barefoot Doctor at The Sceptics Dictionary.

The mystery of time and space is brilliant, but liable to send you loopy.

The world of dancing cats

From 1995 to earlier this year, Paul Grivas took a disposable plastic camera with him everywhere he went, and he went to a lot of places. The results are astonishing.

Saturday, November 09, 2002

I am not generally a fan of cd's on magazine covers, I certainly wouldn't be tempted to buy a magazine just because it has a cd on, although I do buy magazines with such accoutrements. Uncut occasionally has something good on the cover, but not often, it's usually crap, good magazine though. There is an exception. The current edition of Wire has a double cd on the cover which celebrates 20 years of the magazines existence. It is brilliant, probably my album of the year, well worth buying the magazine for the cd alone.
£3.30. What a chuffin bargain. It has some seriously out there stuff on it and some seriously beautiful stuff and some seriously groovy stuff. The credit card is about to take another hammering. Some of the stuff it has on it is Wire, I had forgotten what a glorious cacophony they made, one of the best gigs I ever saw at Barbarellas was Wire.
Best of all though, it has a track by Liars, which glories in the best song title ever: "Grown men don't fall in the river just like that"

Mad items for sale. Makes me smile anyway.

Click to engage. Very simple, very cool, little shockwave thingys. I say simple, it's all relative of course.

No need to be bored ever again, you can play shoe, anywhere.

Is Vic there? The new Subway Sect album is supposed to be brilliant, but I haven't heard it. If its anything like as good as this interview with Vic Godard, it will be worth hearing. Be warned, you could easily get lost in all the links provided within that article. One of them pointed in the direction of Cowboys International. I had forgotten all about them, I used to love em. I'm sure I have a record of theirs in the garage.

First you build em up, then you knock em down. Collapsing teddy bears.

The White House provides full text of Bush's comments following the election reults. Made me smirk.

The great contrarian, Christopher Hitchens, gets some back.

I am happy now. Blogger seems to be working again, and I have found a list. A very poxy list it has to be said, but a list nevertheless. The BBC seems to have asked for a vote on the best songs from 50 years of the charts. This is what it came up with

Pete Townsend on the Kurt Cobain diaries.

I saw an interview with Damon Gough somewhere today, can't remember where, in which he is complimented on the sexiness of his new record. The boy acknowledges that his music is sexy and bemoans that this fact is often missed, because he is no oil painting. So I went back to the "The Hour of Bewilderbeast" It is much sexier than I thunk. Very sexy in fact.
Sexier than the sexiest sentence.

Friday, November 08, 2002

I don't know if it's to my credit or my shame that I can still get excited by some new music I hear, but I do anyway, not very often though. I have a new name to add to my recent rantings on the Likes of Manu Chao, Mariza, Ozomatli and the Pernice Brothers: Brendan Benson. I knew he was good from his Cardiff performance, but good gigs, especially by whippersnappers do not necessarily translate into good albums. His does. At one point it excited me as much as the Pernice Brothers did last year, but it's not as good as that, in truth. It is very, very good though, and is my constant companion in the car. He is touring the UK in small venues and is worth searching out, you will be able to say you were there when he was good in years to come, when he is a dinosaur.

A bipartisan anti war blog. While I have to applaud it really, I can't get on with it. Left and right should not be natural bedfellows, it is like agreeing with a Villa fan: unnatural and not to be encouraged. Worth a look though.

Not content with posing alternative Friday imponderables, Bluetitch is trying to get us all in the kitchen, I post her recipe as it came to me, looks like it's worth a try:
1 Packet of frozen summer fruits defrosted.
1 Large tub of greek unsweetened natural yoghurt
1 Small tub of double cream
Lots of soft brown sugar.
Empty defrosted summer fruits into a dish.
Mix yoghurt and cream together.
Pile on top of summer fruits but do not mix them together.
Sprinkle the sugar generously over the yoghurt and cream topping.
Leave to chill in fridge overnight.
The sugar should have "melted".
It doesn't look wonderfully attractive but tastes wonderful!!!!!

Unsurprisingly, I can't leave it at that. It has reminded me of a recipe so simple I forgot all about it, but someone who I rarely see asks for it every time I see her.
Loads of frozen raspberries
Couple of tubs mascarpone
Caster sugar
Tip raspberries into gratin dish
Give mascarpone a little whizz to soften then tip over berries
Top with sugar
Stick under very hot grill for a couple of minutes.
The cheese should be nice and warm and a bit runny, but berries still very cold. It's beautiful man.
You could macerate berries in Kirsch or some such, but it doesn't really need it.

