13 November 2009

Daily Chat 13/11/09

Slow day in history.

King Ethelred the Unready ordered the deaths of all Danes in England in 1002.  The Denny Party landed at Alki Point on the Puget Sound in 1851 and founded the settlement that became the city of Seattle.  Great Britain defeated France in the final of the first Rugby League World Cup in 1954.

Born today:  Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894), Hermione Baddeley (1906-1986), Jean Seberg (1938-1979), Art Malik (1952), Gerard Butler (1969) and Ayaan Hirsi Ali (1969).

It is the feast day of St. John Chrysostom.  It's Tridi, 23 Brumaire CCXVIII (Garance day), if you're using the French Republican calendar.


  1. So I'm a plastic feminist am I... an airbrushed, lipsticked airhead who thinks feminism is woteva the cosmo editor says?
    You know that is utter tosh Hank... but you can fuck right off nonetheless... and I really shouldn't be needing to tell you that being a woman and liking a lip gloss does not an airhead make... sheesh... you're starting to sound like La Bindel there!

  2. Ach Kiz Hank was maybe paying you a compliment, he could have meant this usage of the adjective -

    'Having the qualities of sculpture; well-formed: "the astonishing plastic beauty of the chorus girls" (Frank Harris)'

    Loved your whadday post about class on Cif!

    Labour being very gracious in victory, heard Jim Murphy praising the Tory and SNP candidates this morning (graciousness is not a usual quality in Scottish labour).

    The Tory was widley praised - if her party has any sense they'll put her and their Glasgow East candidate up for winnable seats at the election.

  3. From Hank yesterday
    On the plus side though, we have loads of independent, educated women. Spirited women, feminists all, who believe in equality, as long as that equality is all about their political rights and says nothing about their social commitments.
    And we also have loads of spirited men and women who engage with feminism as a movement for parity, rather than female supremacy. Who seek to define what their social commitments should be in those terms, rather than based solely on what went before.

    I'm no fan of the 'rad-fem' agenda (viz the Bidisha / volcano comment moderation farrago that led me to pitch up here in the first place) but I am a feminist. So I try to identify what are actually feminist issues (issues that affect women specifically, by virtue of them being women, rather than just 'issues that affect women' - where the effect on men also needs to be considered), and to address these without 'gender separatism' or downright 'hating'.

    As an example, some male posters have complained that 'feminism' can be seen as dismissing male hetero sexuality as inherently wrong - and some 'rad' posters castigate women for wanting to wear make-up, heels, pretty clothes etc. And the 'ogling' and 'topless' threads really went for both of those fairly pointless, humourless tropes in a big way. Both were very good threads, I think, in that people were being honest about basic human desires (like looking at a pretty girl, cute guy, wearing lippy) which really aren't anything to do with 'politics', in my view. And they were bloody funny. And Kiz rocked on both of them.

    There's a lot of shit that affects all of us. And a lot that affects some of us. And a lot that's just fluff and not part of any 'coninuum' or whatever the damn word is. And I think we need to know how to distinguish between them, and if the ATL has got it wrong, say so.

    Need more coffee...

  4. Oh dear, have gone off a bit on the Izza thread.

    heh heh

  5. Kiz

    I don't read the UT of a night any more - too many drunks on it and besides I was getting my head around that text message I received from Osama Bin Laden's crazier brother which said that if I didn't worship the Prophet (peace be to him) I'd get my head smashed in.

    Seems like I've been surrounded by a bunch of nutters for a few weeks now. I should have read my horoscope for the month. I'm sure it would have said something intriguing.

    Kiz altogether now - to all you (male) drunks and druggies on here who become totally incomprensible at times.


    I didn't get to swanning around with the top brass in Brussels by listening to the likes of you. So sod off. Clear enough? Feminist enough?

    In any case, in real life - and I have one unlike some people - I'm rather popular. Funny old world isn't it?

    And Montana - I'm really sorry for your plight, believe me but I do think you could have done a bit more to stop the vicious insults some of us have been subjected to here.

    Particularly under the circumstances. I haven't wanted to mention it but your level of gratitude has been appalling. Loyalty and friendship are a two-way street. I don't expect grovelling but a little support wouldn't have gone amiss.

    I had been about to do the same as at the beginning of September but frankly I'm feeling too brassed off to bother. Though I do wish you well out of your present crisis.

  6. I have been staying out of the mudslinging (part cowardice, part not really knowing WTF was going on) but - Bru, that's not on. This isn't 'Montana's blog' where she sets the agenda - it's a community resource that she is good enough to set up for us. She did address the last spat on UT2, very thoughtfully, but she isn't 'mother' here - we are all responsible for our own statements.

    A military mate of mine once told me that he works on the basis of the 'live-fire protocol' - "when preparing to fire, make sure you're aiming at the target".

  7. Re: question about ATL on the other thread I quote -
    "a lot of people in threads have been recommending you to write above the line (especially about the relations between class, feminism and age..."

    So the subject was left fairly open they accepted my LP piece so seem to be relatively flexible.

    Second piece resulted from a comment I made about father's rights.

    You are technically employed as a free lance so I guess submitting pieces would be OK? They can only say no after all!

  8. I'll repeat my last comment from yesterday's thread.

    The BNP lost their deposit last night.

    A pretty sane city in a crisis if you ask me.

  9. Ay, bitterweed, saw that and had a little chuckle.

  10. Annetan - thanks for the info, helps us all understand how the game is played. Hope the move is all done and dusted soon.

    Hermione picked up the ball and ran with it last night.She has carried the call for Montana to be invited ATL onto the latest WDYWTT. we should all add our recommends to her post

    PB - you have at least one wise mate!

  11. Bitterweed,

    they did indeed, very satisfying from that aspect.

    Something I've brought up on the reaction to the results thread is the absolute refusal of any of the parties to acknowledge the elephant in the room- the absolutely appalling turnout: 33%

    Bearing in mind mid term elections have a lower turnout, the fact only one third of the electorate bothered to turn out sends the loudest message that none of the parties will listen to:

    Nobody represents us.

    FPTP exists to switch between elite and elite ensuring there will be no change, encouraging apathy and cynicism and in turn further corroding participation in the Democratic process.

    2010 will see one elite replace another in a wave of doleful apathy, there will be no change to the Democratic process, there will be no change to MP's expenses, the people will be unrepresented and the top 2% of society will continue to carve the wealth in an orgy of mutual politico-business masturbation.

  12. deano - ay, which is fortunate as most of them are just hopeless (heh heh). Not really. Had a very good conversation last night about the fibonacci sequence in nature (petals, seed arrangements, etc). the natural world is indeed a source of wonder...

    ...posed the hippu.

  13. deano:

    "we should all add our recommends to her post"


    Your grace:

    I've been saying this ever since I saw it at the student elections at undergrad:

    We need a RON box on the ballot slip

    (Re Open Nominations)

  14. Philippa,

    Did you get on to fractals? I love fractals!

  15. Probably the main problem for the BNP in Scotland is the patriot Union Jack thing which alienates the RCs - thus the bulk of the dispossesed in Glasgow, especially areas with large Catholic populations such as Springburn, won't look at them (4th in such as seat is actually quite impressive; and the early edns of the Scottish papers were declaring they had beaten the Tories, who had a very fine candidate).

