19 September 2009

Good Afternoon

My apologies for the lack of a daily thread for today.  I was a bit too upset last night when I got home from work and saw the discussion that had unfolded.  It is never pleasant to see yourself being described in the terms that have been thrown around here.

I'm utterly confused by how one comment asking long-time regulars to be a bit less hostile to newbies and Graun staffers has kicked off such a shitstorm.  It was a gentle suggestion, not a fiat from the Supreme Overlord.  What really puzzles me is that the people who are upset/offended are newbies and lurkers -- the very people I was hoping to make feel more welcome.  Ah well, the road to hell and all that...

Just to clarify a couple of points:

This site isn't connected with the Guardian beyond the fact that the posters here became familiar with each other through Cif.  I've never been to Matt's house for a dinner party, never invited to Polly's villa, never even met a Graun file clerk.  I asked for a bit of politeness towards Graun staffers when they come here because my perception is, much as Thaumaturge said the other day, that people like Bella and Jessica probably not in positions that are responsible for the decisions that have made most of us angry.  Look, I worked in Starbucks' corporate headquarters as a temp for awhile when I lived in Seattle.  I think Howard Schultz is pond scum, but Starbucks was one of the most pleasant work environments I've ever been in.  Even as a temp, I was made to feel like part of a team and even as a temp, there were some lovely little perks.  I'm sure that, had I worked there longer as an actual employee, I'd have developped quite an affection for the place.  I'm guessing that it's the same with Bella and Jessica.  They like where they work.  They see it in a different light than we do.  Doesn't make them evil and it doesn't make them responsible for some of the more byzantine or hypocritical decisions that get made in Graun Towers.

As for the Phone Booth, yes it is a private blog.  As I have said here before, it was originally set up to be a place where banned Ciffers could keep each other informed of their latest Cif IDs.  Originally, I was granting readership to anyone who e-mailed me with a request to be allowed access.  That became untenable for reasons that I don't feel obligated to explain to anyone.  It has morphed into something a bit different, but I am not going to apologise to anyone for its existence.  This current bit of unpleasantness here is precisely why I have no qualms about the private nature of the Phone Booth.  For what it's worth, no one has been added to it for quite some time, precisely because I'm uncomfortable with the awkwardness of the logistics of adding people.  In order to add someone, I have to have an e-mail address.  I can't get an e-mail address for someone without asking here for the person I'd like to add to e-mail me.  That adds to the sense of exclusion for some people here, I'm sure.  But I hardly think that the fact that there is a group of people who enjoy being able to "chat" with each other without the type of unpleasantness that we're currently going through here constitutes an online Illuminati.

Last, as some of our anonymous posters may already have discovered (I've had multiple interruptions as I've been composing this and it has taken me far longer than I thought it would), I have changed the settings so that anonymous posting is no longer possible.  Comments will continue to be unmoderated, but if you can't at least be bothered to get a pseudonymous identity and have the balls to put even a pseudonym to your comments here, I'm not sure why any of the rest of us should give a flying fuck what you think.  My one regret in this decision is that I know that this will occasionally make it difficult for Deano to comment.  I'm sorry for that, Deano, but I trust that you will understand my reasons.

Normal service will be returned tomorrow.


  1. Worry not young miss.

    I am glad that you are well and sad that you have been disturbed by tossers.

    My very best wishes.


  2. Just got back in from a rather long day. I always seem to miss the bust-ups but what I really, really want to know is:

    How is Thauma's dog?

    You know in Brussels near the Sablon there is a restaurant called "Qui va promener le chien?" which translated means "Who's going to walk the dog?" Sweet. The restaurant owner must love his mutt.

    Montana - take a rest today....

    Merlin is about to start folks. I've missed that Dragon.

  3. I'm away of the weekend and will catch up on the aforementioned shitstorm later.

    Illegitimi Non Carborundum, Montana ... don't let 'em grind you down.

  4. Merlin Bru? they've got Carry on Matron on Beeb 2 - can't miss our Hattie, Sid & Kenneth.

    I think Thauma's pooch is on the mend.

    Montana - My sympathies - you must be totally fed up with all the shit. Lets hope the trolls have sloped off.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Jeez, Bru, what an outstandingly crass comment. Your concern for thauma's dog may be admirable, but do you really think that after all the shit that has gone down here in the last few days, and how montana must feel about it, that anyone is terribly interested in restaurants in Brussels or what you're going to watch on TV tonight? Do you ever give a flying fuck about anyone else apart from yourself?

  7. Montana

    Serious post here.

    As one of those whose comments regarding BTH on this blog lead to the attempt to get you dragged before a Cif inquisition, I'd like to appologise for, in no small way, contributing to the upset that has resulted.

    Although I stand by my opinion of that individual, I believe that if he had issues with my remarks he should have taken the issue up with me & not attempted to make others answerable for them.

    I am aware that it is against your personal beliefs, please feel free to delete the posts &, if you feel it to be necessary, take any measures required to stop my access to posting in future.


  8. GP01 - it wasnt your fault at all, the comment was wholly justified.

  9. I was wondering if this was the explanation for there being no new thread, and I'm sorry to see it is. You have been right at every stage of this, so don't let these tossbags make you sad (which I know is easier said than done, because I've had shit days as a result on online schlacts every now and then).
    Just remember how grateful the rest of us our that you took and continue to take the time out to make this place exist. The fact that they can complain because you've asked people just to be reasonably pleasant to each other says everything about them that you need to know.

  10. It does gall a little when staffers show up here, it feels like they're taking the piss, and it feels a bit prep-schoolish of them, a bit fucking cheeky and juvenile. I choose not to be rude or pick a fight because I just want them to fuck off as soon as possible.

    The one time I did take the effort to make a long and considered post regarding the poor quality of journalism and the resulting oversensitve moderation to one of them he completely ignored it, even though it set out quite clearly what the problems with one article and writer were, and was very moderate in tone (fro me anywa). So if they're around I'll just normally piss off and/or ignore them til they go.

    Absolutely anyone can do what ever they want. It will get managed. That said, being reasonable is never a bad starting point if you're bothering to engage at all.

    The alternative is relentless piss taking, as Kiz quite justifiably accuses me of - I keep all that for CiF because it's all they warrant. Like little Rusbridger borgs with no libido or class they are.

    Apart from that I'm having a great weekend!

    Montana, best wishes, you are doing an amazing job. Chin up girl.


  11. GP01 - I certainly don't distance myself from your comment, although I wouldn't have put my disgust for BTH in quite those terms :O), but perhaps you were unaware that BTH obsessively scours this blog for 'ammunition'. He mentioned on the WDYWTTA thread that he had read the imogenblack thing (which was no more than 4 or 5 'humourous' comments on one day) some time ago, and was 'appalled'. Although apparently not appalled enough to actually do anything about it until several months later when he could use it for his own whinging agenda. This suggests to me that he obsessively reads this blog every day. I'm not suggesting that anyone pull any punches, but it's worth remembering that this is an open forum, and unfortunately, it now seems that montana is getting the blow-back from actually allowing freedom of speech.
    That said, I'm happy to go on record as saying that I think that BTH is an anal-retentive wanker. Cut'n'paste that, you cunt!

  12. Montana:

    Just wanted to add my voice to those who have already given you their thanks, their sympathies and their best wishes.

    Please don’t take the actions of a few anonymous wreckers to heart.

    And welcome mandrillpb, who I don’t believe I’ve seen before.

  13. Scherfig

    Don't take that tone with me - I have supported Montana consisently when no one else did and I have not had a chance to read the comments of last night.

    I'm trying to get a bit of lightheartedness into what is becoming an increasingly boorish tone over here and frankly if you dare start those comments with me you can rest assured I won't be here again.

  14. Jay, Schefers

    Thanks. I've only just been able to access Cif again, for the first time since early July, over the last week or so (Vista sompiant browsers seem to have even more trrouble with it than the old XP ones) &, whilst I was aware of his habit of saving posts & then quoting them out of context, or selectively, I was unaware that he used the same tactics here.

    Unfortunately, by the time I'd slept on the response to his WDYWTTA post, it had been deleted &, as it would only have stoked the fires, had nothing to reference & would have been immediately modded.

    That being said, if he has a problem with me, or my opinion of him, then that's between him & me & nobody else should be used as a football.

