Thursday, December 31, 2009
She'd told the NHS to stick their Caesarean section and waddled home again .,., she doesn't have time for a 6-week recovery with 4-other kids and a business to run she explained, and she'd had 8 pounders before so a 9 pound odds would be a case of grinning & bearing it !
Ouch as they say !
Anyway they decided ( her & her man ) that the house needed to be completely changed round, yet again !! The biggest boy ( 12 ) needed to either share with his little brother (4) or move into a smaller room so that two others could have his bigger room !!
He'd opted for the Greta Garbo "I vant to be alone" route so ,,, this gave them a problem !
The smaller place had been a child's bedroom and the daughter ( among her many other talents ) being something of an artist had done a 4-wall mural of dinasaurs et al floor to ceiling !
Very, very good they were but definitely NOT a 12-year old's dream decor !
So, I was sent with the almost teen to the wallpaper shop while mother went to the Queen Mum's place for her latest baby scan .,.,., only to be asked on our return if I could just paper the room TODAY ,,, like eh, 30th. Dec. just when I'm planning a lazy day in front of the TV with maybe a wee refreshment or three !
So we started at 4-30pm, me & my faithful paster assistant .,.,
Then in the middle of the job came the UPPER referred to in the title .,.,
With one & a half walls completed we were shouted down for dinner .,., and tonight it was the turn of the said 12-year old to prepare .,., He made us possibly the best Lasagne I've ever tasted .,., his 9, well almost 10 year old sister prepared the salad ,,, and together they also produced a huge bowl of delicious home made chips and a couple of garlic bread baguettes .,.,., Now this was no small undertaking ,, this was a meal for EIGHT !!
I now begin to see the logic light at the end of the daughter's tunnel .,., a use for all these we'ans my daughter keeps producing .,.,.,
If they are so well trained in the art of cookery at this stage, then by the time they're finished they'll have a full compliment of Butler, Chefs, House Maids ,,, the lot, for their old age !
We were later brought drinks at the work place but I suspect ,, just to ensure we'd finish the job !! And so we did ,,, at 11-45pm !!
Home, knackered, large whisky & bed followed in quick succession ,,,
Thankfully that's ALL the rooms ( in that house ! ) finished .,., for the moment ???
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Child number FIVE is imminent ! Yeah that was FIVE, it wasn't a misprint or anything ! I'm what's called a Super Pumpa ( that's Gramps to all you who don't know such words ).,.,
" Where has she gone ( the latest baked bean is another girl btw .,., it was either that or another boy of course !) .,., there's only 2/5ths. of the we'an left in your belly ( and if that's only 2/5ths. of it, all I can say is ,, Jesus !! ) .,., the rest is somewhere down in your pelvic region !! "
So she says " a new year baby then ?"
"Ha, what makes you think you'll last that long ?" says the good Doc ( who incidentally specialised(s) in gynaecology so presumably knows a near thing when he sees one ! ,, although it does give ME a little cause for concern when I go see him !! )
So anyway, the beloved & I are now preparing ourselves for a house full of little people when the Bells finally come in ( what a daft expression, there's nae bells comin' in here ,, no' enough room ! ) at midnight tomorrow !! Well we can hardly leave the other 4 out in the street now can we ?
Who knows, at the rate they shove these poor new mothers back out of the maternity NHS bed we'll be lucky if we don't have all five here complete with the new again maw & paw !
I really must get round to explaining to this child of mine what's causing all these we'ans to keep turning up !
Thursday, December 24, 2009
I don't do resolutions any more ( impossible to keep at this time of the year aren't they ? )
So this year I'm not doing any again !
I would like to go back on my Atkins diet but later ,, maybe Feb. ,,, for I've gone back up a size again ,, I crept up a few years back to 17-of our Scottish stones !! It happened so slowly & gradually that I almost didn't notice but latterly the underpants began to nip ,,, Then I knew ! Extra large into large just doesn't go !
A mere few months later ( well ok, about 8 or 9 ) I was back to my svelt, super fit, fighting weight of 13 and a small quarter.
And so easy ,,, no hunger whatsoever ,, gone was the belly, and inches lost everywhere else too ,,
Now, a year or two on and I'm halfway back to that dreaded heavy weight division ,,, not my fighting weight at all ,, in fact it's almost my knock-out weight !
I'm hitting the scales currently at 15 and a half of these same Scottish stones ,, but now they feel more like bricks ! And the man bits are nipping again ,,, so it's either commando, new underwear, or the diet ? I'm not a natural soldier, so Doc A ,, hold the bread, potatoes, & beer .,., here I come !!
Monday, December 14, 2009
His many misdemeanours are jumping out to bite him on the bum on an almost daily basis !
I can only say ,, what the hell did the stupid bugger expect ?
However, you think as the first Sports Billionaire he should worry ?? Ha ,., he'll surely be financially sound for life, even if he's now hounded out of the game ?
But wait ,,, half of that billion might get to the poor used little woman & the kids ? I'm sure her ( very good ) lawyers will get the miserly $30 pre nup rescinded in favour of a proper share for a woman done wrong ?
Saturday, December 12, 2009
The world must be coming to an end right enough ?
How will anything ever be the same again ?
I can't believe what I'm reading here ,,, is it Tiger Woods stepping down, leaving Golf for an "indefinite period" after the revelations of his 11- affairs !! ?
( Wow, talk about stamina, fitness .,., phew, all that shagging and STILL winning practically every tournament in golf .,., Tiger IS Superman surely !! .,., aye but the wife's found that green Kryptonite )
Naw, it's much more serious than that !