    The BNP are vigorously rebranding themselves in Scotland with the saltire, but as the saltire is not universally welcome at Celtic Park - Celtic fans have been known to get aggressive at fellow fans who wave saltires rather than Irish flags - it's a tactic with limited appeal.

    Incidentaly, I can remember when very few Catholics would vote for the SNP - several of their revered past leaders made a point of being anti-Catholic, indeed in some cases anti-Irish, so things do change for the better as well as the worse.

    The turnout was really bad - apathy rules. And look at Galloway muttering 'Judean Liberation Front' in that excellent Harris Guardian video clip, as Harris puts the splitter point to Sheridan - never seen GG so deflated. Sheridan's snarl at Harris is also worth noting - as is the fact that he was beaten by the BNP.

    Am off back up there just now to get a pair of troosers at Tisos; a different world from the Springburn shopping centre further up the road.

  16. PB - did you ever get that Grebe video from the BBC to play??

  17. Dotterel,

    could you imagine if 'none of the above' was added to a ballot paper? The entire edifice would collapse.

    FPTP is a fig leaf covering the naked torso of Kleptocracy.

  18. Duke - I was just thinking NOA as a scenario when I read your post.

    I then moved on to "anybody but the incumbent" and "anybody but that twat [write name here]"

  19. Hmm, negative votes: you can either vote "for" someone or "against" someone else, although I fear elections could end up being "won" in a QI fashion (party with the highest negative score wins)

  20. Dot - yes, somebody mentioned fractals, but I'd had a fair amount to drink by that point, so just left the science types to it! One mate mentioned a physicist - Richard Fray? Fry? - who, when challenged by a YETI-type that when he looked at a flower, he couldn't see it's beauty, responded that he did - he saw the beauty in it, the beauty behind it, and was filled with awe by how it came to pass. I thought that rather wonderful myself.

    deano - no grebes, unfortunately, but did amuse myself after that chat by finding nature clips on youtube. there was a fabulous baby penguin one (I'm a sucker for fluffy) - will try to find that later...

  21. "The key players, the plastic feminists, ie bru and kiz, have no idea of the debt they owe to the working class or organised labour."

    Hank, come on, can we please try and cut down on this stuff, i know its not all you and im not blameless myself, but as a group if we want a row with someone here can we take it to CiF?

    There are some good, interesting, troll free debates here and we should try to protect that. Its goood to row, but time and place, surely.

    Kiz also is often pretty scathing of the radfems herself, whilst we're on the subject (not that i ever read the fem threads, obviously...)

    Duke -

    "FPTP is a fig leaf covering the naked torso of Kleptocracy."

    Like it. In terms of a single change, nothing would fix this country half as well as PR, not a constitution, not a republic, bill of rights, reform of whips, anything. And Labour chopped it for short term personal gain, putting it out of reach probably for another decade at least. There arent the words for the contempt...

  22. have checked back on the fractals thing - apparently paisley is involved? and chaos theory - so I asked how a pattern could arise from chaos. apparently that's complicated (chuckle)...

  23. Oh shit, here goes....

    Edwin, I think your heart is bang in the right place, but I suspect that we all know that Hank was not paying Kiz a compliment. Its quite apparent that he is pursuing a bitter agenda which serves no purpose that I can see apart from creating division and causing people to avoid posting in case they incur the self-righteous wrath of someone who may or may not be pissed up to the eyeballs. I've no wish to upset Hank, I don't know what triggers his anger and I don't really want to become one of the targets, but these attacks are personal abuse and I don't think that they reflect the generosity of spirit which is displayed to Hank on this site.

    Bru, I think you have been particularly singled out and you have every reason to feel hurt and angry, but I am with PhilippaB. To be honest, a number of us who have kept our heads down could, debatably, have spoken up in your support, hence this post.

    I doubt your words will have any effect Jay, but they are wise indeed....

  24. PB - the wiki entry on fractals is interesting:

    Wiki Fractals

    there are some great examples of 'live' fractals down the page.

    Evidently you can get software that generates fractals. Seem to be quite a few fractal artist's and their studios out there too.

  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

  26. I especially liked:

    "Photograph of a romanesco broccoli, showing a naturally occurring fractal"

    Never quite saw a broccoli as a thing of such beauty before.

  27. Jay,

    you're right about Labour and short term gain. The particular contempt I hold for that sorry bunch holds no bounds.

    At least you know where you are with the Tories(normally down the job centre after having your employment terminated) but 1997 Labour styling themselves as 'social democrat champions': Nauseating.


    having 'anybody but that twat' would be great. It would show the contempt we have for our 'representatives' to be as deep as the contempt they have for us.

  28. PB/Deano

    Re: live fractals:

    I did a project once on fractals in bird movements (small scale movements to find individual food items being similar to and part of larger scale movements to find feeding areas).

  29. Hank and Bru - I think you're both bang out of order. Bru, as Vari said, you have been singled out but responding with a personal attack on Montana is not on.

  30. Vari - good to see you back. You have been missed.

    Folk should always come and speak their minds, that makes this UT place all the better. I think it was Jay who recently said if nobody comments there is nothing to read and nothing to think about.

    A teflon rainhat is, as ever, a useful accessory here - but it is optional.

  31. The very notion of gratitude is something I find really really distasteful. Putting gratitude into a balance sheet is plain silly.

  32. Dot - bird movement? seeing flocks of birds flying fascinates me - all those individual birds within a group movement, like they've got a common brain or something (w apologies to any scientists present - I just can't think of how else to put it), swooping, banking, wheeling, turning - does anybody else watching something like that get the urge to make 'swooshing' noises along with it?

    And bees dance. Bees are brilliant.


    Apparently, you do, bru, somewhat obsessively. Constantly posting here that you don't read this blog any more and ranting about 'men' and drunks is boring. I don't think many people care what you think. Here's a suggestion - find a more suitable blog where you can try and impress other women and you can all 'diss teh menz' together. You'll be much happier, I'm sure.

    btw, your comment on Montana that her 'level of gratitude has been appalling' was pathetic and offensive. Montana owes you nothing - none of us do. I suspect this blog willl continue quite happily without your input, so instead of saying for the 50th time that you no longer wish to be part of it, why not just stop reading/posting?

    As for the insults that do actually alienate people, I'm with Jay - I would suggest that everyone thinks twice before posting. There have been some good discussions here, and I'm sure that that will continue.

    PS deano, it was me who pointed out that if nobody comments, there is nothing to read, so imho, for better or for worse, the views of the actual contributors should take precedence over the views of those who do not contribute, but just regard this site as free entertainment. Tough, but that's life.

  34. PB/Dot- I am endlessly pleased when "V" formations of migrating birds pass over.

    I love the constant noise of the quacks and the answering quack. It can be a very loud noise even when they are flying quite high. I always join in with my own quacks

    I also enjoy watching the swooping, banking, wheeling, turning of very large flocks of starlings at dusk. They have really large congregations in some places and the film of them is a work of delight

  35. Scherf - yes it was you in an exchange with Vari if I now remember it correctly! Fair and sensible comment I thought.

  36. deano - 'V'-formations do seem more understandable to me - leader-bird, passing over command when tired, a bit like competitive cycling (!) - its the way that flocks of them with no obvious 'leader' can move about like that without crashing into each other that makes me wonder how they do it.