  15. BTH actually counts the times he's mentioned here, he brought it up on the WDYWTTA thread.

    What is unforgivable are his direct assaults on Montana and his obvious liking for kangaroo courts. Am happy to concur with Sherfigs opinion of him.

  16. Just got back from Manchester and caught up on all this.

    Montana, I too need to apologise that you got targetted as a result of things that I was involved in. One would think that anyone with an IQ over 80 would realise that you can't hold the "originator" of an open, unmoderated blog responsible for the comments of regulars - especially when that blog does not "belong" to one person but is more like a blogger's collective.

    Still, I am sorry, and I will modify my language in future for your sake alone, because you do a great job of keeping this blog rolling.

    I read the anon drivel last night and I support 100% your decision to disable anon posting on here. If someone has something to say, by all means say it, but at least have the cojones to create a nick to do it.

    I need beer. And I will check out CiF while I'm at it :o)

  17. BB,

    Hope you didn't get caught up in any of the traffic jams on the M60 today; always the same when United are at home.

    Personally, I'm sticking with the Chileam shiraz.

  18. I'm sure your lecturing of Bru will make Montana feel much better, Scherfig. Chill, eh?

    Don't go, Brusselsexpats.

    Welcome, mandrillpb. Are you a merengue?

  19. Montana - you need a hug!

    Absolutely agree about the anonymous thing those (that?) posters were no better than muggers imho they just crash in and destroy everything.

    I think we need to learn to 'scroll on by', I include myself in this.

  20. Hey Montana,

    Try not to worry too much or to let all this get you down. It must be galling when you have spent a lot of time and effort doing something and then you get a load of shit for it.

    For the record I think BTH was totally out of order to bring it up on Cif which is what seemed to kick all this off. I was disappointed in him because I actually have sometimes enjoyed his posts (he said something really funny the other day actually) but I know he can really dog some posters and then yesterday bringing this up - that was just mean spirited. I did not get into a big discussion re it over on Cif because I did not want to add fuel to the fire as it were - but basically it is no ones business on Cif if you want to set up twenty bloody forums - and that i did say.

    I did not even know this place existed until your email - although I had heard references to Cif refugees etc. And I was a bit nervous about 'coming along' as I had one or two run ins on Cif with people (I can get a bit angry - especially at certain 'times of the month' I am considering banning myself from posting then!) but everyone was great and I think there is some really intersting stuff on here.

    I dont always post - but lurk a lot and I have actually learnt stuff from people on here - especially re music and books when they are being discussed.

    Anyway just wanted to say that you are doing a great job and don't let the bastards get you down.

  21. GP)!

    I let the train take the strain. And after a hellish journey on the way up, with a guy from cameroon arguing with his wife on the phone for the entire bloody journey (I now know every intimate detail of their married lives, including the number of times she's cheated on him and what her brother has to say about it), I did the latte-drinking liberal thing and paid an extra £15 on the way back to upgrade to first class, with free tea, crisps and biccies, a comfy seat and no bloody noise at all.

    I'd bought my tickets ages ago so the total journey Gatwick to Manc return cost me £41 return including the upgrade. Not bad. :o)

  22. Took your advice, martillo, thx. The sentiments stand, but I agree they don't help Montana.

  23. Montana,

    Count me in on the "well done"s, "thank you"s etc.

    You do a fantastic job here and I for one am very grateful. Good call on the anon thing too, after all it's not like you actually have to give any real info to get a Google account!

    Scherfig, tell me you were joking with what you said to Bru? I thought you were but now I'm not so sure. If I may offer my own, very humble opinion (and that's all it is, just to be clear to the lurkers et. al.) if you meant it you were a bit harsh.

  24. Martillo

    Thanks - it's nice to know some of the men on here have some manners and realise when it's time to lighten up the atmosphere. For about the third or fourth time I missed the big bust-up (and I'm grateful for that) and I repeat that more than anyone (and I think Montana will agree with me) I have supported her in her endeavours with the UT and the Phone Booth.

    I am appalled at the treatment she gets frankly and have said so in emails to her personally.

    But we owe it to her not to wallow in whatever argument broke out and I'm damned if I'm going to bore myself witless reading through the rubbish the trolls posted.

    And yes - I do have better things to do than be on the brunt of an ill-mannered rant so if that continues it's au revoir from me, much as I support Montana in what she's doing.

  25. Sorry guys, I think I might join Monkey, Hank and Bru in the wilderness of sanity.

    I have never seen so much obsession flying around on all sides of the corner.

    The primary reason I access the web in this manner (i.e. posting on CiF or elsewhere...there are plenty of other reasons for accessing the web) is to try different ways of debate, explore ideas, challenge nonsense when it hits me. If some arsehole has a pop at me, I still go home a happy chap at night (or not, but that's not dependent on html on the web) and live life in pubs, at home, with a book, with interest.

    I have never and will never understand this West Side Story style vendetta between BTH and others in no particular order. I don't even know what BTH's opinions are (I vaguely remember agreeing with him on a thread about prostitution but that's about it); I barely know what other people's opinions are, because all I ever read is some defensive shite about the UT, BTH and other trivial stuff.

    I suggest (but no doubt will be harangued for this) that some people take a step back from html on their screens. Like Bru, I find the tone displeasing and the obsession worrying. Don't get me wrong, I dish out where and when I can (as some might know :0) but I also take it as hard as I can play (sorry for the dreadful cliches...I would rephrase, but cannot be arsed right now).

    It's html for Christ sake, and what I'm interested in (and what I think makes debates interesting) are ideas.

    I'm sorry that some people get bogged down with this 'off-screen' and have always said so, even if I don't quite comprehend it, but I'm not sure what this nettiquette stuff or rules etc are for. I hope no one takes this the wrong way (because it isn't meant as such), but I'm slightly perplexed at what goes on here.

  26. Nelson eye Scherfig!

    Then one day I will tell you the tale of how Mungo seduced me into promising him a Nelson jacket complete with gold epaulets for Christmas (Sorry the Scottish holiday).

    ".....it all came about whilst Mungo was watching some footage of Michael Jackson following his demise....."

  27. PCC

    For the record I think BTH was totally out of order to bring it up on Cif

    Yes, but so is everyone else for going on about the same old fucking topic. Has it occurred to anyone that Monkeyfish has left?? I didn't see one response saying, hang on, Monkey, are you sure?

    Monkey is worthwhile, as is Hank, as is Bru. I just don't get the obsession with BTH, ultima, or any one else. If it's their ideas, then debate them, but I'm too many moons past school to be gossiping behind people's back about this, that and the other.

  28. Only found page 2 of yesterday's thread at 1800 today, though the fact that nous parlons Francais ici maintenant, threw me, as the only time I've really tried to use what little French I remember from my school days, was 14 years ago in a place called Arlon (Bru might know of it). Unfortunately, the para-commando I was trying to speak to was confused by both my appalling misuse of the language, but also by the fact that he was a Fleming & normally only spoke Dutch :)

    If 3p4 pops in, welcome to those in B.C. I can really sympathise with the skunk sprayed dog. We used to get local pets sprayed fairly frequently when I was growing up near Toronto. It's perhaps the most disgusting smell you can ever encounter &, even after the tomato juice bath (try that with a cat), hangs around for days.

  29. olching

    I get what you are saying. I only starting contributing to stuff on line in 2003, when we got broadband at home, and on the music forum I mod there has always been a "schism", for want of a better word, between those who take what is posted seriously (and I tend to fall into that category) and those who say "Wow! The intarwebs iz so seeerious guyz LOL" and don't take it as part of real life.

    I don't know what it is that makes the difference between the two types of posters, but there is a very palpable difference. I don't know who has it right and who has it wrong. But I do know that some people will get upset at online stuff that other people would just ignore or laugh at.

    But isn't that the way life is in general?

  30. ... and Olching

    "I didn't see one response saying, hang on, Monkey, are you sure? "

    Well you weren't looking very hard then, were you? :p

  31. Olching

    The worst aspect is that I never - ever - make personal attacks against other posters, although there have been times when I wished I had.

    And I will not bear the brunt of someone else's frustration with what happened last night which was nothing - I repeat - nothing to do with me.

  32. Sorry, Dot, I wasn't joking. However bru has now told me 'not to take that tone with her', and not 'to dare start those comments with me', so like the pleb I obviously am, I'll bow down to my superiors. What really made me angry was the claim that 'I have supported Montana consisently when no one else did'. That's not my recollection of any reality, and I'd ask bru just exactly how she has ever supported montana in any concrete way, and how she knows anything about what I did or didn't do before she ever came on the scene. I would also remind bru that she first came into the Untrusted and the PB because I posted a link to her on Cif.