Heather the Weather is leaving the BBC "to pursue fresh projects in the fields of science and education." Jesus, as auld Arthur Montford would have said ,, It's a Disaster ! However will I know what conditions to expect on the golf course of a morning .,.,., Apparently Heather's duties will probably pass to wee thingy, Gail McGrane ... sorry hen, nothin' personal but you're no' fur me .,., I'm off to start a new affair myself now ,, with that sexy new weather stripper ( Oops sorry, wishful thinking ! ) eh, her with the tight skirts, the hair up ( but ready to come down with a quick shake of the head ... ohhhhh ), the specs that you just know are part of the act ! oh and the figure of a oooh, eh, nice big girl !!
Welcome juicy Judith and I will try and listen to your weather reports as well !!
Friday, December 11, 2009
WHAT BLOODY BUDGET ??
We used to have ONE budget a year ,,
This budget ( in Dec. ? ) will be the THIRD this year if I'm not sadly mistaken ???
What are these bastards up to now ?,,, Just what makes them think they can get away with this multiple robbery ? It's not enough that they cheat, lie and rob us blind with their false expenses claims ,,, ( and btw WHY are none of them in JAIL yet ?? ) ,,, now they think they can have ANOTHER bloody budget at the drop of a hat ???
Well I've got news for them ,,,, make the best of it ya shower of low life CHUMPS for it's your last !
Sunday, November 29, 2009
I've read a lot of book ,,, a brilliant page turner that I'm almost finished now ,, but of course I want the joy of the actual finishing read in bed ,, later ?
So ,,, I've watched footie on TV too ,,,
I've kept myself quietly "out of the way" in a corner of the room.
We're having visitors later today for dinner ( & drinkies of course ! ) Oh and to watch ( & listen to ) that damned concert again !!
This is the night I predicted in my earlier blog .,., J & S are coming to do Cliffie !!
OMG I'm thinking ,, not again ,,,Yawn ,,,, this'll be 31/2 times I've been subjected to this !!
Anyway, what crossed my mind & worthy of a blog mention I thought was ,,,
Have you ever watched these footie managers ,, ? well of course you have ,, the constant gum chewing the eyes popping, the red angry faces, the swearing at the ref ,, .,.,
Aye, all of that stuff you've seen before .,.,
But .,., Today was slightly different .,.,
I watched first the game Liverpool V Everton ,, a local derby no less .,., top billing !
Managers Raffa Benitez and David Moyes were there, on the touchline the whole game ,,, shouting, cajoling, shaking heads, chewing ,, AND getting soaking wet ! Yeah, it was absolutely chucking it down and there they were, standing out on the very edge of their permitted areas getting lashed on, one wore a silly baseball cap ,, and a shortie coat !! !
The beloved was making ready for her guests ,, ( well she's the Cliff fan not me ! ) hoovering, dusting, polishing, cleaning glass, changing bathroom towels ! setting the table, etc, etc, .,.,
So yep, I helped ,,, I watched the Chelsea V Arsenal game too !.,.,., another local derby !
Still pissing it down from the heavens ,, and another pair of crazy soaking wet managers running the line ???
This time Arsene Venger in shortie anorak, bare head .,., it had a hood but did he have the gumption to put it up ?? ( French, so with a head start on dumb ) and Carlo Ancelotti ( Italian so not far behind the Frog ? ) Versace coat with woolen beenie hat ,, such STYLE !! .,., and again both of them looking like droont rats long before the first goal was scored .,.,
Now these are supposedly (semi) intelligent human beings wouldn't you think .,., bloody high earners at least .,., and not one of the four with common sense enough to buy a BROLLIE ?? Eh ???
I noticed yesterday that the Clever One ,, ( might even have been called the Special One if yon good looking Portugese hadn't beaten him to it ! ), the manager of the century apparently, at least had the forsight and brains to get himself banned from the touchline for four games ,,, ie The Rainy Period !! What a guy ?
But then again what would you expect ,, He is SCOTTISH after all :-)
PS : I haven't mentioned to her .,., I'm off for a quick shower ,,, before the Real Madrid V Barcelona local derby game starts !! Tee-hee-hee .,.,., wonder if it's raining in Spain ??
Thursday, November 26, 2009
I read somewhere this week ( although I try hard never to look at such rubbish .,., See Al, I'm calming down ,, a few weeks back that would have been, such utter SHITE ! ) that that plastic titted ignoramus of a woman ? was getting paid £350,000 for carrying on like the fool she is and eating bugs in the jungle !! Jesus .,., save us from such stupidity !
I also saw, the same source obviously, that these two talentless little boys from the X-factor are now set to make £10 million in the next year .,.,., ?? For what for God's sake ?? They're not intelligent enough even to be let loose on children's TV .,., and I mean 2-year olds Tv ! I certainly wouldn't let any of my grandwe'ans watch them .,., lest they too become brainless by association !
These figures are absolutely disgusting .,., I worked ( and bloody hard ) for 40 years and never came anywhere near to having £350 K, let alone £10 M in the bank on retiring !!
What kind of message is this sending to our young folks ? Study, work hard, get a Uni degree ?? I don't think so .,., Bum about with your Hoodie pals, queue up with all the other idiots and get onto X-factor or some such garbage "show" .,., make a total arse of yourself and live like a King ,, well for a month or two anyway !
Simon Cowell and his like should be hounded out of the country .,., they are DUMBING DOWN our youth ! And of course our equally dumb & useless Government lets this happen .,., over & over ,, witness for example how our TV screens have been taken over .,., Gambling stations are impossible to avoid .,., poker, blackjack, roulette are now work substitutes apparently !
Talent-less shows mug us at every turn ,,, and poison our children's minds .,.,
God help us !! We are en route to Sodom & Gomorrah !
It really is time the silent majority got their act together and put a halt to this awful state of affairs !
Let's get that pendulum swinging back to real values, before it's too late .,., or have the Loonies already taken over the Asylum ?
Monday, November 23, 2009
That'll test the age group of my readers right away !!
Last night the beloved had her pal over .,., the pal is a die-hard Cliff fan ,, ( sorry SIR Cliff !! )
As a teenager the beloved was too but laterly she saw the light !