  37. deano, did you get your book from amazon yet?

  38. PB/Deano,

    I was out watching a largish flock of starlings once with a fellow ecologist for whom English is a second language, she works on fish (in English), so she said

    "look, the birds are shoaling"

    She knew it wasn't the right word, and asked me what was, but with their movement at that time, I actually think it was more appropriate than "flocking"........

  39. Well I don't think anyone's views should take precedence, I don't think a hierarchy of contributors is a very constructive idea at all. And I can honestly say that there isn't much entertaining about personal insults and vindictive behaviour. I'm not including you in this Scherfig, unless I have missed something - which is very possible as having a family and a job often means that I can't and indeed wouldn't want to enter into petty insult slinging. But I think that it should be acknowledged that maybe certain behaviour causes people to cease posting. Swifty, for instance.

    Anyhow, I don't come here to argue or piss people off, I visit because there is often lively and interesting debate. Whether it be about Lord of the Rings or the disturbing turn out in a byelection.

  40. Dot - yes! the same sort of fluid collective movement.

    will do some investigation later - french lesson calls. bleah.

  41. 13thDukeofWybourne, Edwin, around ten o'clock, very informative posts both. Thanks. Especially interested to hear about BNP and Scotts national-religions "identities".

  42. Vari, we more or less agree. 'I visit because there is often lively and interesting debate' is fine, but if you and 20 others feel the same and don't ever post, then you'll visit some day and there will be no debate at all, interesting or otherwise.

    (Re Swifty, he hasn't posted on Cif either for a long time, so either the behaviour or Cif is as bad as here, or there's another reason. I would, of course, like to see him back here.)

  43. Diplomatic row brewing between France and Ireland over football match? Little Sarkozy not pleased, according to these leaked letters. :0)


  44. That is entirely fair enough Scherfig, and I take it on board, I don't want to labour the point, so this will hopefully be the last from me on the subject, but I have often visited recently with the express intention of posting, seen what is happening and why, and retreated. If people who visit and want to engage are worried that by expressing an opinion they might be vulnerable to personal abuse, they won't comment and yes, the site will be poorer for it.

    I don't live in some sort of bubble where everyone is lovely to each other all the time, differences of opinion are a fact of life and argument and debate is healthy, but what appears to be spitefully motivated attacks on individuals is wrong, and its becoming part of the culture around here, which is a great shame.

    I think we will see Swifty back on CiF like a shot if Mr S can commission something from BiBuBiBu or Shapiro. But that would also completely fuck up my plans to get any work done this pm....

  45. Nice one, scherf - reminds me of this one, which is a bit dated now but very funny!

  46. OK - I just want to clarify. I know Montana is in a bad place and I don't want to kick someone when they are down but whenever she needed support she would email me privately. I was unfailing in that support - I always am when someone needs help.

    All it took was for Montana to speak out just once or twice - nothing more. Had the roles been reversed, I would have annihilated MF and everyone knows it. Because I'm no coward and neither is Kiz. Neither she nor I will bow down to the bullies.

    I'm not hurt - just aware that I've been taken for a ride again. Used for what I can give then thrown to the scumbags.

    Actually in posting today I was coming to Kiz's defence. It took me months to get to the point as far as I was concerned, months when Montana suddenly forgot my email address or lost her voice before her hero-worship of Hank.

    It's not alright - it's a disgrace.

    And Hank - I do hope your son, whom you sent to be educated in the super middle-class Austrian resort of Innsbruck, learns to take it when everyone calls him a middle-class prat living off Daddy.

    Because what goes around comes around.

  47. Philippa,

    I went to a fascinating talk once where the speaker was presenting his findings on how a flock of birds "decides" to take flight to escape a predator: basically as an individual (bird) you obviously want to escape predators, either if you or one of your flock-mates spot one, but you don't want to give up feeding and panic every time the bird next to you decides to fly away for another reason. What this guy found was that there was a mathematical formula for how many other birds a bird sees fly away before it decides to go, if it hasn't seen the predator itself. (depending on various other factors like how far away the nearest tree for cover is etc.)

    I must look to see if similar work has been done on flocking (shoaling!) behaviour once airborne (bet it has!)

    Incidentally the V formation is mostly about wind resistance, rather than "leading the way"

    Everyone else:

    BTW I'm doing as I would be done by and sticking to what interests me. I agree we don't need the back biting, name calling etc. As has been said though the best way to deal with it is ignore it and initiate/engage with something that interests you instead (or indeed, don't bother with the site at all).

  48. Bru - if that's how you felt, why not e-mail her privately instead of posting on a public board?

    For the record, I do not support the attacks on Kiz, you or anyone else (and have said so) but Montana had nothing to do with them.

  49. PB/Dot Yea 'fluid collective movement' describes it well _ I'm thinking herrings and especially sardines trying to avoid dolphins and other predators.

    Vari - I'm not into a hierarchy of posters but if folk don't post I/we can't know what they are thinking.

    Lots of folk here hope that Swifty will rejoin us and have said as much recently.

    Equally I hope that Stoaty will be back soon. I don't know why he's not around - it could be work or something else.

    It was good to see Andy back (last weekend) even if only occasionally these days. At least when he felt that 'he needed not to be here' he said why and thus there was never any question/confusion of him not being welcome whenever he wanted to come back.

    Truth is anyone is welcome here as I understand it. Gets a bit hot, sweaty and uncomfortable at times but that's what happens when things are cooking.

    I think the best observation I read on the 'occasional difficulties' was to the effect that we would all do well to recall that as well as a person throwing down an insult it needs someone to pick it up to give the insult effect. Otherwise it really is just pissing in the wind or wailing at the moon.

    I think that was an observation from several months ago by our occasional visitor from Canada 3P4 but I wouldn't swear to it at this distance.

    BW - I too found the Duke/Edwin comments interesting

    Dog walking and other things call.

  50. Bru

    If you.. "don't want to kick someone when they are down" then quite simply dear lady don't do it.

  51. Good to see you back, Vari, good points.

    Bear in mind, Bru, Montana does to a degree have to keep a certain level of neutrality because although she shouldnt have to monitor this place and sort out squabbles, sadly she does have to.

    Stoaty, fencewalker, Swifty, would be good to get them back, and others. But they probably wont bother if it means getting involved in ridiculous rows all the time. We never used to row when this site started, it can be done.

  52. deano, you misunderstand a basic fact. Bru's posts are never about anyone else - other people really don't matter to her at all. All Bru's posts are only ever about her. She just needs a forum to talk about herself constantly, and it bores the arse off me.

  53. Very interesting post, btw, Dot. On birds. The V thing has always intrigued me.

    I also like the penguin trick where they line up behind each other facing the wind, then take it in turns to stand at the front and brave the wind to shield the others.

  54. Scherf "deano, did you get your book from amazon yet"

    Oh thanks for a reminder. Most of my recent Amazon orders have now been delivered - but now I remember I had an email about the book you recommended to say my credit card had been refused.

    Some cock up I think I'll go sort it now.

    By the way Duke I had a note to say that film about the miners you drew attention is now shipped!