  33. OK Scherf, since I fall roughly into BB's second category and I'm about to head to the cinema with my bro and a mate, I'm off, for tonight at least.

  34. Oh isn't it great, not to have any Anon posters to need to scroll on by.

  35. Well done Scherfig!

    Might I suggest to everyone that it might be a nice thing for Montana if we all dropped the dramatics (I'm hardly one to talk I know)for a while?

    You can find ideas here, olching, the occasional cleansing tantrum notwithstanding. Maybe it's time we explored the writing thing a little more...

  36. Anyway, let's stop all this and change the subject to something that fucking freaked me out at Gatwick Airport at the crack of sparrow fart this morning.

    I am just about used to seeing armed rozzers wandering about the place with their machine guns and head sets and SWAT-type baseball hats on. It took me a while, mind.

    But today I was sat on the Gatwick Express, waiting for it to pull out, and 6 of the buggers, guns and all, with a sniffer dog, came onto the train - from their conversation they weren't actually looking for anything specific, just, you know, looking - and went from carriage to carriage, the dog sniffing everyone's luggage, machine guns in their hand.

    Welcome to fucking Britain!

    It scared the shits out of me, and I live here....

  37. BB

    Well you weren't looking very hard then, were you?

    An ironic, non-committal comment, well fair enough, BB.


    Yes, I know you never dish out personal abuse, all credit to you. I do occasionally (but only when tied up with an idea...), but I accept it in turn. And I agree with the rest of your post.

  38. Dot, what film? Recommendation or otherwise tomorrow please.

  39. Bru

    Don't leave. I for one like having you around here


    Don't nag. You sound like my scottish Nana.

    And yes, I think it's time to move on from the drama.


    No. 1 Drama Queen :o)

  40. Scherfig

    Every time she had a problem with anarchy "in the ranks" I supported her - after the business with Hank, after another bust-up when everyone was at each other's throats - just ask her or go through my posts.

    And I emailed her personally on a number of occasions.

    It doesn't matter how I came on the link - I'm not going to take personal attacks when I never indulge in them myself. When have I ever attacked any poster either here on in the PB?

    I came on here reluctantly as it happens - I wasn't too sure whether I wanted to be in a chatroom at all and it was only because Kiz was here that I did. I also - when you were in another fit of pique and threatening to leave - asked you not to go but to take a break.

    If you have to find a victim to vilify every month, one minute one person, now it seems me, then I suggest you look long and hard at the problem. If last night bothers you so much it may be time to take a longish break because no internet chat room is worth it.

    And it's nothing to do with "superiors and plebs" and everything to do with simple good manners.

  41. BB

    Regarding sniffer dogs. I was once doing some work at a nick in County Durham when they came looking for volunteers for a sniffer dog demo they were putting on for the Chief Constable. Anyway, myself & the project manager agreed to be the "suspects" & she was more than a wee bit shocked to be "fingered" by the cocker spaniel they were using. Turns out, the dogs can be distracted by pregnant women, for some reason, but she was so early in the pregnancy, she hadn't even told her partner yet.

  42. Olching,

    Ironic, non-committal?

    Well I am not the kind to say "oh god, noes! Please don't go! I really like your posts and the world will come to an end without you!" and blow my nose loudly into my hanky.

    (As Hank well knows, for one. (The git). :p)

    Especially not to blokes, in case they might think they are being hit on by a not-quite-middle-aged bonkers lawyer.

    But yes, that was my expression of regret at the notion that MF might not post here any more. And I imagine he probably took it to mean that too.

  43. Ochling I posted

    "........HankScorpio/Monkeyfish are innocent only this afternoon over on yesterdays UT thread.

    I know Andy again raised the message over on CiF this very week and got deleted. Both Hank and Monkey have been here recently and what BB says/hints is true. She went out of her way to encourage MF to keep in touch.

    I and others would be very sad if they didn't from time to time resurface here.

    What we all might think about when the shit slides from the walls here is how we keep the debate open - and to keep considering if we the UT can somehow make a collective response that would cause the mods to at least reconsider.

    Lets not delude ourselves the issue of free (and even angry) speech (complex as that is) is what many of us here are about.

    We have much in common to bring us together and little of significance to push us apart.

  44. Olching - I actually agree with what you say. I have never said anything about BTH or Ultima on here before because i have not had an issue with them personally. And as I said above I actually enjoy some of their posts and think they can say interesting things - and even if you do not agree with them it is good to read people whose opinions you do not agree with. And I have actually changed some of my opinions since posting on Cif which is surely the best outcome from online debate - that people can learn things and start to see things in a different way.

    But I do think it was wrong to bring this place up in the WDYWTTA thread so that Montana had to go and defend herself. That is not to say though that I would not still hope to discuss things with BTH on threads etc I just think bringing it up on Cif was unessecary. Why should she explain and why should it matter how many forums have been set up?

    That is all I was saying. I hope you do not go Olching as I love your posts often and ideas. Anyway I am out of here as need to make tea and I don't want to make things worse - that was not my intention.

    I just wanted to give Montana my support and maybe we should just go back to debating articles and books and music and stuff (I seriously meant it when I said I have learnt some stuff on here). I was in a forum once for people with ME and it was cancelled in the end because the person who had set it up could not be doing with the hassle and I think it would be a shame if that happened here - even as a newbie.

  45. GP01

    It wasn't so much the sniffer dog - a lovely little cocker spaniel as it goes - but the guns that did my head in. Walking around with the gun in your hand just seems so bloody unnecessary.

    And frankly, if someone had planted a bomb somewhere - assuming that is what they at least thought was the justification for what they were doing - what fucking good is a machine gun any way?

    I just don't like it. I don't think it's necessary in a democratic society to have stooges running round armed to the teeth.

    On another note, you remember when there was all that bullshit, prior to the first big Anti War March, when Blair militarised Heathrow, with tanks round it and all sorts, to warn us all of the "threat"?

    I happened to be at the Gatwick South terminal the night before the march and there was not a rozzer in sight, armed or otherwise. Talk about taking us all for eejits....

  46. BB,

    Well perhaps. I just wonder how much will be left once people like Hank, Monkey, and now Bru leave who do offer substance; I remember Bru always used to comment on the Balkans on CiF...perhaps 3 years ago...that's what interests me, not mutual backslapping and cliquing.

  47. BB thanks

    A propos police - I was outside my bank in Brussels one day when two men in jeans and t-shirt grabbed a very tall well-built black man and brandished revolvers in his face. I was just about to call the police on my mobile when I realised the gunmen were plain clothes policemen trying to arrest the guy. He got away simply by divesting himself of his jacket and running like hell with the law after him waving their guns.

    Never did find out what happened but it does shake you a bit.

    Another time I missed by minutes an incident in which a young girl was shot dead by a richoteting bullet from a police firearm. The police car was chasing another car and trying to fire at the tyres to immobilise it. The poor young girl, who I had noticed waiting at the bus stop, took a hit in the head.

    That's the problem over here - the police are always armed and you never know when an accident can happen.

  48. Agreed and thanks, PCC. I picked out a quote from you, as it was the nearest thing that I came across...didn't want to misrepresent you at all.

  49. 'We have much in common to bring us together and little of significance to push us apart.'

    Amen to that Deano.

    Re the sniffer dog thing BB - it IS scary the way the UK is beginning to feel like a police state. I had to go to court with my sister the other day (to stop Npower baliffing her) and the security was mind boggling. It was like being in an airport and this big burly guy opened my handbag and emptied out my make up bag which had a tampax in it. Nice! In front of everyone - is there no privacy anymore?
    Right really off to make tea now.

  50. Can I suggest that we all just chill out a little?

    There are various comments which have appeared on this thread I could take issue with some or all of, but I really don’t think now is the time.

    All of us who have been here in the past few days have been put through the wringer, and those who are just arriving now are likely to be even more confused as to what the fuck has been going on.

    Discussing who said what to whom where and when and whether they should have done so isn’t going to help anyone right now, is it?

    I’m not going to suggest a group hug, but maybe we should try to be specially understanding and supportive for a while.

    I don’t want anyone to leave, and I also want everyone to feel that they are welcome to stay.