You remember Cliffie ,, The Move It / Travelling Light man ( who can't ! .,., hasn't a synchronised move in his whole body in fact )
Well topping off many, many expensive tour nights together they went to see The Final Reunion Tour .,., only Cliff & the Shadows .,., a snip at only £60 each !! Off their bloody heads doesn't quite describe my opinion of this expense ?
Anyway, no sooner had that been spent when she, the beloved , spends another £12-99 on the Cd of the show .,., "well I've got every other record he ever made ,, so I'm not wasting my collection now !" Then, to add insult to my injury, next came the DVD of the show !! ( another £15 or so I expect ) They could live it all over again .,., ad nauseam ( picture two fingers down my throat at this point ! )
Now y'all may remember I was fighting the good fight a few weeks back with Kev re my new cinema sound system and their faulty Sub Woofer ? Well I finally got a new replacement unit ,,,,
it arrived the very day Cliff & the Shadows DVD jumped through the letterbox !! Lucky or what ?
So I got to hear it ,, all 2 hours of it .,., just to check out the new Woofer you understand ! and hey, it was not at all bad ,,, !!
Oh good she says ,, we'll watch it again when Maggie comes .,.,
And so last night I got to watch it all over again ,,, at concert hall volume too ,,, what the neighbours must think ,, apart from, Poor Dougie, she's doing it to him again !!
Now our pals J & S are scheduled to come round for a Chinese Take-Away / Drinkies .,., and a night with Cliffie !! Hell mend them ,, they also went to the SECC concert !
My final comment .,.,.,
Saturday, November 14, 2009
We have quite a few friends, the beloved & I,,, perhaps on an individual basis, me more than she since I socialise at the golf club ! and she tends to socialise with her Wii during that time !
However our "couple" friends fall into quite diverse catagories .,., ( and seldom do we mix them .,., now isn't that strange ? ) Some happy with life and others ,, well not so !
But what got me going on this subject was this .,., some of our friends have, over the years, become increasingly angry and bitter ! Not necessarily with one another but with life in general ,, the daily grind of listening to our exasperating politicians, reading newspapers, watching TV current affairs ,,, lack of jobs, drug ridden teens, ( and others ) wars, religious fanatics ,, and on & on ,, Even herself & I have become somewhat angry old codgers at the stupidities we bump into on a weekly basis !
So much of our country has been given away, so much normal childhood fun now also gone .,., such a dumbing down of our once proud Nation ,,
Here, read this ,, just as a fun example of some of the kinda things that have gone wrong .,.,.,
This is simply a CONGRATULATIONS to all my friends & family who were born & raised in the 1940's, 50's, & 60's !
Firstly, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us and lived in houses made of asbestos..
They took aspirin, ate blue cheese, raw egg products, loads of bacon and processed meat, tuna from a can, and didn't get tested for diabetes or cervical cancer.
Then after that trauma, our baby cots were covered with bright colored lead-based paints.
We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets or shoes, not to mention, the risks we took hitchhiking.
As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.
We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle.
Take away food was limited to fish and chips,.,., no pizza shops, McDonalds, KFC, or Subways ( except of course Glesca's Clockwork Orange )
Even though all the shops closed at 6.00pm and didn't open on the weekends, somehow we didn't starve to death !
We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE actually died from this.
We could collect old drink bottles and cash them in at the corner store and buy Toffees, Gobstoppers, Bubble Gum and some bangers to blow up frogs with.
We ate cupcakes, white bread and real butter and drank soft drinks with sugar in it, but we weren't overweight because......WE WERE ALWAYS OUTSIDE PLAYING !!
We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on.
No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K.
We would spend hours building our go-carts out of old prams and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. We built tree houses and dens and played in river beds with matchbox cars.
We had no Playstations, Nintendo Wii, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 999 channels on SKY,
no video/dvd films, no mobile phones, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms ........... WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them !
We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no Lawsuits from these accidents.
Only girls had pierced ears!
We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.
You could only buy Easter Eggs and Hot Cross Buns at Easter time...
We were given air guns and catapults for our 10th. birthdays,
We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just yelled for them !
Mum didn't have to go to work to help dad make ends meet !
RUGBY and CRICKET had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that !! Getting into the team was based on MERIT ....
Our teachers used to hit us with canes and gym shoes and bully’s always ruled the playground at school.
The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of.
They actually sided with the law!
Our parents didn't invent stupid names for their kids like 'Kiora' and 'Blade' and 'Ridge' and 'Vanilla'
We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned HOW TO DEAL WITH IT ALL !
All this was commonplace before the lawyers and the government regulated the LIFE out of our lives for our own good !
But the end result of all this is my worry ,, we now have a huge number of silver haired angry old pensioners. It was never anything like as bad in my parents time ,,, sure they thought all we teenagers were quite mad, .,., I mean Elvis Presley and his gyrating pelvis .,., Zoot suits & DA haircuts ,, etc,
But the gap betwixt us oldies and our youngies is growing ( and in some cases festering? )
Back to our friends .,.,., some of them are now in such a state that they let this anger rule their daily lives from dawn 'til dusk ! They make vicious comment on everything they see wrong with today's world .,., and here's the rub ,, sometimes antagonsing their very own nearest & dearest ! ,, we know one couple who, because of this antagonisation, have now lost all contact with their son, daughter-in-law & grandchild ! Very very sad indeed ,,,
None of our other friends have gone down this road ,, not this far at any rate ,, but now doing a study of all of them has helped me, and hopefully now the beloved too, to get out of this grumbling habit.
It is positively ( or do I mean negatively ? ) destructive and serves no real purpose .,., our happier friends don't give a toss .,., well that's not true either of course .,., they do, but refuse to let it change their personalities for the worse ... so from now on I'm not playing this game any more ,, I have all but given up on politics ,, reading papers and I refuse to watch current affairs on the dreadfully biased & insular BBC .