The Friday Five.
I can see why there would be some excitement in the US about elections, but this weeks 5 doesn't inspire me.
1. Did you vote in your last elections?
Of course, although in the past I have deliberately spoilt a paper, you must vote, even if it's only to protest.
2. Do you know who your elected representatives are?
I know my MP, my Euro MP, my AM and my local councillor. Solid citizens every one of them. It is an honour and a privilege to have them represent me.
3. Have you ever contacted an elected representative? If so, what was it about?
No, but plenty of the hypocritical, self serving, spineless bastards contact me, frequently. This includes the current Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.
4. Have you ever participated in a demonstration?
Yep. of course. When I was a lad I was full of righteous anger and would spend my Saturday morning floggin left wing rags at Ladywood shopping centre, or, rather, being spat at and abused by skinheads while failing to sell any left wing rags. I would attend any demo going. Some of em were brilliant to tell the truth, just for the football style violence. I remember very well a fascist march that got stopped in Digbeth, or it could have been a pro I.R.A march that got stopped by fascists, it all becomes a blur. It was Digbeth anyway and very violent. As a matter of course I would go on anti Fascist demos at the rememberance day parade in London. These were well policed so quite safe. It could get a bit hairy on the way home stopping for a piddle though. There were many others.
There was one in Handsworth where all sorts of lefties had turned out to protest the presence of some Pakistani general. It was noticeable that it was all white, bearded well spoken folk taking over Handsworth with their megaphones and leaflets. Most Asians I tried to hand a leaflet to looked at me with contempt, and the truth is I had no idea why I was there that day.
The last march I went on was to protest at Clause 28, and that finished it for me. I was in Cardiff at the time, which is a small town rather than a city, so, unlike in Birmingham, everyone was recognisable. Recognisable from the anti vivisection league, the various Cuba, Nicaragua and El Salvador campaigns; any poxy little campaign that was happening in the cloistered world of the university. That day I thought fuck it, it's just a right of passage for the middle classes, who, like me in Handsworth, know nothing of the finer details. My marching days were over. I still had football though, until the middle classes took that over too. Viva a Revolution!
5. Have you ever volunteered in an election? What was the result?
When I was a young Militant, an entryist, I wandered around Edgbaston one night to encourage people to vote Labour. The few that answered the door did so only to tell me to fuck off. Told to fuck off for encouraging folk to vote for someone I did not believe in myself. Welcome to the land of Alice.

The Bluetitch Five. As imponderable as ever, but at least there are only 5.
1/ If you could go back in time to any period and place BEFORE you were born, where/when would it be?
See what I mean about imponderable, this is bloody impossible to answer, the old dear does like us to get our thinking caps on.
Time for a shameful admission. Back in the day, before punk, before anything really, when I was staill at school, aged about 13 I suppose, I really dug David Essex. Not Bowie or Eno or Ferry or the New York Dolls. David Essex. It was the gypsy look and ear ring I think. Maybe there was some latent homo eroticism there, he wasn't a puffy looking dude like Ferry or Bowie, but was pretty in his way, with his curls, but definitely a guy.. I got me ear pierced in 75, way before the mainstream, and the added shame is that Essex was my inspiration. The point being, at the time I loved the film, soundtrack and book of That'll Be The Day.. Even now, I want to be a greaser in a 1950's fairground.
Alternatively, there are the gangs in Coppolas 70's teen flicks, Rumblefish and the Outsiders also set in the 50's .
Looks like I want to have been a teenager in the fifties. Those dudes had it very lucky economically actually, but that's another story.
Shit. American Graffitti too. Bring back the fifties.

2/ You can be a 'fly on the wall' anywhere now. Where are you?
Another imponderable, invite yourself to be a fly on the wall for any moment in history. Still it's a piece of piss for those of who really know our history and our Calderwoods. I would be privy to the converstion between Freddie Goodwin and Willie Bell which resulted in the dropping of Steve Bryant and Jimmy Calderwood for the Fulham semi final replay in 75. Resulting in the defeat which led me to be involved in football violence in an a nakedly aggressive way for the only time.

3/ You have the chance to change one thing you have done in your life. What is it
Can't answer that, too hard.
4/ You have the chance to change one thing someone else has done in the past. What is it?
At the risk of sounding trite, I wouldn't have ordered British Forces to sink the Belgrano, killing several hundred young Argentine boys even though it was sailing away from trouble. Sorry, out of all of history, that is what first sprang to mind. Quite unnecesary slaughter. I don't pray but if I did it would be for their mothers.

5/ You have one last chance. The world ends in an hour from now. What would you do?
Finish my bottle.
Gather the family around in a big cuddle.
Weep copiously.