  55. Jay - love your penguin analogy :)

  56. Ugh, There's some horror comments on the Glasgow North East boards-

    -bunch of Rab C Nesbitts

    - Glasgow Shitehouse

    I hope these charming people are the first to feel the full force of fiscal discipline under the next Conservative Government...

    amongst others.

    Fact of the matter is, is that a socio-economically deprived community which has a high asylum seeker/refugee community, the kind of area we are told are intolerant, bigoted and ignorant and are most likely to vote fascist told the BNP to fuck off .

    And all these cretins who comment the phrases above can see is 'welfare benefit junkies'.

    I know it shouldn't but these comments make me sick.

  57. Jay - I love the Emperor penguins down at Antarctica, did you know that it's the males who are doing the dance against the wind and that they are carrying the incubating eggs in a pouch by their feet.

    They dance through the long 24 hours of darkness - the females have fucked off and are living it up elsewhere.

  58. Hi deano,

    Mine's has shipped as well! I'm really looking forward to seeing it. You probably have seen this, but in case you havent't or anyone else who's interested hasn't seen it

    Ken Loach's Which side are you on?

    Loach was so disgusted by the media's treatment of the miners he made this documentary which ITV refused to show after 'outside pressure.'

    It's heartbreaking to watch but also fills your heart and soul.

  59. deano
    They dance through the long 24 hours of darkness - the females have fucked off and are living it up elsewhere.

    Clever lady penguins ..

  60. Too fucking true MsChin.

    The 'dance' is, in slow motion, a beautiful illustration of how co-operation in a collective carries the day.

    What is really happening is a gigantic circle of Emperor penguins is slowly revolving so that exposure/shelter to/from the wind edge is constantly changing.

    But then also penguins slowly move in and out from the centre warmest part of the circle as they each change place with one another. It's a class act.

  61. And all these cretins who comment the phrases above can see is 'welfare benefit junkies'.

    Well it's true isn't it? And people voting labour because their grandfather voted labour? that has no place in a democracy. It makes the entire system redundant.

  62. I can safely say that one of the most amazing days of my life (birth of kids, wedding, family stuff etc blah blah) was penguin related and was spent at Simons Town in South Africa. If you ever get the chance to go I recommend seizing it, I would love to go back.

  63. deano
    A class act indeed. Male birds are wonderful parents.

    Yep, it's true that all these cretins .. can see is 'welfare benefit junkies', but that doesn't mean the rest of us do.

  64. Yup, penguins rock, hoping to get paid to study them one day!

    Do tell Vari? One of my favourite penguin experiences was swimming with the most northerly (wild) ones in Galapagos.

  65. And deano, if I remember rightly, don't the men penguins also go hungry until their females partners return?

  66. My favourite joke so far on the Libby Brooks thread:

    Q. How many feminists does it take to change a lightbulb?

    A. That's not funny!

  67. Pikey!

    how you doing you old beardy git? ;)

    What did you do at Simons Town, Vari? Is it a penguin place? And are you familiar with young panda bear cubs? Youtube them, they are like little teddy bears, they are extremely sweet, they even beat puppies and kittens in that department.

  68. MsChin,

    Yup, the men go hungry until the women come back from fishing. It's the males that stay because the females spent too much energy producing the egg and so don't have the reserves to stay.

  69. Frank

    "Well it's true isn't it? "

    No it's not Frank.

    What some of us think here, is what you also know to be true, namely that our problems in life are more to do with tax avoiding/evading scumbags and their apologists.

    Such twot's have a disturbingly negative impact on the quality of our lives. They can have little complaint if they are introduced to the rope.

  70. @Kizbot - "you can fuck right off..."

    Given that you called me a twisted fucker the other day, the above sentiment is wholly superfluous.

    @Bru - as a prosecution lawyer, you'd make a great defence barrister. Every comment you make just adds to the general picture I have of you as a narcissistic, self-aggrandising hypocrite. Why do you feel the need to mention on here that Montana has approached you, privately, for help and support in the past?


    And to those of you rushing to her defence, or singling me out for criticism, perhaps you missed her attack on me over on UT2 or the rubbish she was spouting about MF the other day.

    As for the idea that you would have annihilated him, Bru, you're deluded.

    @Vari - I think you need a bit of perspective. There are occasional spats on here but they're usually late night slanging matches and, as you tend to post during the day, I find it difficult to believe that you're deterred from doing so by me or others. If you are, then I shall do my best to avoid getting involved in any more vendetti.

    As Bru is clearly not going to apologise to MF, perhaps the best thing would be if the chief protagonists who are harbouring grudges against each other could simply ignore each other from now on. I promise not to interact with or comment on Bru and Kiz if they'll do the same.

    Hiya Frank, the swine flu didn't get you then? Can't rely on anything these days (-;

  71. I'm beardy and gittish - it's what I am.

  72. Starlings roosting -


    Bill Oddie calls it the most glorious sight in nature

  73. our problems in life are more to do with tax avoiding/evading scumbags and their apologists

    Tax avoidances costs a couple of hundred billion quid a year?

    Without the costs of the welfare state we'd live like kings in this country.

  74. I didn't do anything at Simons Town other than sit on the rocks surrounded by penguins just watching them. Its sort of surreal when you're only exposure to something is on the tv or pictures, to be surronded by these amazing creatures going about their business. I hope that dosn't sound too dippy, but it was just an amazing experience. Its probably easier to understand the zen-ness of it for me if you know that I live in the midlands.

    Perhaps I am overly sensitive Hank, but quite often the 'spats' spill over into the following day, and it sets a bit of a tone. Also, I do visit at night when I get the chance, and I have definitely been deterred by not wanting to inadvertently say something which might be considered incendiary.

    Anyway, I've had my say on the subject and I don't want to turn into some tubthumper.

    Penguins. They're the way forward....

  75. Hank - the best thing would be if the chief protagonists who are harbouring grudges against each other could simply ignore each other from now on.

    An excellent idea!

    Frank - don't be daft - without the welfare state a select few would live like kings and the rest of us would be starving. Like now, only more so.

  76. Yea nothing like roast/baked/stewed pensioner it's just the diet that kings go for .

    Glad you survived the flu Frank

  77. Just remembered Jay, after sitting on the rocks communing with nature I went and got pissed on excellent cheap wine and if memory serves, played some pool.

    As I said, a very, very good day.

  78. Vari

    "Penguins. They're the way forward...."

    Most definitely, where's Simon's town in relation to Cape Town? I'm off there next year and thinking Simon's town needs a visit!

  79. "Frank - don't be daft - without the welfare state a select few would live like kings and the rest of us would be starving."

    Social order would disintegrate rapidly, people wont sit idly by homeless and starving whilst a handful lord it up. And what would happen to the economy? Millions of economic units would be inactive. Crime would go through the roof. Unless you had enough money to pay for a gated castle and private security, you'd eventually be screwed anyway.

    But even at the most basic level, Frank, isnt it better to pay a few pence more on your quid so that millions have a home and food? Would you really keep that money and scrap all benefits if you had the chance? I'm not sure you would, however angry it makes you.

    Vari - you sit in the enclosure with them? Quite tempting. Though South Africa isnt top of my to do list, i must say. Penguins are clearly well organised socially though, they'd have none of these squabbles...

    Hank, thats a simple but very good idea. If people dont like certain posters, just ignore them, dont even read their posts. Or, go over to the waddya thread and unload - as long as no one drags the mess back here.