I will of course complain when necessary and will give my opinion on world affairs when asked ,, but I am hereby giving up my Grumpy Old Man personna for the more outgoing happy-go-lucky model me !
Have a nice day y'all :-)
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
How does she do it ,,, ? I was giving the ball laldy and just couldn't make the green ??
Thursday, October 29, 2009
I had a very good thought for a blog topic just before dinner ,,, about an hour ago .,.,
Now ? ,,,, can't bloody remember what it was ?? Too busy this past week or so ,,,
I've been losing my cool with some "suppliers" ,,,
Why is nothing made properly these days ,, ?
Every damn thing needs taking back & changed !
However I am having a good run of "successes" this past wee while ( ie, rubbish goods & services that I've managed to get replacements or money back from ! )
Here's the list ,,, so far !
British Rail , PC World ( for Epson ), Superfi ( for Kef ), B & Q ( late delivery & microvave problem), Egg ( credit card problem ) Earrings & Necklace problem ( not mine I hasten to add ! ) and faulty new Golf Bag !
But it's such a drag having to pursue these people ,,,, how much better if they just GOT IT RIGHT to start with ?
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
The news report last night ( I tried so hard not to hear it ) of the little girl 'phoning for help as she died in a blaze .,., reportedly started by her father ! If he did then there is no sentence the courts can pass that will ever fit his crime .,., I sentence him to rot slowly in Hell for all eternity.
This is yet another death by fire which seems to have plagued my life for as long as I can remember.
I make no apology for lifting this story excerpt from my own book and blogging it this morning ....
Then there was the day, or was it the night ? ------ yes it was definitely the late evening, and one I’ll never, ever forget …….
We heard the screams first of all, loud and piercing and prolonged screams …. Awful screams …..
We thought at first, well I thought, that maybe someone was “carrying on“ ,,,,, some “ high jinx in the close “ , something like that …… then the thought that some people were fighting or ………… then finally, the sudden realization as the screams became even louder and more pain-filled, that someone was in real trouble …. and right outside our door, 3-stories up !!
Up each of the closes in Burgher St., three families lived on each “ landing “, with one communal outside toilet on the half landing . That was 12 families to the close ? ….. very bloody close we all became …. we stayed in the top flat, left as you climbed the stairs, right of course if you looked up from the street !
Jean Moore and her old dad stayed directly opposite us on the top floor. I can still see big Jean in her Rangers Scarf going to the football match on a Sat. afternoon … A big bruiser of a woman she was …. I think I even to this day still have a photograph of her just as I’ve described . But the Salt of the Earth .
Old Mrs. MacFedris stayed directly below us. She and her sister lived together, two old Lady-Buddies … and boy, did they suffer ! These were the two old dearies that used to have to put up with that budding football star and his coach , when dad and I played football up and down the lobby with the tanner ba’. Thinking back we really must have made a helluva din on top of these old souls ….. dad wasn’t exactly your light weight coach !!! and we would hoot and holler up and down the lobby for ages some nights …. no tv in those days either so we had to do our own thing ,,,,, make our own entertainment … and these were also the days of minimalist floor coverings ,,,, no wall to wall thick Axminster carpeting in this neck of the woods …… bare floorboards were the order of the day !! I can recall mum shouting at us to calm down some nights so I guess we must have been going at it .
Anyway to return to the story which, quite frankly, I’m not sure I can write, and I know I’m trying to avoid actually putting it down on paper …… some painful memories are perhaps better left dormant ?
I’ve spoken about this incident before, to people very close to me, but I’ve never seen it written down and I don’t know that I really want to .
The little girl was perhaps 5 or 6 , maybe as old as 7 but no more ---- she was 2 or 3 years younger than me, that’s all I can remember. She lived next door, in the middle flat .
How sad, I don’t even remember her name now ? I seem to recall an older sister and a mother but I don’t recall a father in that house somehow.
I can’t focus on her name or the family name ,,,,, I’m sure the trauma of it has made me block them out of my mind . I started to think about her again after my dad died …….. naturally …. but that’s another painful story for much later .
She had long, long black hair , that I remember, and she was wearing a long white nightie that fateful night. This I know absolutely. I can still see her .
The screams suddenly got louder as their door was thrown open and her mother started yelling for someone to help …..
“ Help ! help me , she’s burning ,” she cried.
Only then did we realize what was happening …… this seems to have taken an age to tell to this point but it all happened in seconds, from that first scream until we were all out on the landing .
If I live to be 100 I’ll never be able to forget that horror on the landing .
It simply won’t erase itself from my memory. It brings me to tears even reading this again.
The little girl was ablaze, from head to toe ----- her long beautiful hair was on fire and her face and head were in the middle of a raging inferno and she was jumping up and down on the spot, screaming and screaming and screaming ……. and oh God, screaming …
I couldn’t look, yet I couldn’t look away ,,,, I’d never witnessed anything so truly awful in my life before, nor since, and I never, ever want to again .
My mum pulled me to her apron and hid my face …… but still I witnessed the horror ….
My dad turned into an instant hero that night.
He pulled the loose carpet runner from our lobby ( fortunately not fitted or nailed down ) and dragged it onto the landing . He pulled the little girl down onto it, still screaming in terror and burning wildly ,,, the flames were about 3-feet above her head now, and all the way up his arms , ,,, he wrapped and rolled her in the carpet until the flames went out.
However, by the time that was done it was already too late --- the damage had been well and truly done …… her body and head burns were so severe that my little neighbour died, but not ‘til some 3 or 4 long, long painful days later . That’s another smell I can smell still ….. human flesh burning …..
I have absolutely no recollection of anything else that night, no ambulance, no medics, doctor, police ,,,,,, all of which must have happened ,,,,,, but to this day I can still see that little figure standing there totally engulfed in flames ,,, and I still hear her screammmmssss ,,, oh the screammmmmmsss …………..
