Monday, April 26, 2010

Going home

It's the little things that affect me. On the bus on the way home there was one of those upsetting little vignettes. The bus stopped outside a MacDonalds and passengers trooped on including a small girl, perhaps eight or nine, with the obligatory MacMeal and drink.

"Sorry love," said the driver, "you can't come on here with that."
She put the goodies into the carrier bag she was holding.

"Not even in that, love. Too many people leave it all behind on the bus so we're not letting anyone come on with them."

One of the other passengers had a go at him - "Aw, come on, man, she's only little" - but he was adamant. The girl turned and walked away. As we passed her she gave the bus a glance I know too well.

I can understand the driver's position. More often than not the buses on this route are middens. I'm not talking about the occasional crisp packet or pop bottle, I'm talking serious past-your-ankles litter. And yet... and yet...

There must be a better way of doing it. She was young enough to be told that the driver wanted to see what she was bringing on and that he'd want to see that she was taking it all away with her. Or something.

I'd like to imagine that when she got home that girl had somebody to tell the story to who'd then give her a hug, tell her it didn't matter and then give her a jam butty and a cup of tea. I'd like to imagine that.

Sunday, April 25, 2010


The new houses that are being built near my parental home are nearly finished now. There's a show home, of course, with all conned mods including, bizarrely, a fountain in the front garden. The fountain is three feet in diameter and four and a half foot tall. The front garden is four by six feet square. The board outside says: "24 luxury spacious 2, 3 and 4 bedroom houses."

The footprint of the footings for each house is about the size of my living room.

They're miniaturising everything now, even luxury.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Saturday Singalong

And just for Scarlet Blue...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Paradise Lost


The flight ban is lifted.

I know, I know... A lot of people I know have been massively incommoded by the fallout from the Iceland volcano, stranded at one or other end of journeys with expensive and stressful consequences. I know this and I am appalled at their plight.

Oh, but it has been so peaceful.

Bon voyage, those of you who are hoping to travel hopefully.

Friday, April 16, 2010

By their junk mail we shall know them

I'm sorry to harp on, but...

Here I am at the peak of manliness, able to leap tall buildings with a single bound and sometimes able to heave myself up off the sofa unattended. I expect I match up to no end of testosterone-rich demographics and I even take the rubbish out to my own dustbin. All this is of no avail when it comes to impressing the young postlady. Does my morning mail include invitations to goat-tethering parties in the realms of the man-eating tiger? Glossy brochures advertising world-saving adventure with chaps in brogues? Moustache wax catalogues?

No, no and no again.

This morning we have:

  • Invitations to subscribe to:
    • The Oldie
    • Women's Realm
    • Buchan's Football Monthly
  • A catalogue telling me that "It's never too warm to wear Damart!"
  • Fliers for:
    • Tonic Wine
    • The Whitley Bay Tourist Board
    • The Help the Aged Rent-a-Commode Service
    • Remedial assitance for erectile disfunction (this last in green ink in trembly handwriting)

A lad can have no illusions these days.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


I've been having a lot of dreams about masturbation lately. Which just goes to show how ambition is curtailed by age: back in what little I had of my prime I used to dream about sex.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Waking the dead

I seem to have spent the past couple of months cutting back the overgrown bits of the garden and it still looks like the Matey Grocer. Last month's wet frosts have devastated the tree heather and a couple of lavenders but they look like they may pull through. Ditto the penstemons and Phygelius. Sadly, we've seen the last of the rather pretty "little" Phormium that was in a container by the patio. A great shame: the pink, red and dark green striped leaves were a nice touch on a bright summer's day.

The streets round our way are littered with Cordyline leaves. Every third house had a Cordyline in the front garden and every three out of four have bit the dust with the winter.

Once every so often Mother Nature insists on reminding us that we're only two degrees south of Moscow.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

It's all a matter of timing

It struck me the other day that of my contemporaries the three longest-lasting relationships are all outside marriage. It came as a shock to all of us when a couple I know realised they'd been together for thirty years.

That's when the problem arose.

It's easy enough to decide on the anniversary date of a marriage: there's bits of paper and stuff to provide a mark on the calendar. But if you don't get married...?

"I reckon that the third date's the one we should count. That's the one where we decided we wanted to go out together," he suggested.

"Hmm... You're probably right," she agreed. "Anyhoo, we can't count the first date."

"Why can't you count the first date?" I asked.

It had been a long night and I was tired, otherwise I'd have had more sense.

"Och, no, that one doesn't count," she explained. "I thought he was a right idiot."

"What did you think of her?" I asked.

"I'm saying nothing. I'm still in trouble for not eating all my lunch in May 2001."

Friday, April 02, 2010

Now where was I?

I was going to parade my excuses for neglecting the blogosphere but bollocks to it. I can't be arsed writing excuses and you can't be arsed reading excuses.

Thank you for all those cards and letters, you folks in Television Landt...