    It’s time we rebuilt some of the community feeling which is usually so strong here but which has been eroded to some extent by what’s gone on recently.

    And I hope that Montana will join in, because I’m sure we’d all agree that she is the most valued member of our community, and the one who seems to have been hurt the most.

  51. Nobody here owes me any apologies. Things can bother me only insofar as I let them and I probably let them bother me far more than I should. I'm sure I've told you all before that this is as close to a circle of friends as I have at this point in my life, so I'm sure that plays into things. I guess that makes me pretty pathetic, but that's my reality.

    Scherfig, Bru has indeed been very supportive both publicly and privately, as have you. I appreciate and think the world of both of you. No offence whatsoever about her post, okay?

    Mandrillbp: Welcome and thank you for your kind words.

    Olching: Yes, I'm quite distressed about Hank and Monkeyfish and I e-mailed them last night about it. It was certainly never my intention to alienate them, of all people, but I'm at a bit of a loss as to how asking everyone to show a bit of courtesy to Bella and Jessica is an unpardonable sin on my part. They surely know that I think they were treated abominably by the Graun, but Jessica and Bella aren't the people responsible for that. Working for the Graun doesn't automatically make them evil.

    As for BTH -- he only gets mentioned here when he starts attacking one or all of us on Cif. You haven't been the direct target of any of it, Olching, so it's a bit easier for you to shrug it off. He's an odious little creep and I'm quite happy to join with most everyone else here in saying so.

  52. That's what happens when you arm the police as a policy. Whether it is accidents or just plain gung-ho fuckwittery, innocent people will die.

    And if the rozzers are armed as a matter of course, crims will start arming themselves as a matter of course to be able to respond.

    (That's not to say that there aren't enough crims with guns already. So much for the "ban" on handguns - although at least it means that just having one has you in serious schtuck, irrespective of what you were intending to do with it)

    While I am on a rant, I also saw the weirdest thing just near Manc Picadilly today. A huge electronic billboard with ads on it up the side of a building. Then suddenly there is a face of a young-looking black guy with the word "Wanted" - I thought it was an ad at first, until they started saying "£15,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of So and So, wanted for murder".

    Reminded me of Minority Report...

    Anyhoo, my dinner is ready so I will be back later. x

  53. everyone moves closer to agreements by reading on the lines instead of between them,,

  54. Montana:

    Welcome back to Untrusted :-)

  55. Montana - don't suppose I could buy lunch tommorow could I?

    Don't give up on us babe.

  56. Deano -- you can buy lunch any time. No, I won't be giving up on any of you. Just makes me sad when people give up on me.

  57. I see Anne is still continuing the discussion on her piece with a few people on WDY..?

    How many days has she been at it now?

    She’s got to be the most hard working ATL contributor in the history of Cif.

    She Works Hard For The Money

  58. Montana: No one who matters is giving up on you.

    (and by that I mean that Hank and monkey won’t give up on you, not that they don’t matter)

  59. Hi Montana

    I do feel you get a raw deal from just trying to do everyone a good turn

    However if I could make a practical suggestion when things get really sticky as they seemed to have done last night. Is it not possible, instead following the comments till the crack of doom, just to shut down your computer and go and - well I don't know - read a book, look at TV, walk the dog - just anything rather than let a bunch of nitwits get to you?

    Because I don't post as often over here as most people I tend to miss out on the fireworks and perhaps that's a good thing because I don't wake up the next morning feeling like I could murder the world and his brother.

    Get a perspective - the trolls who post are not people you know in real life and you wouldn't even recognise them if you tripped over them in the street. How then can they possibly affect you in any meaningful way?

    Alternatively couldn't the regulars here just move to the PB and leave the various Anons to jabber at themselves?

    Just a thought. And a more useful one than taking out your frustration on someone who wasn't even involved in the fracas in the first place.

  60. Thanks Montana for the blog and lose no sleep over the argybargy ('Don't let it bring you down/It's only castles burning'); come back monkeyfish& hank & other absent friends; Bru I always really liked your posts on Cif and on here (and we love that dragon too in oor hoose); and as andy says calm down guys. With all the trolls sulking we really shouldn't be making their day by snapping at one another.

    It's just gab but it's good gab and that's pretty rare on the interweb thingy!

    BB agree about the police; stick a gun in a bobby's hand and he becomes a strutting vaquero

  61. Ach, sorry I'm not as new as I look. This is just Fencewalker, and I fugged up opening a Google Account.

  62. Bugger. Does anyone know how to change your name in Google Accounts?
    Sounds like the sort of clever thing Andysays could do (thanks for the welcomes btw!)

  63. Thanks Edwin Moore

    There's no chance I'll be giving up on CiF. I do sometimes like to lighten things up a bit because even there it can get pretty over-serious at times.

    We don't seem to get so many fun articles on the front page any more but a lot of worthy stuff. Maybe it's to do with the recession and things will lighten up a bit when the worst is over.

    Think I'll call it a night you all. If any trolls come calling move into castle PB.

    Montana - have a good weekend.

  64. On Reading between the lines and knowing someones
    entire Pantheon of Mistaken Opinions through the
    shape of a Few Words and Attributing the Path of the Tanker to the Actions of a few Spratts

    there has never been a single fact FACT thats shows anything concrete and objective about the
    corporate and personal and professional agendas and motivations of cif staff or the Gu site.

    there is endless supposition,,

    even the simplest statement gets radically opposed interpretations,,

    such as Georgina saying "maybe we should ban you again"

    i thought it was a witty tolerant post but they to whom it was adressed found the polar opposite
    if it had been adressed to me i think i would have said Touche,,

    where is the facts in either reading

    does the truth matter if there is not trust as a starting point,,

    if "they made you do it" who has power ?
    piss on my leg and tell me its raining Sunshine
    was a really good post,,and i dont ever pick you for No.1 DramaQueen,,in fact if i picked a poster team i would want you to be the captain,,
    you have a wonderful combination of the velvet glove iron fist,,very polite,,very logical,very powerful,,and dogged,,

    Bru,,been a long time since i told you "you look marvelous today darlink"

    the wildhack rocks

    its actually a little egofeeding to know i am a
    Major Irritant to someone out there,,

  65. "piss on my leg and tell me its raining Sunshine"

    Hehehehe... that post has gone, as has the "originating" one that provoked me.

    I was also a tad drunk last night (in case no-one noticed :p) having had a long hard day at work and attacked a bottle of red as well as I could to numb the senses. :o)

    The spoken word is my bread and butter really. I usually have to think more carefully about what I write, tho, cos it doesn't come quite so easy to me. Unless I'm drunk :p

  66. Bru - we are not all PB key holders.

    If you were all to depart I would miss you - all of you.

    I think I have been given an invite but I'm not, and don't ever need to be, 100% sure.

    I would on the same principle that Marx (Groucho)
    had for dealing with these complex social questions have declined the invitation. Albeit whilst feeling flattered at the invite.

    Hell girl, the lady said she would join me for lunch why do I need to hang about in PB's.

    All I have to do now is start saving from me pension.


  67. Yesss! I must have a foot like a traction engine!

  68. Montana,

    I'm with Bru on this. I don't get the obsession and find it off-putting. I've been posting at CiF for too long now not to have been on the receiving end (here too as we know!); sometimes due to disagreements and sometimes with outright lies.

    That's debating online for you. But amongst all that there are people like the abovementioned disappeared, and even people who I disagree with vehemently, but who are interested in ideas.

    Look, BTH acted pathetically in his call on the WDYWTTA thread, but I do not get the obsession (from both sides). I actually remember agreeing with some of his ideas (on prostitution I think, though it's vague). In any case, let's think about ideas.

  69. In the spirit of sweetness and light that happily seems to have pervaded this troubled place, and in spite of the various unpleasantnesses that have been so quickly swept under the carpet, I'd like to apologise to anyone who feels even slightly offended by anything I've said. (Not that I didn't mean it at the time.)

    Bru, a personal apology to you. I am sure that I have misjudged you, but of course your claim that you stood up for Montana when noone else did is patently untrue, and it was arrogant of you to say so. But that's by the by, I apologise
    unconditionally if I gave offense. If, as olching says, you were a poster 'of substance' three years ago, then why not try to say something of substance again instead of telling us all about glasses of champagne and weekends in a chateau. I, for one, would be interested in hearing something a bit more serious from you.

