Sunday, February 27, 2005


No it is okay, I am not asking for Help, but it is the name of a new comedy on BBC2 with Paul Whitehouse and Chris Langham. I have just watched the first one, and it had me laughing really hard. Paul Whitehouse does a great job in morphing into different characters and making them work.

To give you more idea of it have a look here
HELP - Info about it

and just in case you can't get BBC2 where you are, here is a link to some clips of it, turn up your volume and listen, you will love it.
Video Clips

Please enjoy it, I am.

Thursday, February 24, 2005


32 it is just a number, yeah?

Well not today, today it represents another year older, another year wiser, well supposedly, let’s be honest here, lol.

As usual I went to the gym, when I swiped my card in as I always have to, the first bars of happy birthday came up instead of the usual beep, not what I was expecting, and for the staff to tell me happy birthday, was just a little unusual. I suppose it is good that they know their customers, etc, just wasn’t expecting that to happen, nice though

I feel better representing my birthday years in hexadecimal, at least in that it is 20, which makes me sound very young!!!

It is snowing in London, snowing on my birthday, I surely don’t ever recall it snowing on my birthday that is very different.

I haven’t got the birthday wish I was hoping for today, which is a shame, cause for the past few years especially I have always had lovely gifts and things that mean a lot to me, this year, not yet. I don’t see my birthday wish coming true this year, would have been a lovely wish to have come through.

Anyway, I intend to make the most of the day, drink it up, so I am off to make my birthday a plenty drink day, ciao

Update - I think today needs an Altered Images - Happy Birthday background noise for the day, seem appropriate, and yes that shows my age

Wednesday, February 23, 2005


I have an interest in mythology, the stories are always interesting, told to tell a point and they do seem to form the basis for a lot of what our society has today.

There is a series on the BBC at the moment with Michael Wood - In Search of Myths and Heroes

It covers four myths, looking at the basis for them and where they really are and what was involved. So far it has done The Search for Shangri-la, Jason and The Golden Fleece, The Queen of Sheba

The last one is going to be on King Arthur, that should be an interesting one to watch, because there are so many different variations of it.

cooker update

Well, I was lucky this time, my cooker arrived and now all I have to do is have it installed, but and this is the clincher, it is in perfect nick, nothing wrong with it, and instead of paying £370, I paid £256 through the comet clearance site, now that to me is a bargain. Though I do wonder why gas cookers are so expensive. Thankfully I will now be able to remove the death trap of my old one, and have a cooker that doesn't bang, when being used, doesn't have a strange coloured flame either, so finally, I have the cooker for my kitchen

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Free Mojtaba and Arash Day

Free Arash and Motjaba

Cyber-dissidents Arash Sigarchi and Mojtaba Saminejad are both in prison in Iran for blogging their thoughts.

Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is being breached. Iran is acting in defiance of this global standard.

Check out this links.

Reporters Without Borders

Committee to Protect Bloggers campaign


Today is the day I am supposed to get delivery of my cooker. I won this cooker through auction at Comet Clearance.

Now I say supposed to because barely a month ago, I also won a cooker through them, and when the delivery day came, they told me the cooker had gone missing. So you can understand my lack of belief it will actually turn up this time.
Personally I am not sure how you lose a cooker, it isn't exactly as if it is a small thing, it is a fair size, to my knowledge it isn't sentient, it doesn't have feelings and go "I don't want to be a cooker, I want to be a fridge" and it wasn't just mine they lost, they lost the whole batch of appliances, cookers and more. So unless they found them, it seems we have rogue appliances roaming the UK, on the hide out, probably growing beards to disguise themselves and escape capture.

I will be very glad to get mine when it comes, and then finally have it fitted, as the one that came with my house when I moved in, has become a death trap, it isn't a good thing to make food with and it sure makes too many noises for my liking and it is at the end of its life, so I will be glad to see the back of it.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Water on Mars

It looks like there is water on Mars at not just at the poles, they believe there is a huge frozen sea just beneath the surface, and where there is water, there is always the chance of life too.

How many people will be thinking of the war of the world now, okay we aren't going to be invaded by Martians, I really doubt it

So David Bowie lyrics life on mars, might well be sung by others

Yep, this entry is full of links to elsewhere, but I like to lead others to places of interest, so please read.


Yep, it has finally happened, we actually have some snow in London, not much mind, but enough so that the ground is white, it is still falling right now, they reckon it could be anywhere up to 3 inches. I am waiting to see how the Tube reacts, it will either be fine, or totally grind to a halt and no one can go to work tomorrow.