It could have been yesterday ……….. it WAS yesterday … and today …. and tomorrow ….
This I guess is what affected me so badly when my dad died from the effects of that dammed fire . And again yesterday when I heard that news story .,.,
I couldn't sleep last night again.
I just hate fire so much .,., when I hear of anyone suffering a similar fate on the news it destroys yet another little part inside my soul .
Monday, October 19, 2009
Also click on this link & watch the video :
A coal mine, Freyming, in the Alsace Lorraine district, south east France, on the German border was having serious problems with a huge batch of our world famous underground Methane detectors, a semi portable combustible gas detector specifically designed for underground work.
Malcolm was to be the technical Whiz since this was a “Safety Division“ portable product.
I was to be the overseer, both technically and commercially ,,, the customer contact man and prime negotiator ,, ( not Malcolm’s forte ! )
Ronald Scott, our MD at the time, had advised me that this would be a huge challenge, since if these instruments had to be returned for full credit we would lose a fortune, and also lose all follow up sales in Europe to boot !!
Och no problem then, thinks me ,.,. gulp !!
Anyway off we set ( with barely a word of French between us I might add ! )
We arrived and were ensconced in a wee French hotel in the middle of nowhere, somewhat akin to a poor Travel Lodge type of thing !!
Next morning we were up with the lark and off to the Pit .,,. Introductions were made between us & the Mine Management personnel ( English speakers thank God ! ,, no need for our school boy French or translators ,, above ground at least ! ) We also met all the appropriate technical engineers who would be working with us, some of the miners using the equipment and of course the pit’s Lamp Man ! .,., he who dishes out safety helmet, Davy lamp, gas detectors etc, to the guys going underground for their 7-hour shift.
We were then taken to the Pit changing area to get kitted out for our first trip underground ( in France that is ,,, we had been down many other UK pits before this )
The sun was just coming up now for we’d set off very early to try catching the 6-am shift going down ,,, It was a typical late autumn, early winter morning in France ,, slightly misty, with the sun breaking through with great shafts of light coming in the windows.
I had expected a British style worker’s changing room with bench seats and lockers round the walls for our clothes etc ,,, but what I saw when I entered this ENORMOUS ( football stadium sized ) room was a sight that will never leave me ,,, it took my breath away ,, mine and Malcolm’s .,,. I looked around at eye level ,, body height ,,, no benches, no lockers ,,, ( we were alone in this room, the miners having already passed through ) then something drew our eyes upwards ,,,, a movement above us, the roof was a multitude of glass panels some 50-feet up ,, the sun was streaming in, in great wide shafts ,,, it took us a moment or two to focus ,,, then .,., all of a sudden, there they were ,,,
Bodies seemingly, dozens of them, swaying, ever so slowly turning, arms hanging limply by their sides, legs quite still, hanging 20-30 feet up in the air ,, on chains !! I couldn’t help myself ,,, “ Jesus Christ ! ” I shouted, “ what the hell is that “,,, then it all became clear ,,, These were the French Miner’s lockers in the sky .,.,., we quickly learned how to use this most ingenious but bloody scary contraption. The “body holder” ( in reality a fancy coat hanger with places for trousers, jackets, and even hats ,, ) was lowered on a long chain ,, you then proceeded to undress yourself ( standing up ! ) and dress the dumb waiter ,,, once you had donned your dungarees, boots etc, all your clothes & valuables were then hoisted up to whatever height you considered “safe”, where you then fastened a padlock through the chain, pocketing the key in a safe place in your dungarees, leaving your stuff dangling in the air till your return.
This is a sight I will truly never forget ! Oh that I had had my camera that week .,.,
Anyway, to cut a long story somewhat short ,,, Malcolm & I worked diligently for days on end down in the bowels of this pit, the deepest, muddiest and furthest train ride then walk to the lowest coal face I’ve ever seen, ( we were on our backs at some points at a 2-foot face ) trying to figure out the problem of these faulty instruments ,,, ( this was one of the Company’s most successful lines in preventing underground explosions so it was baffling that this French company ,,, one of the first to use them on the continent ,, was having such problems.
We monitored every unit going underground, checked it on it’s return, saw them being calibrated in the lab ,, everything ,,, and still the faults came ( instability, odd alarms ,,, ! )
Then came the long awaited breakthrough .,.,., first, we were very close to Hombourg Haut, my son-in-law’s ( at the time ! ) family home so I decided to take Malcolm for an evening visit to meet my French in-laws.
Secondly, André’s dad, wee Roland, was a very congenial host and plied us with the family's “Home Made Schnapps” as well as tales of when he himself worked in the very Mine we were investigating !! ( he had actually been Freyming's Lamp man years before ! ) Wow, What a small world I thought ,,,
Anyway, Annie & Roland fed us a splendid meal and home we eventually toddled to our sumptuous hotel ! ( NOT )
A few days later, about 10-days now into our visit, much more technical data taken and analysed, and more and more distraught calls from our home based MD, Ronald Scott, bemoaning our progress or lack of ,,, we hit the Mine for the mid morning shift changeover and were in the calibration lab when elevenses happened !
In comes the old Pit Lamp Man carrying a tray of drinks !! Eh ? Whit ?? The guys all have their little glass of “hooch” with their morning croissant ,, including me of course !! but not the dedicated Malcolm ,,, who carries on calibrating instrument after instrument ,,,
Shit, I suddenly think ,,, this is what my son-in-law's old man Roland had told us and we didn’t twig ,,, the Lamp man, with absolutely bugger all to do for the whole shift time the miners are underground, becomes the pit Schnapps Maker !! They have their own illegal distillery in practically every pit in France apparently ! .,., but I didn’t for a moment consider they might actually drink the stuff whilst calibrating their life saving instruments ( or prior to going underground !! )
Even yet it still hadn’t percolated through my sleep deprived brain ,, but as I swigged my drink and calibrated my next instrument it suddenly dawned ,, like a shaft of that great sunlight it hit me ,,, Malcolm missed it because he remained tee-total on the job !