Thursday, November 07, 2002

Bloody hell. What a week. To top it all my littlest cherub did something to the pc as I switched it on and it's taken 5 and a half hours to get into the bloody thing. And I have just remembered it's only Thursday, which hasn't improved my mood.
What can I say about the multi talented Sarah, the eighth wonder of the world? I can't tell you what she did because I don't know what she did, but she did it, as it were. The whole thing had gone tits up and was going to stay that way, but she dug deep into my template and not only sorted the balls up out but generally improved things too. We don't even know each other. I am more grateful than I could possibly describe. Sarah, thank you.

Normal service will resume at some point soon I hope.

Given my obsessions with the mythology of New York and food, I wasn't about to pass by this NY Times article on Pizza.

Danny Provenzano is a New Jesey wise guy, or maybe he isn't. He is definitely a character.

Depressing but crucial photo journalism from Angola.

Plep posted a link to Malham and surrounding areas in North Yorkshire. It's worth a look I suppose if only for some nice photos of the area. I have very fond memories of the place because I once spent a week there as a 14 year old on a school field trip. I learnt a lot, though not much of it had anything to do with geography.

Any excuse to big up Manu Chao, this time in relation to his previous band Mano Negra. I noticed they have a compilation out in the US, well they have one available here too. If they had been a British or US band they would have been as big and important as The Clash or Nirvana. Well, the Specials anyway. This bloody internet costs me a fortune.

Tuesday, November 05, 2002

I have burnt me hand on a sparkler. It hurts like FUCK. Going for a cup of tea and lie down.

Monday, November 04, 2002

Whoops a bleeding daisy, I appear to have cocked up, big time. Good job it's only a bleeding blog.

Well, let this be a lesson to you, don't mess with things you don't undestand. Like HTML, for instance. Someone, who seems to be pretty amazing really, very kindly and selflessly sorted out the mess that was my assortment of links and whatnot, Christ knows how, and e mailed me the code. What she hadn't bargained for was my unrivalled capacity to be anything other than a clueless chuffin muppet. Anyway, it seems to be sort of sorted out now. Anything I posted before today is archived, (why? how? God knows, don't ask me). My links and what not are indeed much easier on the eye and still work and can be found waaaayy down the page.
An almighty big thanks to Sarah, who I shan't link to at this point. Despite my stupidity I am more grateful than you can imagine for your thoughts, your skill, your effort and your help. Anyone who believes in such stuff should send Karmic goodness her way, she deserves it.
I'm going for a cup of tea and a lie down.

Bleeding hell, it's like year zero on here, you will have to excuse me if I go a bit link crazy. As this seems to be the start of a new era I will commence with an article which is sports related but that I would recommend to anyone. A few weeks ago I posted some stuff about the British boxer, Ricky Hatton. I said he was brilliant at his game, but had some irritatng and alarming traits. In the end however, I decided he was probably a nice guy, not that it matters. Well, he is a very nice and humble guy, as are the rest of his family.

I posted this as long ago as, er, yesterday. In the circumstances it bears repeating. Falafel game.

I am almost embarrassed to admit my favourite poem is He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven, by Yeats but there you go.Yeats is one of my favourite poets, full stop, it's just that one particularly moves me. So thanks to y2karl at mefi for this pretty definitive link to his works.

Kevin Smith, is keeping an online diary while he shoots his new film. Good stuff.

I always liked Michael Foot, even when the right wing press ridiculed him as a bumbling, scruffy oaf and the left lambasted him for being too right wing. He always seemed to maintain a certain dignity through it all. Good interview with him here by Simon Hattenstone. Nice to see you can reach 90 and still retain all your faculties.

Richard Goldstein, in The Village Voice, takes on the lefty warmongers.

Once a Catholic. War on Iraq would shame the world. There goes the Catholic church again, heaping guilt on anyone who might happen to be passing by. Agree with the report though.

Sunday, November 03, 2002

Courtesy of Plep, a fascinating rogues gallery of mugshots taken by the West Midlands police in the 1880's and beyond.

Some interesting stuff on inequality in the U.S.A.

Google appears to be down, as does Blogger. I never realised how much I had come to rely on Google. I am bereft.

The Christian Science Monitor covered the recent Iraqi referendum. While it was there it sought the views of those who would otherwise remain unheard. Interesting stuff, no way of knowing how widespread dissent is though.

The war on terror is far from won. Never fear though, Bush has a secret army who will win it for us.