  70. BB agree about the police; stick a gun in a bobby's hand and he becomes a strutting vaquero

    stick a keyboard on someones desk and they become

    if one reads inspector gadgets blog for a day or two one might find the same discrepancies in iterpretation twixt
    reading along the lines or between the lines
    applies to cops as it does to GU staff and atls
    and other btl posters,,

    the cops on gadgets blog are good people as pissed off (more) as the public is about the state of the force

    this is not any attack on edwin,,if you read it as keyboard on "Edwins Desk" thats in your head not my words,,

    and Edwin i dont mean your reading,, i mean the Readers reading

    i trust the way edwin reads so i used his words,,

  71. I enjoyed that Andy - it's rare for me to get a 3.3 min vid without constant breakdowns in the link.

    The Atmosphere is working well for me today.

  72. Oh laaaa...

    It always turns out like this, Montana, don't stress. People disagree - and they disagree fundamentally about fundamentals. Sometimes they disagree so much they'll kill each other. This is the nature of humanity - and it echoes even here. Even digitally. Even between people who might be, or might have been, friends.

    Lots of people here disagree with me - most I guess - but I see familiar names like Olching and Monkeyfish and Hank and Summerisle and BB and Brusselsexpat and I know if not agreement, at least I can find intelligence.

    But look, don't get hung up on anger, or disagreement, or abuse. It is the way it is. resilience is required. Resilience, humour, and forgetfullness. See me, I have so many arguments, but my memory is awful, so they all pass.

    Been sailing all day today with the scouts, drizzle, wind, water, laughter, dunkings... Can't be angry or upset with anyone. Have a drink, throw yourself in a lake. Works for me..

  73. BB - there is no question but that, as ever, you were in total control of your fingers last night.

    Some people quite simply make sense no matter which way the wind blows - you young miss are such a person.

  74. This comment has been removed by the author.

  75. I would love to throw you in lake Frank - but on this occasion your words are wise.

  76. Arse - posted that badly. Here it is again:


    It's true to say that making sweeping generalisations about the police - as with any other profession or walk of society - has to be wrong.

    I come across a fair number of rozzers during the course of my work. Most are ordinary run-of-the-mill, do their job, cover their asses, road of least resistance kind of people. Some are outstanding at their work. There are some, however, who are just plain evil buggers. And the idea of one of them having a gun fills me with absolute dread

  77. scherfig (and others who don’t seem to have taken the hint):

    I’m not suggesting that things should be swept under the carpet never to be seen again.

    I’m sure we’ll be back to having a good old scrap in the near future, and I’ll be getting involved if I feel it’s appropriate.

    I’m just suggesting that we leave it for now, because as someone said above, there’s more that unites us than divides us.

  78. Frank

    I hope you have been CRB checked!

    Only kidding... :P

    Wise words, my friend, wise words.

  79. Fencewalker:

    *Does anyone know how to change your name in Google Accounts?*

    It now appears that you do.

    *Sounds like the sort of clever thing Andysays could do*

    Kind of you to say so, but I’ve never had occasion to try (although I did change my icon picture yesterday, which I was very proud of).

    If I ever do want to change my name to, I don’t know, traneroundthebanned or something, I’ll know who to ask.

  80. Hi Frank, good to see you.

    In all seriousness, have the Scouts asked you to get CRB checked?

    I was asked a few years ago when my daughter was going to the Woodcraft Folk, and I was going to get involved with helping.

    I declined, not because I got anything to hide, but because I objected in principle.

    But I think someone on Cif the other day said that the Scouts have some sort of exemption from new legislation, or extra time to sort it out, or something.

  81. 3p4 & BB:

    I come into daily contact with all of the emergency services, through work, & most of them are decent people who would love to be actually out there dealing with the things that they thought they were signing up to do. They want to do those things that could, to some extent make peoples' lives better; be it catching actual criminals, fighting fires or saving lives, but they are so tied up with, paperwork, targets, initiatives & Government sponsored, high profile, campaigns that they have little time for anything but being seen to be responding to these. Sure, there willl be some whoo get a kick out of looking like something out of a TV drama (more & more like soap operas these days, I find), but this really doesn't apply to the majority I've met.

  82. BB

    And the idea of one of them having a gun fills me with absolute dread

    the pen is mightier than the sword

    the sword cuts deep
    and so does the pen
    they both leave their mark
    in the lives of men
    the sword is silent
    but not so the pen

    i dont see too may bullets on a day to day basis but i sure see a lot of words,,

  83. GP04

    I agree with you. I was chatting to a chap who works for the CPS the other day. He used to be a solicitor then moved over to the Dark Side with the best of intentions, but is getting bogged down in the every changing targets and policies and procedures and knee-jerk bits of crap that come down from on high every time the Daily Mail has a screaming fit about something.

    No way to run a whorehouse, if you ask me. I understand fully what the Met guy meant the other day when he was talking about the politicisation of the police.

  84. In all seriousness, have the Scouts asked you to get CRB checked?

    Sure - and I have, enhanced CRB *hactually*. In principle, I object too. But I trash my principles whenever practicality demands it - and as I support scouting and want to help out, I knuckled under and had the checks. But as it happens... the check was wrong anyway. They didn't find something they should have done... Not that it's something the scouts would worry about anyway - far from it I think.

    Lots of things I disagree with in scouting; all the religious bumf etc. But lots more I support, so I bend. Which... now I think of it, is kind of what I have been doing in the dinghies today too - you see which way the wind is blowing, and you work with it to get where you want to go. Sometimes that means you travel out of your way, sometimes it means you go nowhere. You can work the wind intelligently, but you cannot beat it. Pragmatism my friends. Know when the world is going your way, know when it is not, know what you can defeat, know what you must work with.

    Ah grasshopper.

  85. True that, 3p4

    The french say "les paroles s'en vont, les ecrits restent", meaning spoken words fly away but written words stay.

  86. Frank, regarding the scouts, you could maybe help with this. I read on the SA website that all current volunteers were CRB checked. Fair enough. They also said that all new volunteers would need an ISA check but that they expected that current volunteers would not need an ISA check for about five years. If this is the case, why have the Scout Association got an exemption that, as far as I know, applies to noone else? having 'consulted with the government for some months', as they put it, was it the pay-off for publicly supporting the hugely unpopular ISA legislation?

  87. But I trash my principles whenever practicality demands it

    fuck i love common sense,,

    so much so i used profanity for the first time on untrusted for emphasis

    FUCK i love common sense

    But I trash my principles whenever practicality demands it

    me too but this practicality falls under the heading of "the common good" or "the greater good"

    But I trash my principles whenever practicality demands it

    a blunt way of saying sometimes the collective is more important than the individual,,

    but i know thats an anathema to you frank

    i thought you were Mandrillpb first time i saw the moniker,, :)

  88. Shame a troll attack has led to arguing between ourselves. Think we need something more substantial to disagree about. Come on Frank, give us something to get our teeth into.

    And I didn't know Monkeyfish had left - must have missed that post. Sad, he'll be missed, I hope he decides to drop back in.

    BB - you can rent a handgun round here for about £30 for 24 hours - a bit more if you want a clip of ammunition too, (at least so I'm told).

    We had a biggish drug case here a month or two ago and the court was surrounded by armed police strutting their stuff. Scary and unpleasant but increasingly ubiquitous unfortunately

  89. The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
    Moves on: nor all your Piety nor Wit
    Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
    Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it

  90. Frank - if you is BP fan my friend you is a collectivist.

    Shit horror (I mean this warmly tonight) arch individualist places his son in care of arch collectivist organisation.

    Welcome home Brother Frank.

  91. a blunt way of saying sometimes the collective is more important than the individual,,

    Not at all. My self interest is served by jumping through hoops for scouting. How so? 'Cus my kids get a lot out of it, and if there were no volunteers and no leaders it wouldn't happen. I help out to ensure it is there for my kids - and yes, to ensure that the environment they grow up in is a *little* better. No altruism involved. Also, today was a laugh, even though my knees and back are now killing me.

    Sherfig, dunno, can't help you on that - I've heard nothing about it. Certainly hasn't been mentioned to me. Discussion among adults today centred on what a fucking arsehole Gordon Brown was, how far people would have to be pushed in this country before they'd revolt, and sloe gin.