Yes, we in London don't see snow that often, unless we go away, I actually think this is the first snowfall of 2005, I can't recall any other time this year, usually it is such an event when it does happen, because it is so rare.

Snow falling always brings back memories of childhood and playing in the snow when young, even then it didn't snow often, and for me my school was only around the corner, so there was never an excuse not to be able to go. I can even remember a time where I had to go to school and my older brother didn't for some unknown reason and by the time I got home, he had managed to take most of the snow in our garden and make a snowman, good snowman, but that shows you how little snow we got....

It does bring a pristine look to the outside world when you look out, and see this sheet of white covering everything, everything looks so new, so beautiful, and that is the time you go outside and land flat on your butt cursing the ice under the snow....

Enjoy it while it lasts London

Friday, February 18, 2005

Movie Review - Creep

Well this is a very English movie, that there is no doubt.

It is for those that don't know set on the Tube (London Underground) and the labyrinth of tunnels, etc that exist down there, that people might not be aware of. It is not a bad thriller/horror movie, though I don't recall being jumpy at any point, or feeling caught off guard at any point. Now either I have seen too many thriller/horror movies, or it just takes more than the movie maker could throw at the screen.

It uses the old Jubliee line platforms and tunnels at Charing Cross, and yes if you check your tube map, you might think I am nuts, well before the Jubliee Line Extension, the Jubliee Line used to terminate at Charing Cross. Still a worthwhile movie and those interested in the happenings underground, you can see the work that another site did to show which parts of the underground were used for the movie -

You can also see more about the disused parts of the underground here -

Interesting reading for those who like to know what exists under our feet, and what those things are we pass on the tube, and all those bits you think, what is that platform doing there, when no one stops there ie Kings Cross.

Enjoy the movie if you like horror movies.


Nestle in their odd wisdom have decided to get rid of the Smarties tube.

They say it is a revamp and is to keep it fresh and interesting for youngsters. Maybe I am really out of touch with youngsters as Nestle call them, but I always thought that the tube allowed the youngsters to be creative, use their imagination, something which we accuse them of not doing enough these days.

I wonder if there will be a rush now to buy the last of the Smarties tubes before they are changed over. If I walk into a Woolworths or WHSmiths or Tesco, etc tomorrow will I find that all the Smarties tubes are gone, maybe I will do.

I don't see the logic, other than a bunch of marketing people were bored and thought, hey, how can we screw with a long tradition. I wonder if this will go the same way as Coke, when they introduced their new taste and then went, oops, we are going back to the old taste.....

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Missing plutonium and uranium

Today it was announced that British Nuclear Group (BNG) have realised that they have missing 29.6kg of plutonium and 16.4kg of naturally-depleted uranium. They are saying this is an audit/accounting issue. Well given that 29.6kg of pluntonium can make 7 nuclear bombs, that is a big audit issue. So in the interest of keeping the world safe, can everyone please look behind their sofas, down the back of chairs, in their garages, outhouses, etc and see if we can help BNG find this missing material, cause we certainly wouldn't want to have mislaid such an important material.

Find out more here -

Lets hope that it isn't in North Korea or Iran or anywhere else that wouldn't mind this material.........

Air passengers win new EU rights

For those who haven't heard about this, have a look at the link below.

This is long overdue, and should have happened a long time ago. From my own experience where I was stuck at JFK in the past for over three hours, due to the plane, having a heavy landing and when they wanted to check the black box to make sure all was okay, they didn't have a reader on the plane, and the airport didn't have one either. It took the airline to find another airline to borrow their black box reader, talk about a right confusion, and all through it we were told little or nothing of what the score was, other than we were waiting to hear from airbus in France, right, this was late night US time, so you can imagine the scene, all of us thinking great, we have to wait until they wake up, before we can go, thanks a bunch.

I think the sooner the airlines, don't overbook flights, bump people, take responsibility for making sure that flights go on time, the better. But in true airline style, we the poor passengers will be made to pay for their poor practices, what a surprise.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

London Underground/The Tube

For those who read the blog the other day, you will know that I missed out on the Chinese New Year in London due to 3 lines having engineering works all at the same time, and because of this it would have meant a 2 hour journey each way, which of course is totally unacceptable, when it usually takes 30 minutes, so you can imagine my frustration and anger. Well in the spirit that you might have seen on this blog already, I actually decided to complain, and I got a response. I have posted their response to my letter and my original email to them as well, so you can see just how dismissive they are and what as someone told me is a toilet grade response

This is what I wrote to them.