    As an aside, must be weird for MOntana when rows break out as she is so many hours behind, when she gets up she just gets to admire the wreckage...

  80. That sounds a very good day, Vari, i grant you. A bit of booze and pool never goes amiss... though a dispute over a game did lead to locals threatening to shoot me and a friend in Thailand, not ideal. Hopefully Gogarty has bumped into them...

  81. "Penguins. They're the way forward"

    So thought the polar bear when some little swine threw a pnguin into its enclsorue. . .

    . . .but it couldn't get the wrapper off.

    Bru I do think your comment re Montana was mean. Like others I keep adrift when you and Hank and Kiz are throwing plates about in the kitchen, and well, it's only sensible to avoid the Wild Wood at night.

    But that comment to Montana was wrong.

  82. "...it's only sensible to avoid the Wild Wood at night..."

    Oh c'mon, edwin, it's not that bad. Maybe us reprobates just need your civilising influence to keep us in check (-;

    Terrible penguin joke btw.

  83. A Save the Egg game - your chance to play penguin

    Save the egg

  84. Gotta disagree with you re welfare state Frank. I got my first proper pair of shoes from the Earl Haig Fund in 1952 - the rancid old bitch who handled the handover called my mother a 'charity case'. My dad was was one of 18 who got at St Valery, was wounded in North Africa, Italy and finally crippled in Greece - my mum was a nurse who saved lievs 0- charity cases indeed.

    This poem of WWI says it for the soldiers and for me

    “Will They Forget?
    I have given all for England –
    what is she doing for me?
    Wounded and worn and broken – what
    is it going to be?
    Are my children to starve and go rag-
    ged, my wife worn out and made
    Or shall I look up, with my head
    thrown back,
    As we did when we charged like mad?

    Why these doubts, why these fears of
    my country?
    We are all of the bulldog breed,
    From our King on his throne to the
    latest recruit, the millionaire
    down to the threadbare suit.
    All – all won’t forget when we ham-
    mered them so,
    When we stood between them and the
    kultur’d foe.
    And fought, bled, and died for old

    Anonymous (unsigned and not attributed)

    Published in “The Whitby [Ontario, Canada] Gazette & Chronicle” Volume 54, Nr. 48, Thursday, May 31, 1917, page 3

  85. Booze and pool - exactly what I shall be doing in under 2 hours!

  86. Edwin, there was some interesting and moving stuff on 5Live the other day with a phone-in on war-time experiences. Someone mentioned WW1 soldiers who had been gassed or had lost their legs, coming home from the trenches and selling matches on the streets. A land fit for heroes, eh? Fuckin' 'charity cases' the lot of them.

  87. scherfig

    Others were put into asylums, because of shellshock & psychological distress. I mentioned the other day that my grandparents lived in a cellar kitchen after the Great War. After my grandma was widowed, she remarried & moved to a tiny terrace house. My (second) grandad had work so they were better off than most. My late aunt said that being sent with a jug of soup to neighbours down the road, all sick with TB & who had nothing but one room with a sink and a shared bed, was something never to be forgotten and forged her political beliefs. No money for fuel or food, no medical treatment.

    A land fit for heroes.

  88. Great starling film Edwin - flocks on that scale really are a sight worth travelling to see.

    I seem to recall they have very big gatherings over the marshes in Somerset too.

  89. " I would have annihilated MF and everyone knows it. Because I'm no coward and neither is Kiz. Neither she nor I will bow down to the bullies."

    That's it then? Your response..."I would have annihilated MF.."...dream on you fantasist loon.

    You sad deluded cow. Go on then sweet thing..let's have a slanging match..or just explain what you were up to the other night...responding to non existent posts and casting fuckin outrageous accusations about. You're mental "and everyone knows it"...worse still, if you're not being mental...you're fuckin thick anyway...and boring..every time I read one of your posts, I start to hear Coldplay in my head you anodyne, drivelling sham.

    Btw...still waiting for any scrap of justification for anything you said. Please respond this time. Can't wait to hear what you've got to say. Catch you later...off to the opera for a few pints.

  90. ... on a lighter note, is Bitterweed about?

    the UT has a fine tradition for youtubing music clips, i recently found a brilliant little program that makes a youtube vid into an MP3 for ipods, so any live performances whatever you can get on your ipod, genius. I cant remember the program, but will dig it out, very easy to use too, drag and drop jobby...

  91. JayReilly
    Where where where ?????!!!!

    (Very much related - I have a cunning plan for all regulars here... involves a little bit of work though...)

    (Jay, btw, got fucked around by a promoter two weeks ago - was within an hour of doing a couple of support gigs with Walter Trout... gutted )

  92. In other news, out of respect to common deceny earlier today, Coldplay killed themselves.

  93. Coldplay killed themselves! How could anyone tell?

  94. scherfig
    Very interesting philopsophical question ...

    Here's another one

    If a man says something in a forest, and no woman is there to hear him, is he still wrong ?

  95. BW

    Coldplay? Is it something those penguins do on the ice?

  96. Old Inuit saying - don't eat the yellow snow. You'll regret it.

  97. I'll find it for you, BW, its only 10meg so quick download, works perfect, i absolutely love it, you copy paste the youtube link and it gets to work, churns out an MP3 at a folder of your choosing. Its a pretty epic discovery.

  98. scherfig

    Question for the twitchers here:

    If those emperor penguins are about 4' tall, how big are their eggs?

  99. Jay

    It is if you're one of the bourgois elite & have an ipod :-)

    I just use Audacity, mainly 'cos the offspring installed it on the PC. Does the gizmo you've found solve that variable volume problem, where the youtube recording either blows your speakers or you can't hear it?

  100. "how big are their eggs"
    To fit their egg cups like everyone else stupid.

    I'll get me coat...

  101. You can adjust volume on ipod, MsChin, its just a bit of a pain. I couldnt live without the ipod, essential device for any travelling, walking, pissing off the GF by announcing i'm bored of her conversation and putting the headphones in...

    It is somewhat bourgeois, granted, luckily i ordered a special fairtrade one from the Graun crafted by Ugandan camel farmers and decorated by Bangladeshi artisans using recycled tools and materials. It came with the fair trade salad bowl the Graun advertised for that climate camp article (that still cracks me up, i wrote to privat eye but they didnt bite...)

    Though the recent stonehenge article should have made Pseuds corner in its entirety, classic.

  102. Hi folks!

    Haven't said much about the current spat mainly because:
    1)couldn't think of anything constructive to say
    2)didn't have the energy

    But here goes -
    First of all I like Opera and don't propose to apologise for my tastes. I can't often afford to see it live but there are recordings...

    I also like shoes handbags clothes and jewelry cosmetics and perfume. Again have to spend carefully most of the working class women I know are the same.

    I don't think it makes me an airhead.

    I don't think its appropriate to attack people for liking these things. However it is appropriate to disagree with people, how you do it depends on your attitude to the person I suppose. I happen to think all people are worth engaging with and so try not to alienate. But then my aim is to change their views not piss them off. Out and out fascists and trolls are exceptions to this rule.

    I find most people's drunken posts amusing but I am also aware that sometimes what people say or type when pissed is best ignored especially if it it gets angry.