  92. Shame a troll attack has led to arguing between ourselves.

    actually Sheff i think the latest incidents show just how stable this place is,,it really is exceptional in its stability and common (efFn) sense,,

  93. Sheff - I didn't read any absolutism into Monkeyfish's departure.

    Collectivists need the company of............collectivists. It's what makes the world turn tha knows.

  94. Frank, that would seem par for the course regarding this legislation. If a CRB-checked scout volunteer doesn't even know whether he is required to have an ISA check within the next year or if he can happily ignore the legal requirement for the next five years, then the thing is fucked before it even starts. Although we knew that anyway. Check out the Scout Association's website. They apparently prioritize PR and spin and 'informing the public' over telling their own members what the fuck's going on.

  95. Hey Frank - you is a class act and I oft enjoy your posts but:

    "......ensure it is there for my kids... "

    What's the 'it' you are ensuring?

  96. Frank

    Sloe gin - now you're talking. If I can find the sloes will definitely make some for christmas - if not Damsons are nearly as good.

    And surely volunteering with the scouts has the effect of benefiting other peoples kids as well as your own - which is good for the community and therefore, arguably, an act of collective consideration - even if not altruistic. does that make sense? bit pissed so hard to tell.

  97. a blunt way of saying sometimes the collective is more important than the individual,,

    Not at all. My self interest is served by jumping through hoops for scouting. How so? 'Cus my kids get a lot out of it,

    i cant explain it Frank, i aint smart enough,,but
    i am agreeing with you but that agreement says the opposite in my world to yours

    you walk away saying its blue
    i walk away saying its red

    we both said "wow that's a great color

    like i said " just dont tell frank it was red" (anathema)

    No altruism involved.

    exactly,,its just common sense,,

    i know your fluent enough to swim the channel frank but
    now i am going back to the shallow end,, before i get drowned,, i cant possibly argue with you

  98. debate,,
    i mean debate not argue
    i dont argue with anyone
    waste of time

  99. 3p4
    actually Sheff i think the latest incidents show just how stable this place is,,it really is exceptional in its stability and common (efFn) sense,,

    Agree - there's a good bunch of people round here.

  100. Frank:

    Good on you for taking the time to work with kids.

    I never got into the Scouting movement. My father always wanted to join the RN, but never could, & forced four of his five kids to join Sea Cadets, with the hope they'd eventually join either the RCN or RN (It was such a disappointment to him when I joined the army instead - not my choice at the time, though I don't regret it - that he disowned me :)).

    We live in a society where anyone who wants to work with kids has so many obstacles placed in their way that far too many just decide to give up; one need only look at teaching where they are desperately crying out for men to enter the profession, & yet any that do are seen as potential paedophiles (thankfully, Gregory Carlin, AKA Yvette Doll, of the Irish Anti-Trafficking Coalition has never found either CIf or this place - Cath more or less banned him from her blog). So we have a situation in which there is a distinct lack of positive role models for kids to follow & that's where organisations like the Scouts come in.

    Kids need the chance to socialise, be challenged & learn new skills & it is from those who commit their time to such groups that they, often learn these skills.

    So again, good on you.

  101. In
    the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over against
    the candlestick upon the plaister of the wall of the king's palace: and
    the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. (5:6) Then the king's
    countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints
    of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another.

    so kinda like canoeing then

  102. 3p4:

    Remember Peirre Burton's classic remark that a Canadian is someone who knows how to make love in a canoe :)

  103. OOPS! Pierre Burton. Told you my French was very fusty.

  104. Hey 3p4

    You found the link (which I don't have but will find if you can't) for the UK National Arboretum?

    From next month the pictures of the National collection of Acers is fucking magic.

    Acers in autumn is quite something!

  105. GP01

    "Kids need the chance to socialise, be challenged & learn new skills & it is from those who commit their time to such groups that they, often learn these skills."

    How to do it without having a collectivist view is something of a mystery to me.

  106. Frank:

    That makes a great deal of sense (never thought I’d be saying that to you, but it’s a special night tonight).

    I agree that you do have to bend or accommodate your principles to the situation you’re in. I wondered whether I was correct to just refuse point black to go through that checking process – if it had been something that my daughter had been really keen on and my not getting checked would have meant she couldn’t do it, I think I would have swallowed my reservations and gone ahead.

    Good on you for doing stuff with the Scouts, even if you're trying to convince us it's for purely self-centred motives.


    It was you who brought this up on Cif the other day, wasn’t it?

    I’m not surprised that Frank hasn’t been given the word from the Scout Association. Bringing all this stuff in will be an ongoing bureaucratic nightmare. I reckon some organisations will literally have to employ CRB/ISA compliance officers in order to cope.

    I work as a volunteer for the National Trust. They are absolutely dependant on volunteers, couldn’t function without them, and I’m sure there are many other organisations in a similar position.

    There are six paid staff where I work, and between twenty and thirty volunteers, who work varying levels of time each week. Some of the work involves children, so those who do that are supposed to be checked.

    And two of the volunteers who I often work with have learning difficulties, so people working with them should also be checked. Because people vary the days in the week when they work, that means that everyone who works there, in theory, needs to be checked.

    I don’t know if they’re fully aware of this, but even if everyone who works there is happy to be checked, actually carrying that out would be a huge drain in terms of manpower and time, even if the National Trust doesn’t have to pay for it. The most likely outcome, if it goes ahead, is that these two guys will be told they can’t come anymore, or at least they’ll be restricted in what they can do.

    And that would be such a shame, because they get so much out of it. I know from my own experience getting through depression that being able to get out and do something with other people is so important, even if you’re not able to accomplish a huge amount (I hope that doesn't sound patronising. It's not meant to, but I'm too tired to rephrase it).

    This CRB/ISA stuff really hasn’t been thought through, and so many mistakes will be made, both false negatives and false positives, that it’s really a complete nonsense.

    After all, if Frank can get enhanced clearance, there’s obviously something seriously wrong ;-)

  107. Good night all - especially Montana.

    Tough 48 hours - I guess we will have worse but whilst Montana is properly regarded as a very special friend to us all - there will be nought we can't sort.

  108. Goodnight deano: wise words (as so often) on departing.

  109. Well, Deano, I think the collectivist thing is something that we have to accept; even in the playground kids tend to form into groups, is kids are going to have the opportunity to try out new activities & interact in such a way that they gain the ability to get along in society when they move on to adult life (if my understanding of collectivist is right - not a term I've come across before).

    I mean, you can learn a lot within your familyl; even if a lot of, what are seen as traditional, families are really fucked up these days (I dont hold that the nuclear family is the all it's cracked up to be, as a lot of single parent family kids do well for themselves), but there are things which you have to do as a group &, by their very nature, these tend to be organised activities. Such activities need organisations & people who are willing to give up their time in order to make them possible.

  110. Acers in autumn is quite something!

    my neighbourhood is full of them,, wide range of colors,,leaf proportions,,

    vancouver is a rich place for tree afficionados,, i could probably find forty varities within ten minutes walk (i walk really slow)

  111. Back for two minutes.

    Scherfig - I often post on very serious issues on CiF. Perhaps if you go back you'll see that I've posted a number of times on US healthcare and dire poverty (Abramsky's thread). Have posted quite frequently on the treatment of immigrants and the paucity of the jobseeker's allowance in the UK. Then there was the malaria issue in Africa and a number of cultural issues where I enjoyed a two-way dialogue with Teacup.
    Plus I've just posted on two very serious threads about the issue of divorce and women's settlements.

    How serious do you want me to get? As serious as most people here who very often (and I'm not complaining because it's fun) only have time to post links to YouTube clips and their favourite singers/songs?

    I haven't been back from my holidays for very long and I do (this evening notwithstanding) have a very busy life. I just don't have the time for lengthy articles on CiF but to say I don't "do" serious issues is ridiculous. The Balkans was one of my specialities in Brussels during the wars and I have a number of times commented on Misha Glenny's articles.

    It's all there on CiF if you care to look. I was the only one who had actually read Abramsky's recent book on Breadline USA so cut out the sarcasm.

    I post as my mood takes me - I think I mentioned champagne once yesterday on the Waddya thread, someone else (Sheffpixie?) mentioned a bottle of red wine.

    How many people on here talk about their drinking habits? It doesn't bother me and mine shouldn't bother you.

  112. Crap - I kept up with comments until about halfway down this page.

    There was an anonymous poster a couple of days a go that warned how this blog might go as he had seen it before.