Hi there,

I am disgusted with the tube service for this coming weekend, I live in Harrow, and I wanted to go and see the Chinese New Year in Trafalgar Square, and all the events with it. Lo and behold on the Sunday, there is no decent and basically feasible way for me to get into London. There are engineering works on the Met line, yet again, and because they are coinciding with engineering works on the Chiltern line, I can't use that line to get into town. I can't even go from the Harrow and Wealdstone station, because of engineering works. I have to say who ever organised this, can't organise a piss up in a brewery, this is pathetic, seriously pathetic. I know the work has to be done, fine, but make it possible that those who want to get up town can, feasibly do so. Your own website says that it will make sure that tube runs for major events, I would have thought the Chinese New Year was a major event. Plus these works have been going on for a very long time, too long. Surely it would be possible to make it so that they were non-stop in shifts throughout the whole weekend. It is disgusting that those who aren't living centrally in London are penalised, and given that I am disabled too, this is a real slap in the face, for access to those who want it. I really really hope I receive a reply, though I very much doubt it, given you haven't been bothered in the past to reply to someone who actually voted for you.

Kind Regards

This is the wonderful response I got from them, see if you can actually find a real understanding in their to what I wrote, and if you can a heartfelt apology, if so, please point it out, I would love to know which bit I missed.

Thank you for your email, addressed to the Mayor. Your correspondence has been logged at the Mayor's Office and passed onto me at Customer Services to respond to.
I am sorry to learn that you experienced difficulties getting into London last weekend. We have planned engineering work ongoing, on various, lines for the next few years, which is due to the amount of necessary repairs and replacement to track, signals and upgrade of stations and platforms. It was a choice between closing the line, or section of, for a number of weeks continuously whilst the work is carried out, or to use off-peak periods where the least disruption is caused. Public preference led to the latter action being taken. Planning of the work is done many months in advance, sometimes up to a year, and whilst careful consideration is taken to avoid major events, this is not always possible. When there is planned engineering work we always provide Rail replacement Bus services so customers are not stranded. We also make agreements with other transportation modes to accept tickets on their services, which is usually very useful for those who can use Chiltern Line Rail service. It was very unfortunate that last weekend they were also doing planned engineering work too. Once again I am sorry for any inconvenience you experienced, and assure you that we always try to minimise disruption as much as possible. I hope this clarifies the situation. Please contact me again if you need any help in the future.

Yours sincerely

Customer Service Advisor
Customer Service Centre
London Underground Limited

So you can see there really wasn't an understanding of the situation at all, 2 hours instead of 30 minutes, replacement bus service, which didn't go all the way, which doesn't make sense at all, and for those who live where I do, know the Chiltern line has been doing engineering works on Sunday for quite some time, so evidently those who travel, know more than those in the glass house at London Underground Limited.

I do wonder if I should even respond to this, and point out the holes in their response, mmm. I wonder if it would do any good at all. So here it is in all its glory, our wonderful public service, paying lip service to someone with a valid compliant, ho hum, what happened to days when we were leaders in organizing, public service

Monday, February 14, 2005

Valentines Day

Happy Valentine’s Day to all.

Yep, today is Valentines for those who haven’t seen all the store signs and all the information being pushed on to us, to make sure we don’t forget. So I hope there isn’t anyone who forgot, because if so, you best run and hide now, cause there are no excuses.

This year I am not doing anything, because I have no one to celebrate Valentines with, a little more ahhh at the back please :o)).

I for one will be glad to see the back of it, whilst it is a nice idea that you should tell the one you love, that you love them and do something for them, it shouldn’t just be a single day a year, and you should be doing it all year round. Though I have to admit I have in the past been a little extravagant, and gone out of my way to the make the one I love, be sure that I love them.

For example last year, I sent a 3ft card parcelforce, cause the royal mail said it was too big to be normal mail, and this was sent airmail to the lady of my life at the time, that along with a lovely bunch of red roses and some lingerie which all went down a treat, as well as the shock of a 3ft card turning up.

Other times, it was a case of going to the Ritz, it was a surprise and it was for her, as well as doing other things associated with that. A beautiful memory that is, more happened, but I don’t need to explain it.

Last year, I was the recipient of a bunch of red roses myself, really dark red roses, I was stunned, and so touched, never been given flowers myself, so that will definitely stick in the memory as a really lovely touch.

I have had some wonderful Valentines, and I think you have to make a little effort to show the one you love, that they are special to you, if not, why are you with them. It doesn’t have to be expensive, it doesn’t have to be over the top, just something that is right for that special someone in your life, and will mean the world to them, and i.e. it shows you know them. Anyway, I enjoyed past Valentines, but this year is to pass by with nothing to show, so for those who have someone special on this day, show them you love them, show them they are the world to you.