For the non-technically minded among you , methane ( the potential underground danger gas ) is a simple hydrocarbon .,., alcohol is similarly a simple hydrocarbon ,,,, the instruments being zeroed on pure nitrogen of course, and then spanned ( calibrated to correctly read explosive levels of methane gas ) were being confused and incorrectly zeroed because of the hydrocarbon gas on the lab technician’s breath ! ( and similarly later underground on the miners breath ! )
I proved this to myself by simply breathing up close to the instrument sensor and then called out to Malcolm “ Pack your suitcase ,.,. We’re going home my son “
An afternoon of discussions with the Mine Management, a call to Ronald ( who practically kissed me thro’ the phone and was forever after grateful ) and we were on our way ,,, but not before the very grateful and relieved Mine Manager ( for it was he who had specified using the MSA instruments and not a local alternative !! ) presented Malcolm and I with very special gifts. Mine was a hand painted Japanese water / Sake jug with 6-little drinking glasses ,,,, ( how appropriate was that !! ) .,., each glass with a different naked woman on the inside base who only shows when there is Sake or clear liquid in the glass ,,,
I still have it to this day ! I don’t remember what he gave Malcolm .,., something different but equally unique !!
I rather think however, we were not quite as popular in the Lab or down the pit because a stop was immediately put on their mid morn hooch habit !!
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Don't worry Thomas, it was all pretty positive !
We were kinda doin' a comparison twixt the old & the new .,., and really it wasn't the sons -in-law, but the Maws & Paws in-law who were being compared.
First off we had one of the salt-of-the-earth .,., little Roland, the Coal Miner .,., I had stuff in common with the wee man from Hombourg-Haut, having spent much of my own working life in the pursuit of underground life saving instrumentation. I even spent the best part of 2-weeks working in his Pit in France investigating peculiarly French problems ! ( something for another blog perhaps )
Then we got Peter, the absent minded Professor ... now Peter & I have little in common, work wise, even less belief wise, for Peter is a University Prof. of Theology & Divinity, but that aside he's a helluva guy and we get on like long lost brothers !
Roland, in his own quiet way was a fun wee man .,., alas, sadly now gone, both from our family and from this mortal coil ,,
Peter could never be descibed as a wee guy ,, more something of a man mountain ,, but both these guys enjoy(ed) good company & good whisky .,.,., In different circumstances I could actually see them also get on well together !
In France the Mother-in-law to my dear daughter was like a real mother, but more of a granny in both age & attitude to her beloved #2 son. Annie never worked outside the home ,,, but she did more than her fair share in children & culinary duties. A lovely old lady. I miss her.
Now there is Brita, who never stopped working ,,, and what fame she brings to the family ,, first ever Lady Minister of Religion in all of Denmark ,, Brita has now been forced from her beloved Church & into retirement ,, and she's finding it hard ! ( I must introduce this woman to Golf ! )
Like our sorely missed Angela ( our son's Ma-in-law) Both women in their own way are gems .,., I'm so happy to have known them .,., but I also wonder now, after the divorce & re-marriage, what they all think of us ,, the other side of the coin ?
Anyway, getting back to the first thought .,., not surprisingly, since the daughter chose them both, there are similarities betwixt the sons-in-law past & present .,.,
Both are absolute NERDS !! but there is a very fundamental difference .,., which I now see daily. The 2nd. ( and hopefully the last ! ) has brought the joy back into my daughter's life .,., his love for her shines like a beacon in the fog .,.,
Thomas/Phyllis, you need do no more than love each other this way, always, and you'll be the happiest of people.
What was daftie's crime ? He jokingly said his dance partner looked like a "Paki" after a tanning session. Now here's the rub, according to my beloved !
Since Anton's lovely Moroccan woman partner took such umbridge to this remark .,., ie, insulted to be called a "Paki" .,., then surely it's HER who's the racist ,, not the obviously joking dancer ?? Good point my dear .,., I couldn't agree more .,.,
Get her some security quick !! The Loonies might have worked this out too !!
Friday, October 16, 2009
He read the obligatory information leaflet dutifully, and as always there was a long list of possible side effects, which finished with, ‘In extremely rare circumstances deaths have been reported’.
The leaflet then went on to advise, in bold letters, ‘If any of the above happen to you, stop taking Augmentin and see your doctor straight away’ !!
ie, see the Doctor right away if you die.
THIS is toilet humour at its very best ! A guy from Charlotte, North Carolina, wrote : “I have a friend who was once a toilet attendant in London Kings Cross station and I asked him what the job was really like. ‘It’s murder, ’ he said. ‘Ye get awe the weirdos in. Pimps, transsexuals, glue sniffers, drug addicts, drunks, tramps…the list goes on and on and on’.
“He finished with, ‘Matter of fact, when someone comes in for an honest tae goodness shite it’s like a breath of fresh air’.”
Hahahaha, sniff that for a lavvy laugh !
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Sunday, October 04, 2009
Hope I can show you it here ,,
Now this is what I call DANCING !
And all done in one take, first time !!
As Mr. Sinatra says ,, You'll never see the likes of this again ,..,
And look ! Eleanor Powell can do it fully clothed !
Eat your heart out Craig Revell Horwood, Bruno Tonioli and your gang of rank amateurs !
Sorry, of course I mean, read this if you will !
Football, Golf, Cricket, Rugby ( both kinds ,, oh & French ! ) .,.,., No it doesn't finish there .,., keep going ! Please ...
Snooker, Pool, Motor Racing, Motorcycling, Horse Racing, Greyhound Racing, Boxing, The Ultimate Fighter, Tennis, Athletics, .,., Bowls, Ten-Pin Bowling even .,.,., and there's more !