    I tend to agree with him, seems to be going biblical in a way.

    Frankly you treat new users like wank. You may not care for me at all but feck it I'm old enough that it doesn't matter. And also it really doesn't matter to me at all. It's a bloody blog. So you can happily ignore me as you always do.

    But in case you are still reading, I tend not to be an outspoken soul and I was with this blog right from the start and then I read and "lurked" for a bit and then I do comment and I get the third fucking degree from a fucking rank outsider accusing me of being a fucking troll as I posted a link to a fucking Rage song (btw if you want fucking contemporary political songs you might want to get with the fucking program and move into something approaching the 20th c rather than fall back on that old stalwart and boring but safe option of the fucking sex pistols).

    And the "welcome" extended is very often patronising and clearly in some ways control freaky/obsessive compulsive.

    Cheers guys, you made it what it is.

    Whilst I am here - Bru = Alexander. Clearly a bloke. Playing at being a high fashion, trendy oh so cultured brusselite.

  113. Before I fall asleep my friend GP01

    (if my understanding of collectivist is right - not a term I've come across before).

    I use the word collectivist as an identifier a flag on a pole in a wilderness.

    When I use I the word there is no precision nor absolute quality it about it. It has an undeniable ambiguity about it.

    But for me - It's a flag, a kite, a word that humans who do not naturally want to spend all their lives talking about "I" tend to be attracted towards and congregate around.

    In my simple life I always found it a useful word to help me sort the shit from the liquid shit.

    Regards deano

  114. Can't keep my eyes open. No disrespect to all you wonderful posters but I am dog tired and haven't got any energy left to reply this evening. Hopefully I will be back on form tomorrow ;o)

    Nighty night all x

  115. Actually Original (sin) it's an oh-so-trendy Antwerpenaar - een zeer mode-bewuste iemand van de diamantstad.

    Slaap wel mijn zotte kop......

  116. Bru -
    has indeed posted on things like incapacity benefit in a way which prompted me to vote a recommend.

    I must speak as I find.

  117. Then bru - I apologise and let me correct myself.

    Bru = Alexander. Clearly a bloke. Playing at being an oh-so-trendy Antwerpenaar.

  118. Original - don't talk soft. I always pause to read what you have written.

    Don't leave soldier.

  119. I'm fascinated now though, fuck it, said I was done, but am I not.

    "Original (sin)", really? Original sin? Really truly? fuck me

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  121. Thanks Deano - the problem is that often I post (on serious issues) but they are threads which most of the posters here don't follow. However it's simple to look back on anyone's comments before making unfounded accusations.

    I just don't believe in constantly hammering on serious issues - there has to be a balance - because after a while you've said all you can without repeating yourself endlessly. And this is the major problem I find with CiF - there are just too many similar articles to comment on. I would welcome a bit more originality.

    PrincessChipChops came up with a good suggestion I thought and I would certainly comment on that. I also posted on Anne's thread in case anyone didn't notice.

    Really I'm not prepared to undergo the third-degree here - I don't have to justify myself to anyone.

  122. I think it's a very carefully sculpted persona that Bru, a gay man or possibly transsexual in Antwerp has spent months, maybe years developing. Why, if Bru is not a man, is her name Alexander? Is it not Alexander for a boy and Alexandra for a girl?

    Really though, it matters not. Only in that, Bru, I must congratulate you on being so clever and convincing.

  123. Well unless Alexander (how did you know about the name Alexander unless you have access either to my CiF password or have been on the PB?) wears dresses and necklaces, then what can I say?

    Except that my icon is actually a picture of me (minus head à la Anne Boleyn)and I change it regularly because the picture forms part of an inventory and I like to chop and change. I also have many of castles/gardens/cherry trees which I will post as and when the fancy takes me.

    Unless of course I have to ask permission from The Powers That Be - not that I'd take any notice.

    And (not very) Original - don't try and make out I'm a transvestite - you could get sued.

  124. This is another thin, Sheffpixie. I removed a post of my own once. Regarding Abdel Basset Al Mohammed Al Megrahi, expressing the opinion he may have been stitched up. I decided it might be a bit tin hat so deleted it. Some people then, in their own posts said what I said and in an oh so convincing way that they thought my comment wasn't requiring the tin hat. I don't agree with doing that. I mention it as I see you just removed one of your own posts. But I wont be saying what was in it myself. As I don't think that's a nice thing to do.

  125. Bru

    Don't be silly young lady - the very essence of this place is that no one has to justify themselves. But best not to forget that:

    The purpose of being here is the invaluable learning opportunities it affords - the worm may soon take a nasty turn.

    We, who are friends, here may one day have to consider who we would ask to help should we find ourselves with the new yellow star on our coats.

    This place will help you answer that sordid question.

    Hang on in sweet girl - you have interseting things to tell me.

    PCC in my view is a great poster but I would not have been directed to her without this place.

    My life is busy - dreaming of this and that. This place provides signposts and shortcuts to things worth reading

  126. So sue me bru. I know that name because a while ago you signed in here using your google account and it automatically populated your profile with the name associated with your google account. The name being Alexander. (PB? not sure what that is...)

  127. Ooooooh phone booth right? Amex? Yes yes. I see.

  128. Just to avoid confusion in everyone's mind, Alexander is my password not my real name. I use it for CiF purposes only so someone has access to that (eh Original?).

    And I'm warning you against libel. You try it and I'll hand you your head back on a platter.

  129. Bru

    i remember many posts from you when i was dropinbucket,,the first time i told you you were looking great,,i cant remember why it was relevant at the time

    All my life I've been searching for something

    no matter where you go there you are

    Something never comes never leads to nothing
    Nothing satisfies but I'm getting close
    Closer to the prize at the end of the rope
    All night long I dream of the day
    When it comes around then it's taken away
    Leaves me with the feeling that I feel the most
    The feeling comes to life when I see your ghost

    do you say this to your mirror ?

    glass half empty glass half full drinking from the empty cup,,

    no hostility or acrimony intended,,nor snidery nor condemnation nor arrogance felt,, nor preaching

    just empathy and archtypal wisdom

    does truth matter without trust ?

  130. Original

    I removed my post because on reflection, it didn't convey what I wanted to say.

    I don't understand why you're having a hack at Bru and think you should back off as you just sound spiteful.

    Anyway here's a tune


  131. Fair enough, bru. You can obviously post whatever you want. But I think you're missing my point. Constant references to jewelry, lunches, weekends in posh hotels and your apparent lifestyle in general seem to be a large part of your posting repertoire. It just doesn't interest me or impress me. I'm not trying to say that you shouldn't do it or that you should be more serious - I don't really care. But why bother insisting to me that you can talk of serious issues, I'm quite sure that you can, you generally just don't. I do remember that a couple of years ago you used to be a staunch and eloquent defender of Catholicism on a lot of threads (and got a fair amount of abuse for it, I recall). In a way I admired that, although I didn't share a lot of your views. Whatever happened to that? Or was that bru just another persona you used.
    I don't want to be unfriendly or have a row with you, but you continually project a certain image of your own making, and it's a little disingenuous of you to complain afterwards that you're not really like that. You reap what you sow.

    Anyhow, apologies again if I've offended, but I preferred the bru who used to make serious comments to the bru who says 'Oh yes, Paris! I must go there for a weekend soon.' However, it's up to you to do what you want, just don't complain if you give a certain well-crafted impression to others, and then feel the need to deny it as if it was their fault that they misunderstood you.

  132. Bru:

    At the risk of being accused of being rude to a new member. Fuck it. Previous posts on both here & Cif settle the matter as far as I'm concerned.

  133. Bru, sadly for you I would fucking love to see my head on a platter. I really would. I am not being sarcastic or even satrecastic. It would be a sight to behold. I do not know your cif password and I certainly don't know the email that you use with cif. What I saw, which gave me the name Alexander, was the email account you used once on this site that gave your registered name as Alexander.

    And 3p4

    Nope - the lyric I was thinking of when I posted that was "done i'm done and i'm onto the next one" which sadly appears to be untrue atm


  134. Scherfig

    I don't know what your problem is but everyone posts personal stuff here - and it doesn't always interest me either - but I keep schtum about it because you know, people are different.

    As I say, just go back to even recent posts and you'll see plenty of serious issues.