For all you lovers out there, enjoy today

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Chinese New Year

Today is the day of the Chinese New Year celebrations in London, with a grand parade and events and so much more. I was going to go, and really wanted to visit, but thanks to engineering works on the tube, I had to cancel, I was going to go with a friend, but instead of a 30 minute journey, I would have spent nearly 2 hours each way travelling to do this. Where I live, I have the option of 3 separate lines to get into central London, and yes, all three have engineering works, a wonderful collaboration between the organisers to make it so that anyone who lives where I am, can basically sod off when wanting to get to central London. This is just not acceptable, and really shows London to have a third world transport system. I even complained directly to the mayor office, and days later, still awaiting a response, I guess the fact I was direct, honest, and to the point, made it that he can’t be bothered to reply, and why am I not surprised, he is happy to peddle rubbish to us Londoners about how he is fixing the tube, well no Mr. Mayor you aren’t.

Anyway, on to something better

I want to mention a blog that I know is a good read

KLite - described as "I am an Englishman living in Kuala Lumpur. I will write about my experience of life as a K-Lite(Term given to people who livehere). I have previously lived in Canada and UK where I am from.

The trials and tribulations of an Englishman living in Malaysia after the tourists have gone home. If you have ever been interested in what it is like to live abroad, and especially what it is like to live in Malaysia as an Englishman, well this blog will give you a low-down of how one such Englishman is finding it. Read what it is like for an Englishman to go over there, how he is adjusting to life, and the things that happen to him. And they say only Mad dogs and Englishman go out in the midday sun

So please go and enjoy

Friday, February 11, 2005


Today’s topic is quangos. Yes for those who haven’t been in the UK long enough or know enough about our politics, these are nasty little things.
The web definition of a quango is “QUAsi Non-Governmental Organization; an organization that is financed by the government yet acts independently of the government”

Some years ago, back in the dark days of the Thatcher era, she decided it would be a good idea to create these powerful, unelected bodies that would then preside over vast parts of the UK doing whatever they want, and us the people having no power to stop them. They spend vast sums of the taxpayer’s money and here is the good bit, we can’t get rid of them. They were initially created by the Tories, for their chums to have jobs, i.e. friends of high ranking ministers were given jobs for money, doing part time work, and for no real good either. When this current government came to power, they clearly stated they would get rid of them, well as this news item shows

Guess what, Tony and his friends have even more jobs now, seems old Tony wanted to reward the brown nosing friends he has, by giving them power over us, and as they aren’t elected we can’t get rid of them, unlike him.

To show just how stupid some of these quangos are, here are some mission statements from some of them

I give the link rather the reproduce, because I think the BBC might be a little upset if I just reproduced the material without explaining it was from them.

As those in the UK can explain, these quangos waste billions of pounds of the taxpayer’s money, they are unelected, and they are just another case of jobs for the boys, well thank you Mr.Blair for creating even more of these useless, wasteful bodies. One would think you must run out of friends eventually, but no, you are managing to create more of these quangos, wow, your day must be really empty if all you can do is dream up more quangos to cover areas which are already covered by those who are elected. Please tell me how much the members of quangos get paid, cause how much more money shall we waste.

It is amazing that the other main parties, the Tories and the Lib Dems say they will remove them, yet you are quiet, mmm, I wonder why that is. The sooner these useless bodies are gone, the better, we can either have tax cuts, or, which would be better, more money invested into the infrastructure of this country which is so so so needed, though you can’t see it can you Mr.Blair. Please put on a pair of glasses and not be blind to the problems around you, though sadly they start with you.

Thursday, February 10, 2005


IKEA opened a new store in Edmonton, in North London. Well they totally managed to stuff that up, there was such a rush of people and because so many people turned up they had to close the store. This is supposedly the biggest IKEA store in London and there to ease the amount of people visiting the one at Brent Park.

This will give you an idea of how bad things were, it seems we are so addicted to the likes of IKEA now, literally every home has something of IKEA and yes I do too


Chuggers, or charity workers asking for money in the high street, those hired by charities to get your money on a regular basis. I have no problem with them, as long as they accept a no where it is given. As someone who has the misfortune to be claiming JSA, one can’t exactly afford to be giving at the moment, so as one goes to sign on, I am dressed as I would if I was going to work, i.e. a suit and overcoat, helps when signing on, less aggro – wonderful tip if you ever have the misfortune to go to a jobcentre, they give respect 9 times out of 10. Anyway, in one little stretch of the street, as I go to sign on, I am stopped 3 times, yes, 3 times by these people in less than 5 minutes. They obviously saw me as a gold mine, dressed in a sharp suit and overcoat. The words, you colleague has already stopped me, goes on deaf ears, and I am the one with deaf ears!!!