Now we have American Football ( a misnomer if ever I heard one ), Karting, Tightlines, Angling ( I know it's supposed to be the most participated-in sport of all time but honestly ,, who cares ? )
Then there's Watersports ?, Hell in a Cell ? (Cage Fighters ), Wild Spirits, Raw, Smackdown, Max Power, Hockey, Ice Hockey, Rallying, ???
Up next are Russian/Spanish/German/Dutch /Portugese football, Ozzie football ( another misnomer ? ) Extreme Wrestling, Yachting, Sailing, Power Boating, Speedway, Darts, ( isn't this just Beer Drinking under another name ? ) Surfing, Kiteboarding, Poker ( Card gambling is SPORT ? and worth watching ??? ) Aerobics, Polo, Beach Polo, Modern Pentathlon, Basketball, Netball, Freeride Spirit ?, Judo Action, Mountain Biking, Show Jumping, Squash, Baseball,
On top of all that we have Transworld Sport, Premier League World, Ajax / Bayern/ Barca/Real Madrid /Man U/ Liverpool/Rangers/Celtic TV, and still it goes on ,,,
It's Sports ad nauseam ,,, 80% of which is MINORITY sports, not in the least interest to anyone on the bloody planet ?
And for these" Murdoch having a laugh " offerings we pay £55 a month ! And the bastard has the gall to throw in, at no extra charge, but real extra annoyance,,, an AVERAGE 20- adverts every 10-bloody minutes.
How does he get away with it ?? I'll tell you how !
BECAUSE WE DON'T ALL STAND UP AND TELL HIM .,.,.,.,
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH .,.,., STICK YOUR SKY SPORTS UP YOUR ARSE !
( withdraw our monthly subscriptions & stop paying for this shite ! )
Saturday, October 03, 2009
( Hey ! Do I know how to treat a girl or what ? )
Anyway, there we were, chomping away, ready for a quiet night by the fireside watching Tv ( this can be translated fairly easily into snoozing in the armchair while the Tv plays to itself ! )
When all of a sudden the back door opens and in walks the daughter, her man and the we'an, Anna-bits ? Hi, shouts Big Tam ,,, ( Me thinks ) What the ,,, ( but says ) Oh Hello peops ,,
They take off their jackets, the we'an's outer clothes and sit themselves down.
I begin to think to myself ,,, Oh help, what's up ,,, why are they here at this time of night ,, what news have they got for us ,,, Has Thomas landed a big contract ? Have they come to celebrate ?,, Has Thomas lost a big contract ? Are they here for succour and comfort ?,, To drown their sorrows ? What ??
I look again and Phyl looks quite upbeat ,, in fact now that I check out her face for signs of ,, something ,, I see she is made up ,, lippie on , hair all nice ,, Mmmmm it's a celebration then ,,
Can't have come to tell us she's pregnant ,, already done that !
Ok ,, I take the last mouthful of my fish and the remaining solitary chip ,, I chew a little and form the question in my mind ,,
It comes out wrong ,,
"So" I says ,, "to what do we owe the pleasure of this strange time of night visit ?"
Eh, they say in unison, looking at one another with that ,,, What are these old tossers on look ,,, we're off out for the night ,, you're baby-sitting ,, don't you remember ?
You promised about a fortnight ago ??? Ahhh !
Well, then it all comes out in the washing .,., The Beloved ,, all by herself and and completely unbeknown to me ,, had promised to babysit but had subsequently completely forgotten all about it ,,,!! albeit she did say there was some little niggle going on in her head about the 2nd of Oct !! Like I said at the beginning ,, Auld age and all that !!
Anyway the young folks were going pubbing with an ex colleague in town ,, Phyl being preggers suggested she might come home alone early ( at the back of 9 to watch her fav celeb Barbra on the J Ross show ) and leave Thomas in the pub ... so we kept the we'an happy and out of bed 'til about 10pm ,,,, mummy didn't show so at that point me & Anna decided to have that wee snooze on the chair after all .,.,.,
Obviously they had a good night for the pregnant driver & the slightly less than sober dad arrived back to pick up their offspring around 1-30am !! Where they got to after pub shutting time I never actually found out ?
Sunday, September 27, 2009
I seem to have been 'phoning or writing complaining every damned day to somebody or other ! Now that's not like me, I'm really not a complaining kinda guy :-(
First it was the barely run-in Microwave .,., less than 6-months old and the internal light pops !
So I call B & Q for it was supplied by them as part of our new kitchen ,,, it's an integrated unit with no visible means of changing the bulb.
Wait for this .,., eventually, after some 4-calls they decide that they don't send out engineers to fix these things .,., so they've sent to SPAIN ,,, where the micowave was manufactured, for a new one !! So we're now having an engineer come to fit a NEW £130 unit because the light bulb has blown ! Now that's what I call Progress ? ( with a capital "P" !! .. aye and that stands for PISH !!)
Next the Printer .,., as y'all probably read already, Epson printers no longer accept any ink cartridges but their own .,., so after much growling & nashing of teeth I simply took this unit back to PC World and they exchanged it for yet another (upgraded ) printer. ( This is more progress of the '00's ?? )
Last Xmas I bought my beloved a nice ( and not too cheap ! ) pair of emerald earrings and a matching necklace. This month one of the earring posts broke off ,,, she had actually predicted this happening because the design of this post was not good & different to that advertised when I bought them ( online ).
So I wrote and asked ( nicely of course ) for a full refund since the said jewellery was not fit for purpose.
No probs ,, they said sorry for your bother, send the whole kit & kaboodle back and we'll refund your money. Ok, a result here ,,, and a philosophy for all Xmas's to come I'm thinking ?? Rent-a-pressie's for 9 or 10-months ,, send it back, get the money back in time for the next year's Xmas pressie !! You've cracked it son !!