Falafel game.
I have a bit of a reputation at work for being a little outspoken, outrageous even. If something needs saying, I can't help myself, it gets said. If something doesn't need saying, I will blurt it out anyway. My Mrs calls me the Johnny Vegas of the profession. I am not sure she means it as a compliment, but I will take it as one. Here is an interview with Johnny about holidays at Butlins.

3 beautiful points, they will come in very handy.

Friday, November 01, 2002

See if you can get the sled through the ring of fire.

Joel Veitch kitten tribute to DJ Jam Master.

The Friday 5, despite the massive potential for rambling I shall desist.
1. Were you raised in a particular religious faith?
I was brought up a Catholic and attended Catholic schools. Church on Sunday was mandatory, or at least the leaving of the house pretending to be going to church was mandatory. Sometimes we would get caught out as the old man would ask what mass we had been to and we would say the same one he had been too, and he would point out he hadn't seen us there, then he would be in a monstrous mood.

2. Do you still practice that faith? Why or why not?

No I don't, I never really did. I never believed in God, although I was in absolute terror of him anyway. I would never practice Catholicism I think it is a monstrously negative religion, completely based on fear. If I played up the bastard priests and teachers would tell me my mom was watching everything I did. They said God and my mom could read my thoughts, for fucks sake! So, even if I thought bad things, God and the old lady would see, if I did bad things; likewise. I heard this shit from the age of about 5, maybe earler from the priests. It is tantamount to abuse. What kind of an evil git would terrify a child like that: your dead mother is watching your every move sonny, so shape up. Christ on a bike. Given what we now now about the Catholic church, not just the abuse, Opus Dei as well, I am convinced it is evil. Except I don't believe in evil as a concept, but that is another story.

3. What do you think happens after death?
We burn, or rot. So we should make the best of the one life we have.

4. What is your favorite religious ritual (participating in or just observing)?
I despise all religious rituals.

5. Do you believe people are basically good?
Like Rousseau, I believe we are born innately good and are corrupted by society. Or religion.

Steve Bell on the conservatives.

Bluetitch, the old dear, has taken herself off to try and rediscover her youth, it seems. Not to worry, Hugh Mungus has come up with an alternative Friday 5, and it's pretty good. You just wouldn't get this camaraderie and comradeship from Villa fans.
1/ Where would you like to die most :
Old, in bed, painlessly, smiling.
2/ You had to be a native of any country not in UK , where ?
Piddle of piss this one Spain.
3/ If you could uninvent anything non life threatening what would it be ?
Religion, although that is very hazardous to the lives of millions so it's a wrong answer I suppose.
4/ Best idea , you've never gone through with ?
This is a very boring answer I am afraid. When I finished my degree I had the opportunity to spend a year at the Cardiff School of Journalism, but would have had to fund myself. Or, I could have done a one year conversion course to law. My Mrs at the time would have worked to see me through either, but I declined. Instead I worked for a year then got very well funded by the home office to do a two year course qualifying in my current career. Very bad move, should have gone with the first option.
5/ Most violent thing you've ever done ?
I heve never really done anything very violent. When I got into scraps as a nipper I was more interested in self preservation than hurting the other kid. I really had no interest in inflicting pain on others, probably because I knew God and the old lady were omniscient and I would spend the hereafter atoning for my sins in chuffin purgatory. Likewise in the golden era of hooliganism, I was always one of the many running around on the periphery, not one of the few doing any actual fighting. I have had it on good authority though, that emotionally, I am a mean motherfucker.
Being a protege of Bluetitch, Mr Mungus cannot stick to five.
What is the biggest waste of money you have ever made ?
Polyphonic Spree, without a shadow of a doubt.

I needed some respite from the psychological warfare I am engaged in with my fuck faced gaffer today, so booked a day off. One nipper in school, one at Grans and the littlest darling no one would be crazy enough to look after, not for all the tea in China. So me and the Mrs and the cherub headed off, very early to Cardiff. Me and Mrs Buddha hardly see each other these days, we both work and between that and collecting the nippers from their various locations then gettin them out and back again to and from their various extra curricular activities, not to mention all the humdrum but exhausting household tasks, we have become a little estranged from one another. Today we had about 4 hours just for ourselves and the littlest one. And we found each other again, remembered why we love each other so much, not loved, love. I am lucky man, but then she is a lucky woman.

To misquote, Goodfellas my big brother, who is supposed to look after me a little bit, is being an unconscionable pain in the ass.

I lied, there is a ritual I love. Nine carols and lessons from Kings on Christmas Eve. It's not really religious though, more symbolic of religion. But it transcends bullshit , it's not the songs, its not the fact that it is the upper middle class at worship, it is an expression of joy. And that will do for me, the rest of us can contribute what we like, nobody cares. Thanks Sarah