Today I attempted to give blood, I have given blood before and have often wondered why it isn’t something that is forced on people, that they have to give blood unless there is a good reason, and I know many might say a fear of needles, well I understand that, I hate needles, have to turn away and hate having it put into me, even the little pin prick needles, this might be due to having a massive one put in my backside when having a tetanus shot when I was young due to having managed to get a tack in my hand, a story my family love recalling often enough. And I don’t have a flabby backside either to take it, so my god, I couldn’t walk properly for quite a few hours, but I still give blood.
Well not anymore, I am not allowed, it transpires that my having blackouts and dizzy spells excludes me from doing my fellow person a good turn and my A+ blood is now turned down, so until they know why I blackout and have the dizzy spells, not allowed to give anymore blood, and they actually think that it could have made things worse for me. Only now do I know about it, no-one ever said not to give blood, oh well a lesson learnt.
Giving blood is a good thing and until we can find an alternative, those who can, should, it might be one day us on the other side needing it. I did in the past with a former partner have the same blood type, so I guess if there had been an accident, it would have been a case of her saying, you can tap his arm, now!!!, take his blood. Kind of a really lovely gift in one sense, you have a part of me in you now, other than the usual way that might mean!!!

Wednesday, February 09, 2005


Today’s post is about the NHS, for those of us, who are of the left leaning persuasion, it is an institution that we care dearly about, and believe that it can be a good thing, and should be around, even if it is in a slightly different guise.

I for one, am against this idea that the two main parties are peddling at the moment, about offering choice on the NHS, whilst it sounds a wonderful idea, it is a diversion from the real task of actually fixing the NHS. Choice won’t do it, most and I mean most people just want a health system that does the job, and would prefer to have it close to hand, instead of having to drive miles and miles away. At the moment the NHS is a postcode lottery, I know this through first hand experience. If you want a decent audiology department, you will be hard pressed to find one. I live where I do in London, because they have a good one, and that isn’t open that often and getting to see them is still hard to do, but compare that to other places, where their audiology department is only open 2 half days a week, and so if like me you need a hearing aid to hear anything, and thus live, if you need a replacement, what are you going to do, wait a week to get a new hearing aid, laughable, let alone all the other daft ideas that come out of a lot of audiology departments, like giving you no spare aid, in case the one you have breaks down, mmm. I think most employers like their employees to hear them when they are talking to them. That is another thread for another day, I could give scripture on it very easily with over 30 years experience of dealing with them, and yes I am that age, not a pup. Just so you know, if you ever need a hearing aid and wondering about the length of a waiting list to get your first one, it is 2 years in a lot of places, yep, that means the poor old pensioners, who might need one, might actually be dead, by the time their name comes up, that is how much of an importance it is.

The NHS has a problem dealing with those who have what is termed as long term illnesses or disabilities. For example, it has been reported in the last day or two, that the large chunk of money that was meant to help with dealing with treatment for cancer has gone on pen pushers, see this

It clearly states the problems of post-coding, something that was meant to be abolished back in 1997, when these current bunch of useless idiots in charge, were given the keys to the country.

If the NHS was aimed at trying to prevent rather than just cure illnesses it would be cheaper and better for those living in the UK. To give a rather graphic example, I personally have suffered from blackouts in the last few years and in every case, have had the misfortune of the blackout causing injury, sometimes to the point of a broken wrist, which is still awaiting surgery, 2 years on, but in every case, I have the misfortune to suffer concussions, caused by a blow to the head, either the front or front, sides, and back, depending on where I fall. Well unlucky me suffered a blackout on Monday morning at about 6am, no idea how long I was out, but any time is long enough, well when I came to, I just tried to carry on as normal, as I have always been told to do, I have a few scratches and bruises and my forehead was a little worse for wear, but nothing new. I had always been told to go if I still felt the effects 24 hours later, and lo and behold I did, so off to A+E (Accident and Emergency) to see what can be done, nada it seems because I wasn’t vomiting, incoherent, yet I was in a daze like a boxer can be after a bout, pressure on the head, and so on and so on. Instead of thinking, mmm, this is the nth time this has happened let’s make sure there isn’t any residual damage, or any residual effects, no, just packed off with a rather stern attitude of you are wasting our time, well thanks a bunch.
This same attitude in the past led to me having a tumour in my ears when I had infections repeatedly because no one bothered to check that mmm, maybe there is more to this. And against my left leaning ideology, I had surgery privately, and I am so glad because if the NHS had been allowed to do it, this blog wouldn’t be written right now, because the tumour was so expansive, I was at death’s door. On that slightly dour note, I want to put out a public thanks to all those who helped me through that very difficult period, whilst it was over 5 years ago, and other things happened afterwards, family and very close friends, who would know who they are, were there for me, they were all instrumental in my still being here, and making through what was a very trying time, and a realisation I wasn’t immortal, as most young people tend to think, and I know I did. It changed my outlook on life, and has made me appreciate those who were there through my difficult times, even more than I guess I have ever been able to show, so here to the whole world is my thanks.

