Thursday, November 30, 2006

It isn't paranoia if they really are after you

I've a day off and I've made the mistake of subjecting myself to public transport. I thought I'd best get a bit of Xmas shopping done, so I went into Manchester and did a shop, which went OK. Getting home wasn't OK: I gave up on the bus towards home after waiting half an hour for our ten-minute service (by that time it was ten-past five and the crowd was pretty big) so I decided to get the tram to get the quarter-to train. What the trams didn't tell us was that there were signalling problems at GMex. Or at least they didn't tell us until we'd been sat between stops at Bridgewater Hall for ten minutes. We then had to wait another quarter of an hour to wait for our turn to go up the slope in emergency stop mode (this involved two emergency stops, not fun in a packed tram with no proper handholds!) All the larks. Let's hope I've had my quota for the week now.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006


Whatever you do, don't let relatives read your blog. I've been given a "George Formby grill" for my birthday!

Friday, November 10, 2006

Twopenny blues

You've got to hand it to the New Model Royal Mail with their new e-stamps. Instead of going to the inconvience and expense of going out to the post office and buying a stamp and then sticking it on an envelope you can now go through the palaver of buying a stamp online with your credit card, print it out and then take the letter to the post office for posting because it's a non-standard size, only to find it's been closed and turned into a discount sock warehouse.

Of course, this is all part of the nonsense of pretending that public services are business units, a model that works so well on the railways. The government has its share of the blame. Nowadays, instead of being able to nip down to the post office to buy a new TV licence you've got to either log on online and pay by card or else send a cheque in the mail. In either case instead of having a done deal pdq you've got to wait for the new licence to arrive in the mail. Whenever that gets delivered these days.

In the Sherlock Holmes stories cries for help often came by post and he rushed to the rescue after consulting his Bradshaw's for the train times. Whiz for progress. The poor buggers would be dead, buried and subject to a Time Team dig by the time he got the note these days.

Saturday, November 04, 2006


We're often told that the male sex drive is at its peak at 18. We're not told that till our 19th birthday, mind. Usually by older relatives who sit back in their chairs, tap their pipes out on the cat and say: "it's all downhill from here on in tha knows."


Having reviewed my relict powers I reckon I'm just as capable of thirty seconds' worth of ineffectually emabarassing fumbling about as I was quarter of a century ago.