    Paris was mentioned because Jay had been there. As I recall BB quite frequently mentions her time in France and we all enjoy reading about it. We'd enjoy hearing more from you about Denmark. As it is you might as well be posting from Skegness for all the difference it makes.

    My impression is not well-crafted: it is actually who I am and I'm not dishonest enough to hide it. That doesn't mean I can't tackle serious issues - as I said I was the only one commenting on the US poverty issue who had bothered to buy and read Abramsky's book a few months ago.

    I wasn't actually complaining just pointing out that you should get your facts straight.

    Frankly this is getting extremely tedious - being accused of being an airhead and a gay man/transvestite to boot by some idiot.

    If this continues you can stuff your internet chat room. Montana can always email be privately.

  135. original, were you sartrecastic in a previous life? Didn't you go to university in London (having turned down Oxford or something)?

  136. Sheff & Bru - I seem to have got embroiled in a row that I really didn't mean to over something that doesn't bother me, with someone I have no issue with (Sorry, truly sorry). I had a point in my first post, which got lost with my rather flippant aside about bru. However, I'm not sure now what to do with this as you must admit, that bru now blustering and threatening the original sin with a lawsuit and heads on platters is rather hilarious.

    Guess she should stick to shoes;.

  137. Sherfig - nope not me, not sure exactly who satrecastic was. I thought the phonebooth lot knew.

  138. Steady on, bru, I'm not the one calling you an airhead or a transvestite. I'm only saying that I personally find it tedious that you seem to feel the need to make constant references to your exciting, busy cosmopolitan life. Others may well find it interesting, just not me. That's OK. Do you want to hear about my life in Denmark in every other post I make? Or should I leaven that excitement with lurid tales of when I lived in Damascus? I really don't think folk are that interested, so I don't bother.

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  141. Scherfig
    I've always wanted to go to Damascus, so yes do tell. When's a good time of year as I don't like it too hot?

    Another tune
    our Amy

  142. OK, original, my mistake. You should stick around anyway - it can be quite good fun here sometimes when things aren't quite so fraught and we're all a bit calmer.

    btw, bru, I felt the need to respond to your last post, probably shouldn't have, but you were sufficiently patronising with your claim that 'the problem is that often I post (on serious issues) but they are threads which most of the posters here don't follow' to provoke me. I would rather have done it by Email, only I don't have your mail address, although you have mine.

  143. GP01 if you are referring to me as the "new member" then you are sadly mistaken.

  144. Princess:

    Excellent response on the Barbara Ellen thread; which was not only an insut to rape victims but to readers intelligence (promptly recommended).

  145. sheff, Damascus is great. Many great stories. There was the time I got befriended by a Syrian soldier and got a great tour of the back streets and ended up in the city's cheapest hamman. I thought we had become great friends, but I still had to pay him baksheesh. Well worth it though. And Beirut in 1992 - most of the buildings had more holes than bricks. Come to think of it, this could be my posting persona for the foreseeable future. So no more tales for now. ;o)

  146. Hey original, how goes it ? No see for a while.

    Meantime, I knocked up this for us all to mull over:

    #1 - The first rule of Untrusted is, you do not talk about Untrusted.
    #2 - The second rule of Untrusted is, you DO NOT talk about Untrusted.
    #3 - If someone says stop, goes limp, taps out, you must be sarcastic.
    #4 – Twenty seven guys to a fight.
    #5 - Fourteen fights at a time.
    #6 - No shirts, no shoes, lots of booze.
    #7 - Fights will go on as long as they have to.
    #8 - If this is your first night at Untrusted, you have to fight.

  147. The boy's name? It's only a password because I read up a lot on Alexander. Sometimes I use Campaspe for other things. They are easy to remember. I could just as well have used Fido but that wouldn't have made me a dog.

    And shoes are not my thing strangely enough, it's more jewellery.

    Scherfig - I wasn't being patronising. I have noticed that on many of the threads I've posted on that familiar names are missing. This is particularly true of threads on the US or Africa for example whereas threads on femininism tend to bring out all the posters known to me.

    It's normal that some people prefer certain subjects to others and I've worked a lot with Americans. I would really like to hear about Damascus - more than this constant carping.

    Given the level of in-fighting on these chatrooms lately the very last thing I would do is give out my email address.

  148. Knackered now so will just leave you with this if you fancy it
    'night all.

  149. Bitterweed - not bad. Weeeeell not great. I appear to have attacked bru when I didn't actually mean to. And I have no shoes and not enough booze and that's about it.

    Seriously Bru - I don't know your passwords - how could I? It came up as your name when you signed in once.

  150. alexander said...
    Billplasterer - before I go to bed.

    You mentioned "the administrator" being American (actually you asked a question) and I thought you were referring to the new Chair who is indeed American. Not difficult to understand is it? As some posters have questioned whether CiF is being tailored for the American market, I just mentioned that I very much doubt Amy Fawcett has anything to do with this.
    07 May, 2009 01:00

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  152. That was a mistake because I was fiddling with my blogger's ID and got the password the wrong way round. I take your point. My you have been around a long time. Care to enlighten us as to your (original) identity?

    FYI my real name - as Montana knows - is a girl's name and French, as is my middle name. Only my surname is English.

    For many years I used "Poppy" as a name which belonged to one of my dogs - as I say this didn't mean I went around sniffing lampposts.

  153. Fair enough bru, perhaps I was unfair. Re Email addresses - it's not here, it's the other place, and most people have put their's up.

    Anyway, I'll give you a taste of Damascus - it was illegal to buy cigarettes, so they were all smuggled in from Lebanon. We used to buy ours at a main road close to the apartment. The seller was a dwarf who stood in the middle of the traffic holding up eight cartons of various brands between his stubby fingers. Very impressive to see. It being Damascus, there were always at least 10 armed soldiers and police standing around but he was never arrested. Ain't that strange? The cars used to slow down going past him, and a carton would go in the window and notes would be passed out. Wonderful system.

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  155. Original
    Don't sweat it; seen a whole lot worse than that round here lately !

  156. Well done on the anon posting montana.
    Glad you are ok now.
    On a personal note;
    Once again I have not won the lottery but when I do I am going to ditch you lot and buy some real friends.

  157. colin, ditch the others - buy me.

  158. scherfig,
    I already have a hedgehog you spikey fucker.

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  162. Scherfig

    When a post comes up about the Middle East you should contribute. I always say - and I stand by this - that people who have had personal experience - like Usini in Iran - have more to say that a journalist or another poster who is just spouting opinions.

    Which is why I rely on anecdotal evidence a lot - it's so much more real when you see what can happen (this was particularly true on the divorce thread where I've had massive experience of other people's marriages going pear-shaped and ended up personally involved and fighting on the wife's behalf in one famous instance).

    However I do get the impression that CiF doesn't really want the expat or foreign voice otherwise they could have given ATL assignments to many like Teacup for example.

    I will have to think about the email issue - tonight is an exception. I don't often have this amount of time to spare certainly not in the winter season. In fact I'm not on here very much at the best of times, usually it's one comment a day or every other day - PB the same.

    It's not like I ever hog the place.

    Anyway I'm definitely off for the night.

  163. Right this really is the last.

    Original- I'm used to a fair amount of abuse on CiF - there have been times when I have ridden a veritable storm but I don't expect it on a chat forum.

    As I just said - it's not as though I'm on here very often at the best of times, tonight is a real exception.

    Anyway apology accepted. Other than organising a Christmas party and everyone turning up there isn't much anyone can do to prove they are who they say they are. Montana does have solid proof however. You'll just have to take my word for it.

    Nighty night.

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  165. Bru - you have no need to prove owt to me, really, I'm glad you accepted my apology, after all there is no way I can prove it's genuine is there? :-).

    No One Knows

  166. bru, the Damascus I knew is probably long gone. The world has changed. It was more or less closed to the West then, old al-Assad was still president, and his son, the current president, used to party with hookers in the big hotels in the centre of town (quite close to the Umayyad mosque) - or at least so they said, don't quote me :o)

  167. original said...
    Bru - you have no need to prove owt to me, really, I'm glad you accepted my apology, after all there is no way I can prove it's genuine is there? :-).

    see sheff,,i said this place was pretty solid,,
    original >>The URL contained a malformed video ID
    ,,message from youtube

  168. trust trust trust

    there is no way I can prove it's genuine is there?

    , I'm glad you accepted

    trust trust trust

    trust is the jug for the water of truth