On to today, I am lucky enough through enough pushing and shoving and cajoling to have the attention of a reasonably good audiologist, who I saw today and he has made it his intention to make sure I get the hearing aids I need to hear properly and thus make sure I miss out on nothing, he can be a pain at times, but he fights my corner, so I live with it. Well I swear he is yanking my chain, but today he told me I am going to have gold plated ear moulds, I swear this is the biggest joke going, apparently £100 a pop, yep. I am sure he is having me on, I guess I will find out in 7/8 weeks when I go back to have them fitted, but all of this made me think either it will be like bling, bling, or I am going to be one step closer to looking like a Borg, I mean I already have metal implants in my right ear after the tumour, so I guess piece by piece I am going down that road, though I will say now I have no intention of assimilating anyone, too kind a person to do that, and secondly I really don’t want that grey look, John Major wore it well in Spitting Image in the 90s, but it doesn’t suit me, pale is my look and I will stick with it.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

London Underground song

Well the super bowl is over, and I predicted it right…. What a shock, though I do believe the Patriots were so damn lucky, how the Eagles were so inept, I have no idea, but there we go. Three out of four Super Bowls for the Patriots, and they are called a dynasty, fair dues to them. Fingers crossed they don’t do it again next year, lol.

Well my ears are back, I can hear again, wow, some say silence is golden, not for me it wasn’t. But fingers crossed I have beaten the ear infection and I guess I will find out tomorrow for sure, though I am not optimistic at the moment.

On to other matters, there is a song doing the rounds at the moment, called London Underground, a little number written by a couple of people called "Adam Kay and Suman Biswas”

Even lyrics if you so wish

For those who have travelled, well travelled is maybe the wrong word, but suffered the London Underground, this will hit the spot just so. I think they pretty much sum up the problems of the Tube as we call it, and what could be better, still you have to listen to it, and when you do, figure out which song it was based on, happy to hear how many of you get it, should be fairly easy for those from the UK especially.

I have had my bathroom redone due to a leaking roof, thankfully the insurance covered the decorating, but not the roof, for a while I had a ceiling that was like a barn roof, open rafters, as the joists were falling to pieces. So happy to have it done, but those who have done DIY will know this smell, the paint, oh my god, I feel like I am on a high, but not a nice one, the smell is awful, it feels like it stripping the front of my eyes off, it is that nasty, the fumes are awful. I was also told not to go in there for 4/5 hours to let it dry, that is fine, I go in there 8 hours later, bursting to go, and it is still tacky and get some paint on my foot, not what I expected, a pristine white floor now has a slight foot mark, me and my size 9s leaving a little imprint, bummer. I will say the decorator has done a bang up job, so fantastic. I will be using him again when I have my dining room decorated, which I need to do, cause it looks like a building site, after having the damp course done last year. Just got to pick a colour and then it will be done, one more room on the way to a proper looking house…

Looking forward to answers to the question who the London Underground song was a cover of.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Super Sunday, at last

Today is what the Americans apparently called Super Sunday. It is the day of the Super Bowl and for those who don’t know about it, it is American Football’s final game of the season, thus the Super Bowl. Yes, it might seem odd having a Londoner talk about a game which he has never seen in person, though he would love to. I have only ever watched it on TV, never been to a game, a little difficult when your favourite team is the Dallas Cowboys and you live in London, lol. I have been watching the game for about 23 years roughly, ever since Channel 4 first came on the air in the early 80s and screened this game called American Football, since then I have been hooked and watch it as often as I can, usually 2 games a week every Sunday on SkySports, thanks for that Sky, so appreciate it, giving me, my weekly fix of football. I know a lot of people don’t like the game, find it boring, etc, etc. Me, prefer it to our football, not a fan of watching the likes of Man Utd, Chelsea, etc, never am, doubt I will be either. Anyway on to the game, it is going to be a real late nighter for me, given the game doesn’t start until about 11.20pm UK time, so plenty of food at the ready, plenty of alcohol at the ready too. Prediction for the game, well the favourites are the Patriots and as much as I would prefer them not to match what my beloved Cowboys did in the 90s by winning 3 times in 4 years, I really don’t see the Eagles being good enough to stop the juggernaut that is the Patriots. So there you have it, neck on the line, Patriots to win.