Finally, my wonderful new sound system ,,, the big Sub Woofer started cracking and growling like a demented Big Cat ,,, so guess where it's headed ? Yep. back for repair/ replacement after only about 5-months light, intermittent use !!
So the final roundup looks like this :- Microwave ( Spanish ), Printer ( Japanese ), Jewellery ( British ) and Hi Fi speaker ( Chinese/British ),.,., all rubbish in one way or another .,., This simply wouldn't have happened in my working life .,.,
I guess with all of today's mind boggling techin-ology .,.,., standards are FALLING World-Wide ?? Now isn't that Real Progress ?
Saturday, September 26, 2009
The wee cocky Iranian, Ahmadinejad you really have to admire ?
For a wee guy he sure has balls !
He's happy ( it seems ) to take on the might of the USA & the Western world ( us included of course ) and tell them ( aye & us too ) just where we can shove our self righteous, holier-than-thou, hypocritically pious, sanctimonious smiles .,.,.,
And how can we, in all honesty, say that the wee guy's wrong ?
He's looking after his country's interests .,., looking out for #1
He may not do things the way we do but I repeat .,., what makes him all wrong and us all right ??
I've never been able to figure what gives us the right to have ( and continue to upgrade ) our Nuclear weapon arsenals ( in fact our WMD !) but tell them ( and others ) that they can't have any ?
Oh I forgot .,., we are more human than they are .,., Right ?
Or is it that our religious beliefs are much more sound than theirs then ?
Eh, we'd never imprison or torture our enemies, that must be it ?
C'mon .,., the wee guy definitely has a point here .,., somebody needs to sit down & talk to him instead of simply tossing around empty threats .,., for empty they are .,., unless of course we intend going the whole hog and Nuking Iran ???
For Christ's sake ( or should I say for Allah's sake ? ) let's get real here .,., after all the wee man says "manufacturing of WMD has never been on our agenda ".,., He might even be telling it like it is .,., they just need to generate power for industrial / domestic use ??
Aye right son ,, or maybe he just wants to have the same weaponry that his enemies have ? A very reasonable want .,., if you put yourself in his shoes ?
I wouldn't like to live in his country right enough .,., but I like this wee guy's swagger and the glint in his eye but most of all I admire the way he absolutely refuses to wear a TIE, wee dinner jacket or no', so there you go ,, he's a man after my own heart ( at least on the TIE front ! )
Friday, September 25, 2009
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
Tuesday, September 08, 2009
Monday, September 07, 2009
Friday, September 04, 2009
Thursday, September 03, 2009
Saturday, August 29, 2009
They can't all have forgotten surely ?
This is the good ole guy who was allegedly shagging ( sorry, having an affair with ! ) his campaign worker ( behind his wife's back ! ), the young & impressionable Mary Jo Kopechne, her who was in the car accident on Chappaquiddick Island, remember, the car he was driving .,., the one where he ran off and left her to die, trapped under the cold water.
The same guy who was thrown out of Harvard college for cheating !
Great Liberal Senator ? Not in my eyes he wasn't .,., not fit to tie the shoelaces of either of his brothers .,., even his parents compared him unfavourably with his older brothers .,.,nice folks eh ?
He enlisted in the US army and applied to join the Intelligence corps .,., after only 3-weeks he was thrown out of there too !
He used his Daddy's political connections to avoid being deployed to the Korean war .,.,
Liberal ? Yeah very, with his womanising, the truth and any kind of backbone !.,., and somewhat academically challenged to boot.
At least his wife saw him for what he was ,, she divorced the bum ,,
His Democratic challenger way back once said it all .,.,
" The office of US Senator should be merited ,, not inherited ! Had his name been Edward Moore ( instead of Edward Moore Kennedy ) his candidacy would have been considered a joke ! Don't you think that Teddy is one Kennedy too many ? "
Yep ,, me too !
Friday, August 28, 2009
It's not that they now take up almost equal time with the programmes .,., that's bad enough !
it's that they are the same ads repeated & repeated .,., in fact "ad" nauseam .,.,
On the Sports channels it's a constant bombardment of gambling ads .,., come play Bingo, poker, bet on this, that or the other .,.,
On other channels, we get a different batch but they are then repeated similarly time after time .,., dare I say it again ,, ad bloody nauseam !
Don't these imbeciles know that this kind of brain washing doesn't work .,., it simply gets people ANGRY ! Angry enough to now instantly shut off all adverts .,.,
I think it's now way past time for Government intervention .,., Brain Washing is not allowed in Western Civilised Society .,., this "rubbish" is acting against my civil liberties and I want it stopped .,., NOW !
Had I Elvis' money I'd shoot a TV set a day .,.,
Had I Bill Gates money I'd shoot a TV ad man a day !
Thursday, August 27, 2009
I'm writing .,., yeah still .,., a book or two ,, ok it's actually 4 now that I have on the go ,, yeah, simultaneously .,., DOH !
Anyway, the memory loss .,., oh yes ,, I keep my books "security passworded" so that their release to the world will be when I'm ready .,., but Jesus, for the past two days I've been sweating a bit .,., their release to the world looking like .,., eh, NEVER !
The ole memory bank ran out of funds .,., I couldn't, for the life of me, remember my password for 2 of them ! ( yeah stoopid I know ,, I have differnt passwords for different projects ! ) so for the last 48-hours I've been typing in possible password combos in an effort to gain access to my own work ! And for 471/2 of these the combos turned out to be quite futile .,., eh, wrong !
And I might add, I also have my written WILL protected in the same fashion ,, with the same password ! And IT was the actual reason for wanting in to these files at this time .,., my dear daughter having, since my First Will and Testament was writ, divorced & re-married ! So the ex needed to be changed to the current ! ( sorry Thomas, I'm sure you're the permenent not just the current !) and so it all started .,.,
However, all's well that ends .,., remembered !!