    As to Montana I think she has enough to deal with at the moment without people having a go and anyway If I support someone when I think they are right I don't expect them to support me if they think I'm wrong. Also we should also remember that some of us don't read every post (no time!)

    I am also aware its Friday and Friday 13th at that! Not that I am superstitious mind ;-)

    @ Jay some good posts there! and re question from a previous thread - have found a new place really nice modern flat all wood laminate floors and plain walls. Just praying nothing stops me from loosing it!

    Have a good evening peeps and be nice!

  103. "Though the recent stonehenge article should have made Pseuds corner in its entirety, classic."

    That guy was off his tits!

  104. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2009/oct/08/stonehenge-bluestone-discovery


    Look at his hat, it was just perfect, just so Guardian...

    Good work on the house front Annetan, sounds a nice place, hope all goes smoothly for you.

  105. Dot - interesting on the birds 'flight' programming - sometimes you see a bunch of them sitting on a wire, and then they all take off in order, like synchronised swimmers. But then sometimes one would be left sitting, looking around, wondering where everyone had gone. Presumably not that good at maths. But it does explain why suddenly a whole group will wing it for no apparent reason...

    anybody else nervous about bitterweed's 'cunning plan' for us?

  106. PhilippaB

    Nervous about BWs plan ..
    If it involves techy stuff, then yes!

  107. That guy was great!

    Ideas about what Stonehenge means have abounded, from the coolly scientific to those of howling lunacy.

    He didn't say where he thought his own ideas lay on that spectrum, but I suppose we can all judge for ourselves. I'm curiously drawn to the 'dancing and feasting' aspect of it all. That, and the 'honouring of diversity' - a helluva trick in 3000BC!

  108. Well said, anne, the Voice of Reason. Hope you'll be happy in the new place.

  109. thauma - good work on the NT thread, there, dropped me sandwich I was laughing so hard...

  110. Great - the weekend beckons...

    Well said, anne, the Voice of Reason. Hope you'll be happy in the new place.

    I'll second that Hank. Although hurling abuse can be cathartic - maybe we should have an 'abuse throwing' corner on the UT and leave it there.

    Bru - it would be really good if you didn't just come here to complain but contributed to the general conversation - we're not all just waiting to jump on you and I think you were out of order having a go at Montana - she really does need a break at the moment.

    MsC - I remember seeing disabled ex-servicemen selling matches etc on street corners when I was a child. Looking back I can see how incredibly sad it was - land fit for heroes indeed! They're still having to fight for decent support even now....you'd think if governments are sending our young people to war they'd make sure the ones that come back physically and mentally wrecked would be a priority for care - seems not though.

    I also remember how Thatchers government treated the wounded when they came back from the Falklands - no bands on the quay and triumphant welcome for them - they were snuck in at the dead of night - words fail me, they really do. Of the many things I'll never forgive the old bitch for thats at the top of the list.

    Think I'll just trundle over to cif and see whats going on.

  111. http://download.cnet.com/Free-YouTube-to-MP3-Converter/3000-2194_4-10665553.html

    for anyone wanting to make mp3s from youtube vids, thats the program.

  112. Jay
    this has got to be worth some kind of award !

    (Agreed about the abuse everyone. Fuck the abuse.)

  113. *** PhilippaB

    Hope you're around - the piece on disability & sexuality that you aked for has gone up on CiF.

  114. Oh come off it, she deserves all the abuse she gets. I'm not having it from anyone that I don't owe her a bloody shedload. She came on here, lied, made outrageous accusations, invented comments by me supposedly addressing her, 'reponded' to them...and when asked to explain this deviant behaviour informs everyone instead that she would happily annihilate me but has desisted out of consideration for Montana.

    Not sure why she should feel this way...I'm quite happy for the 'annihilation' to take place any time...can't wait, in fact. Surely I deserve it.

    So nutjob..

    Maybe you just don't want to sink to 'my level' or sully the good name of the site with your blistering knockdown attack...although these finer feelings didn't prevent you from lying and slandering me all over the UT...so why the hesitation now? Do your worst fruit loop. And..until you explain just what the fuck you were up to the other night, everytime you come on here, particularly when you mention me, I'll be demanding the same...any single, minute piece of justification will do. So far I've seen nothing, cos you've got nothing but bluster and you, me and the fuckin dogs in the street know it...you seem too scared to address the issue. So much for your constant "I'm no coward" refrain. You're a sham, a sordid little nobody.

    And...if that weren't enough..you seem to have the idea that your some kind of intellectual heavyweight...laughable..more delusion. If brains were dynamite, you couldn't perforate your own eardrum. Even thinking about you has got that Coldplay thing starting up again.

    "...and she was all yellow"

  115. Philippa - I see you found it already.

  116. I'm off out anyway. I'll look in tomorrow to see if you've managed to concoct any sort of half-arsed, bullshit excuse for your bizarre postings the other day. Like I've said repeatedly, the threads still there, just put in a link or even refer to the time and location of one of my posts.

    PS..locations from inside your sordid imagination don't count.

    Come on, what's stopping you (other than extreme embarassment and a total loss of face and credibility...as though you still had any)?
    Let's have one of those despataches from the outer edges of Sanity..or wherever it is you live...Nuneaton isn't it?

  117. Good drink, Mr Fish?

    Seriously mate, I'd let it go. It's obvious that she hasn't got anything to respond with, and clear that she should apologise, but she seems reluctant to do so.

    Let's move on.

    Any positive news on the job front?

  118. Yeah, great drink...but that was just a warmup. I'm out for a right skinful tonight. Still got 4 months to look jobwise. Gonna start looking after Xmas.

    As for letting it go...I had done..but up she pops like a bad smell..I'll let go when she stops turning up and pretending she's anything but a poisonous lying scumbag. Either that or a note from her social worker confirming she has reality issues and humouring her is the best hope for recovery.

    Anyway..see ya tomorrow..I'm out for a pint of Traviata or ten. Be cool.

  119. MsChin - ay, not quite what I was talking about, but I did say on WDYWTTA that I was probably conflating several issues (mental health, physical disability, learning difficulties). Bit scared by the guy suggesting that forced sterilisation is the only way to avoid starvation...

  120. Jay, I just checked out your MP3 converter - really excellent. Thx for the tip.

  121. A pint of Traviata...

    How about a nice cold cAida? Get drunk for less than a tenor.

  122. I hear that Wetherspoons have pints of Parsifal at 99p (and shots of Don Pasquale at 3 for a fiver).

  123. MF
    Have a good night out. I'm listening to March of the Special Brew Slaves right now.

  124. Last time I was in Wetherspoons, scherf, it was full of angry mechanics. They'd all shelled out a big wedge at the Concert Hall and Carmen didn't feature a single carburettor.

  125. Well, always nice to have a trip to A&E on a Friday afternoon.......if my mother in law does this one more time I think I might put her back there myself, with a more genuine reason than indigestion.

    Anyway, Simons Town Dot/Jay, about 45 mins in the car from Cape Town and well worth a visit, there isn't a penguin enclosure, they're just on the beach which everyone has access to. The penguins just carry on with their activities as if you're not around. They also have a lot of whale watching there, but we stuck to the penguins and the pub - story of my life.

    Stick Simons Town into Google and you'll probably get a load of websites.