Enjoy your Super Sunday, wherever you are.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Mark of respect

Today is literally a no news day, other than the following short bit.

This morning a friend of mine 'W', her father passed away, he hadn't been well for a little while, even so, I know that 'W' is going through a lot right now, and for you 'W' my thoughts are with you and your family in this very difficult time. I know how much your father meant to you and how much respect and love you gave him. So you are in my thoughts and in my heart today, and I will be thinking of you through this hard time.

That is folks, nothing else today

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Follow up to yesterday

This starts with a follow up to yesterday’s post. Today is has been made clear that those on Incapacity Benefit (IB) will have their benefit cut, so they will be expected to survive on even less than they already do. Oh joy, my, this government really is going after the soft targets, those who are unable to fight back with any gusto, because they are under represented, and too poor to be able to fight back. This I thought by the name was a Labour government which should be the word Labour mean that the working person and the poor is put first, well thanks Mr.Blair another stitch up job you are doing on those who have no voice, no protection. Can I make something clear to the twat who we sadly have in charge of the government, have you ever tried to live life as a disabled person in this country. Shall I inform you of just how hard it is, firstly your pathetic rules on the NHS mean that those with disabilities, especially those with lifelong ones, are treated poorly, and not looked after, so for example myself, do you know how hard it is to get a hearing aid, in some places it is a 2 year wait, well by then I could be killed cause I didn’t hear the thing that attacked me, on top of that, how can someone work when they can’t hear, mmm, explain that one, idiot. And because you won’t help those with disabilities, it means we are out of the loop, do you know how hard it is to get insurance on many things without being charged an excessive premium for being disabled despite the fact I take better care of myself than a lot of able bodied people.
If I have the misfortune to suffer one of your grunts in the upcoming election, I will happily tell them where to shove their vote, because years ago when you asked for my opinion, you told me to sling my hook, why, because you couldn’t face the reality you were shown by a disabled person living in your so called paradise.

On to other matters, somewhat nicer matters. I have been out and about today doing bits and pieces and at the moment I have an ear infection which means I am not able to hear anything, so shopping isn’t the easiest task when you have to explain you want something and know that you can’t hear them back, lip-reading is so difficult, even though I learnt it as a child, still can’t get it right. If you don’t believe me, say to a friend who isn’t in hearing distance Van Gogh and see what they think you are saying, trust me, it will surprise you. Anyway, I was out and I had to hit the post office, and the person serving was very understanding, and there I was thinking yesterday, hell where is compassion, and I got some today. What did surprise me was to be given a cross and beads, and I was thinking why. How is God going to help me on this, if you take some people’s ideal of God, he is to blame for me having literally no hearing. The idea that asking God to help is a moot point, seeing he supposedly made me this way, mmmm… I have actually in the past been told, ask God to take away your deafness, how, and surely he gave me it in the first place. I really hate those who say that I did something in a previous life and this is my punishment, right, how about I dish out some punishment on your ass right now, for even suggesting such a thing. I am an open minded person, but that is offensive, you know what is trying, is being told that I am to blame for something that happened when I being formed, oh well thank you so much. I don’t believe in God, and never will, and if he exists and I get up there and told that I should have believed well then, if I live in the world with people like Tony Blair and George Bush, how come evil people like them can have a good life and the likes of me, get trampled by idiots like that, no, there is no God, but if you believe it then do. Just so glad we don’t have fundamentalist Christians in this country, and why, because we kicked them out 400 years ago, and they went to America, and that is what happens when you have fundamentalist Christians.
But going back to the point, a person at the bank when I went in, was very helpful, writing things down for me, and even wished me good health and a speedy recovery. Now that is how it should be, niceness, people being kind to each other, not this selfishness, it takes two seconds to be nice, please and thank you and a smile isn’t hard is it?

My second last point for the day, how is it that the London Underground can stuff up, that wasn’t a question, just a floating thought. But I want to go to the Chinese New Year parade on the 13th Feb, but thanks to engineering works on the line I use, the Metropolitan line, getting up town is going to be by bus if I am lucky, oh whoopee, where is the service we are paying for. Why Mr.Mayor aren’t you kicking the companies to get the repairs and replacement work done yesterday, how about this for an idea, have them work 48 hours solid, from the close on Friday until the Monday morning, easy to do. You have three teams, working an 8 hour shift, and thus the work is continuous, surely that makes sense and then it is done, but that means using a brain, and not squeezing the customer, and making their life a pain in the ass. Something tells me it is possible and feasible, cause otherwise this is going to go on for years, and London should have a decent underground yesterday, so wake up please.