    Jay, SA wasn't even on my list but my husband was desperate to go to the cricket and visit it so we went, and I was surprised by how much I liked it, I hadn't expected to, and I would revisit other places first, but the Cape of Good Hope, Simons Town and the wine trail - if you get the chance I would take it!

    Just booking next years holiday, will involve kids clubs and cheesy evening entertainment - so my advice is get the good ones in while you can!

  126. "Get drunk for less than a tenor."

    I don't watch a lot of tv and even less of ITV but the other night in channel flicking I came across that silly advert for insurance the one with the silly opera singer. it had me in stitches.....

    "I wonder how much they are paying him....(his mate answers in vibrato)........he's only a tenor" I loved it.

    Have a good session Fish and have a big piss before you leave the pub on the way home - remember Comrade there is a CCTV camera somewhere near you!

  127. Philippa
    Mmm, tim's comment is vile.

    And I agree - there are overlapping but very different strands to the disability / sexuality debate, so separate articles might be a better way for CiF to go. Maybe this one on mental health is just the first in a series?

  128. deano
    Hope you've battened down the hatches, seems there's some nasty weather due over the weekend.

  129. Yea chin - it's slashing it down now.

    A favourite sound for me is rain on the roof and I just love the rocking of the van in a gale - I tend to have disgraceful dreams! Well more disgraceful than normal shall we say.

  130. Jay that's a gem of a tool many thanks

  131. Anne - a clear, bright voice of reason, thank you. Best of luck with the flat; sounds lovely!

    Philippa - thank you; it was a Friday-afternoon-and-I'm-about-to-go-home moment.

    MF - I understand your frustration at being accused of things you didn't do. As I recall (and some of it is filling in the gaps as most of the posts were deleted before I saw them), some person or persons starting attacking Bru, I think on Waddya first, without any provocation except that they didn't like her posts.

    Now anyone is entitled not to like anyone else's posts, but why read them if they annoy you?

    Next, Bru seems to have leapt to the conclusion that you were behind all or some of these. You have said you were not, and I believe you.

    This situation has escalated into a war of sorts, which Bru has, in my opinion, unjustly blamed Montana for not controlling.

    The end result is that it puts pressure on Montana from both sides, a pressure which I am sure she could do without. So I am asking for a ceasefire - on everyone's part - that follows Hank's advice of ignoring what you don't like.

    Because Montana doesn't need this shit.

  132. Just to change the perspective a little, I've just received this week's edition of the 'Parish Newsletter' which my brother writes. He's started Emailing it to expats, and I must say that I find it interesting to read the anniversaries of deaths and the births and marriages and so on because they remind of people I grew up with and families I knew. But my point is really this. It's only a small rural village, but I note that this week they are starting to raise money to buy a fishing boat and nets for victims of the Burma cyclone, the Women's Institute are hosting (horror of horrors!) a fashion show for NI Hospices, the guy in the Post Office is collecting old spectacles to redistribute to folk who can't afford new ones, and the (female) Protestant vicar is hosting a tea and coffee morning and cake sale for Marie Curie Cancer Research. It's easy to sneer at all this stuff, of course, especially when it seems to be 'religious', but I wonder if this is the same sort of thing that brusselsexpats means when she talks about charidee and how much she personally contributes, or if 'high-fliers' and 'attractive well-bred people' in Brussels acheive more by spending thousands of euros on dinners and operas. I imagine that it makes them much better people than the not-so-well-off working class who give some time and some of the little money they have to those worse off than themselves. What do you think?

  133. Good post, thauma. Montana certainly doesn't deserve to get caught in the crossfire here. We're all grownups and should be capable of fighting our own battles without blaming an innocent third party.

    Anyway, I'm hoping to hear some good news from Iowa way...

    And my own commitment to the ceasefire is assured. Although I am pissed off that nobody's showered me with bouquets for my Carmen joke...

  134. Hank, it was very funny, but you knew that anyway, didn't you? What is also funny is that the guy what wrote it had the same name as a sort of strange foreign toilet thing that you wash your bits in. fnar fnar.

  135. Scherfig - wot, Prosper Mérimée?

  136. Boom boom, thauma! You're not half thran.

  137. I always thought Armitage Shanks was a Yorkshireman, scherf. Maybe deano can enlighten us...

  138. Sheff Pixie, if you come back tonight, did you finish it, and what did you think of Incendiary?

  139. Scherfig - me lower bits Prosper in the Mérimée. There is no more to discuss politely.

  140. Damn this You Tube thing is good..

  141. Evening all

    First of all:


    Everybody has their faults.
    I can be as boring as f00k at times, and very defensive and self obsessed.
    Hank can be a pillock when he's drunk - sometimes he is really funny, and other times he is downright obnoxious.
    MF can be prolier than thou at times, and disses anyone who hasn't got the requisite amount of dirt under their fingernails for the day.
    Deano sometimes gets a bit saucy when he's had a few.
    Kiz takes things to heart when she shouldn't. Bru is a posh bird who bears a grudge for far too long.
    Scherf gets all angry and celtic and nit-picky.
    (Trying to find some faults with the remainder - I am sure I will eventually...)

    And somehow, magically, Montana is expected to wipe all our arses? Not on.

    So what shall we do? Are people going to keep on having nasty little digs at each other just because they can? What is the fekken point?

    Ignore what you don't like. If anyone says something offensive, just remember that stick and stones, etc... like we were taught when were were kids.

    Also the benefit of ignoring people is that, when they realise they are holding a conversation with themselves on a point and nobody is responding, they will soon get fed up with it and stop doing it. I guarantee it will work. But it takes two to tango.

    Now the first one of you to have a go at me about this will get my foot up their arse. I will find out where you live. :p

  142. all angry and celtic and nit-picky

    I love it, BB! That's me all right. But everybody else is much worse, miss.

  143. I'm like annetan I like opera - I don't understand it but I do it enjoy it. I've only ever been to one, at the Sydney Opera House, and I enjoyed the dressing up bit too.

    Tramp in superb white linen suit etc.

    I don't know how it's funded in Brussels or Australia for that matter. What I do know is that expensive as the tickets tend to be the art form, is in the UK at least, traditionally the most heavily subsided of all the arts.

    Ordinary folk can't afford the tickets but subsidise it for the enjoyment of their superiors. And of course there are all those corporate hospitality scams (tax evasion games).

    The economics of the arts, and increasingly sport, are quite sickening. I don't watch football any longer (except local Saturday league stuff) 'cos it's not good for me blood pressure. Combine all that and then suggest it's really for a charitable purpose and I tend to choke on my own disbelief.

    The whole hospitality/charity interface reminds me of a tax dodge. But then ill bred persons like mesen would say that wouldn't they.

  144. Youtube, BW? Some more John Lee Hooker?


  145. BB - I take delight at your description but respectfully point out that in truth I'm no more saucy when I'm drunk than when I'm sober...It's just that my rantings become more disordered.

    I'm sure that I could get a medical certificate if that would mean that I wouldn't be asked to depart.

    Yea it would be great to get some good news from Iowa - perhaps the Sheriff died and they've elected our hostess as the new one.

  146. "Hank can be a pillock at times..."

    Do you mean I am, or I'm allowed to be, BB?