The last point of the day is this. Today I have been shown compassion, understanding and thoughtfulness, why is that so difficult for the idiots who run this country that the vast majority of people in this country want to get along, not create divisions and you making evils out of people who can’t defend themselves, when maybe you should tackle you bosom buddies who you hand vast amount of our money to, for nothing i.e. PFI anyone. Get your priorities right, we elected you, not them, so listen to the people who elected you and stop your pathetic crass attacks on those who are in no position to be able to defend themselves and done nothing wrong other than be born with a disability, or had the misfortune to have a disability later in life, and yes depression is a disability, something you never wish on anyone.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

First Entry

This blog is about the life of a single man living in the fast paced city of London.

This will chart many things that are going on in London, in my life, in the UK, and what is happening in the government and others lives that I know. I guess a mix of many things, really.

I started this blog with the intention that there are things I want to share with the world, and some will be good, others will not be so. And today's entry focuses on the bad.

For those of you who don't know much about the UK, I would recommend the BBC website, it gives you an idea of what life is like, and just how insane of a government we have as well, always looking for the next sound bite.I know I am probably not allowed to do it, but I am going to include links to other sites for your reading if you want to

This is about the supposedly high level of Incapacity Benefit (IB) being claimed, and the so called new idea to deal with it. I for one, as a disabled am dismayed by these ideas, and lets be honest, they are just ideas, which if implemented will cause the hell for all those who are disabled and struggle to work, despite our best efforts, which the government doesn't help with a toothless DRC.
To get on incapacity benefit, isn't exactly a piece of piss, it is damn difficult to do, your doctor has to say you are incapable of working, and they are forced to be very harsh in their judgement. Just like with DLA (Disability Living Allowance) they are able to turn around and say you aren't disabled, even though you have been since birth, and being deaf is a disability and impacts on what you can do. I know of many who have been denied DLA, who should have it, and it isn't even a lot of money, there has been numerous reports saying it is far from enough. Those who are disabled have higher living costs, obviously, just to function in the world. This idea with IB, is another one of these cooked up by those who are in perfect health, but god forbid they ever suffer a problem, they will have no worries, MPs wages aren't exactly low, and they aren't exempt for insurance or charged very high premiums for being disabled, no, they have it easy. The comments made by some on the BBC site, on have your say, suggests that people are work-shy, maybe there is a minor, and I mean a minor amount that are, but to get IB isn't an easy task, no matter what people think. The comments I have seen, suggest that we go back to the idea of poorhouses, and throw people out on the street if they are unfortunate enough to be born disabled or suffer a disability later in life, even worse advocating that people are thrown out on to the streets, what next, going to the idea of the Nazis, where we gas people because they are disabled, or unable to work.
And these proposals are just as bad, they are a way to try and reduce the amount of money spent. If they want to reduce the money spent, help those on IB, by making sure operations are done on time, don't have to wait 2+ years for an operation like I have, and then people would get back to work faster, and for those who operations can't help, give them sufficient training, the disabled are the most poorly educated generally, and thus they can't even get good jobs, because the employers don't want to know. To give an example of government thinking, I am degree educated, once worked in IT, until I was made redundant by a company that outsourced my work to India, and since then, nothing, getting back in, is impossible. So when you go to the Job Centre and as a disabled person ask for help, response is, we can't help you, you are too educated for us to help you, oh wonderful, this is what Mr.Blair wants, someone who is educated, who needs help, but they aren't prepared to help, talk about talk being cheap, and whilst on it Mr.Blair, cutting funding for those who are trying to make a new career through part time study because they already have a degree, but are unemployed, and disabled, is a cheap shot. When you grow balls, how about you come and take it up then, you are okay in your glasshouse.

On another issue, this idea of sham marriages, I know of people who fell in love with someone from abroad and was lucky enough to get married before these stupid proposals are coming in. I myself was in a position where I was considering and looking to marry someone from abroad, someone from the US, and these new rules would make it impossible, because the default thinking would be they were marrying me for residency, how stupid can you be. There are sham marriages, just like there are all over the world, but to suggest by default, anyone marrying someone from abroad, not in the EU is a sham marriage is extremely offensive and down pathetic.

This country is supposedly going down the pan, well newsflash it is already there, and I am a born and raised Londoner, who can't believe the place is disappearing like it is. Where has compassion for our fellow people gone?Mr.Blair when you learn to live in reality like the rest of us, and actually realise that you are just going to make those who are already suffering pain through disability even worse, then maybe, just maybe, I won't consider you more evil than Mrs.Thatcher