    Anyway, take your point. I'm not lacking in self-awareness. It hasn't escaped my notice that I've fucked up a lot of good relationships in which the common factor has been me. And to respond to vari's point, much earlier today, maybe that's what drives my anger.

    I'm not going to spill my guts on here tonight about why I can be an obnoxious bastard at times, save to say that a few years ago my Dad, after a few beers, apologised to me for his violence towards me as a kid by saying that he had spent time in a psychiatric hospital in his late teens.

    Life's not easy for many of us. We shouldn't seek out ways to make it harder for others, and I'm genuinely sorry that I do so at times.

    Unfortunately, I do still have a lot of anger, and I self-medicate with alcohol, which isn't the brightest idea obviously.

    But it's how I deal with it, until a better solution turns up.

  147. Have you thought of self-medicating with benylin instead? That works! ;o)

  148. "...holding a conversation with themselves on a point and nobody is responding, they will soon get fed up with it and stop doing it..."

    Please miss I've been doing this for half a lifetime and I still haven't it got under control..Can I be excused making sense please..

    If stoaty were here I venture that he would be asking if you are wearing your horsehair hat...

    I do of course jest - as ever you speak good sense young miss.

  149. Cannot believe the level of insensitivity on the Smith thread to disabled people's sexuality. Philippa (of course) and KillingTime excepted.

    Waltz in particularly eugenistic-nefarious form.

  150. Bless you, Deano.

    I am a bit on my high horse really, rather than the horse-hair. I don't mean to come across as that. I was smiling when I typed that post above, and I am smiling now because I know that, ultimately, everyone here is "good people" warts and all, and we rub along fine most of the time.

    But rather than use the word "tolerate", because that always has an after-taste of grudgingly putting up with something, I prefer to use the other T word - transcend. I think we are all capable of transcending minor tiffs on here so they don't turn into nuclear wars.

  151. Ooh - I shall take a look at that thaum - although it sounds like maybe I will regret it.

  152. Ah yes, BB.

    I propose some public hugs:

    {{{Hank - Kiz}}}
    {{{Monkeyfish - Bru}}}

    Repeat and interchange until cooked.


  153. Yeh, great post BB, but MF is pursuing a grieveance, justifiably so, and not a fight, I suggest anyone else backs off or down and abides by your very wise words, including me.

  154. Oh shit thauma, now you've done screw up my tough love approach.

  155. Good for you Hank - lifting even the tiniest of corners on one's life cover helps others to understand. Even a tiny bit of understanding improves the odds on some tolerance being extended.

    I have had the benefit of lots of tolerance, unearned really in my life. Sadly and unfairly I have seen others whose conduct was more civilised and considerate than mine treated with considerably less tolerance.

    As I said above I think it was 3P4 who noted that throwing an insult is only part of the equation it takes someone to pick the insult up to make it a reality.

  156. Well I never thought I would be saying this, but Hank, I maybe understand more now, I grew up with a father who was an alcoholic, a union man who earned great respect and was committed to his ideal - and I still admire that, but nonetheless an alcoholic who would have a bottle of whiskey in the glove compartment when he collected you from a sleepover and, in brutal times, come home having crapped himself and yes, wasn't averse to dishing out his own solutions to his anger, which were often physical.

    So I can maybe sympathise more than you think. Or not, that's up to you. But if you can lay off people just becauseyou don't like them, I think more people will contribute and maybe things might get improvable - I've made up that word I think, but I like it.

  157. Deano - you are a wise bugger, you are.

    BW - very sorry, will try to think up a link that will make it all up to you.

  158. "I think it was 3P4 who noted that throwing an insult is only part of the equation it takes someone to pick the insult up to make it a reality."

    That is a damn good point, deano. Like a chemical reaction. Take away one of the elements and the reaction is different

    *hark at her, who got kicked out of chemistry at the age of 14*

  159. @thauma - "Waltz in particularly eugenistic-nefarious form."

    I mentioned Waltz's response to the Dorothy Rowe blog on depression here yesterday. Depression's not a problem for Waltz, so it's not a problem per se.

    She really is a spiteful bitch.

  160. Vari - Yes, I read them both and I really liked them. Am looking forward to his next one. MF and Hank might like them (if they go for novels) - he's very hard on the middle classes and meeja types, even though he does write for the Observer - and the story lines are suitably grim.

  161. BB -"....."tolerate", because that always has an after-taste of grudgingly putting up with something,.."

    Interesting thought - I've never had that word association. I see tolerance as something to aspire to - a la Quaker if you like.

    When I mentioned Stoaty and horsehair hat it was a bit of mischief really. I take Stoaty's name as a bye word for saucy.

    You're ok, your honest and fun and quite easy to get along with. And as I said once before I should have been happy to have found myself on a street with you as my neighbour.

  162. Thank you deano

    If I ever venture up to the People's Republic of Yorkshire, it would be my pleasure to buy you a pint.

    Evening sheff! Long time no speak. Hope you are keeping well. And Vari and Anne too. Keep missing posts on here.

    I had my little moan about Waltz yesterday so I shall refrain this evening. I don't want to spoil my pint of Old Speckled Hen.

  163. Deano - ah, you never know about BB, I heard that she throws wild parties until the small hours nearly every night. She's married to a Canuck, you know, and they are world-renowned rabble-rousers.

  164. Evening BB. Just digesting our beloved leaders ruminations on immigration and wondering what mad schemes they're going to dump on us next.

  165. This is so funny. Problem is, sabraguy, who posted it, clearly cannot see the irony in it at all

    "This is just how the perpetrators of 9/11 should be remembered - tried fairly and executed like common criminals."

  166. Deano, the offer (a while ago) still stands, I would love my babies (toddlers really) to have an honorary grandfather with dogs.

    Waltz - an interesting one, I would almost like to debate with her, if she hadn't accused me of being 'stupid' - kind of sets the agenda....

  167. Sheff - I suppose it will filter down to me eventually. We always end up finding out the policies even if they don't formally announce their release. I am having a lot of fun with Ch 53.1.2 of the Guidance and Instructions on Detention and Removal, which allows more weight for delay, and is being ignored in reasons for refusal. That's the one that the Torygraph and Daily Heil were having kittens about a while ago, because they read it to mean an amnesty for legacy cases.

  168. Vari - yes, I don't think Waltz is stupid by any means - sometimes I even agree with her comments (agh!) - but there is that right-wing close-mindedness that almost precludes debate. (She says with left-wing smugness.)

  169. Vari

    I don't even want to debate with her any more, tbh. She just goes way over the line as far as I am concerned. In the MAM school of posters.

  170. BB

    I am having a lot of fun with Ch 53.1.2 of the Guidance and Instructions on Detention and Removal

    You really have to get out more. ;-)

  171. My Dad wasn't an alcoholic, vari, but he was a shop steward. I don't hate the guy, I owe him a lot in many ways. He isn't a bad man, his heart has always been in the right place. He stood up for people, he was always faithful to my Mum, he worked all hours to see that his kids had all they needed.

    But I was the second of four kids, and he always took his anger out on me when I was young. I can't fathom that still. I was bright and conscientious at school, captain of the football team, had a paper round. I was a model kid in many ways, but I always bore the brunt of his anger.

    I was scared to death of him until I hit puberty and outgrew him. I grew up in that home, and in a neighbourhood where violence was the first response.

    So that's my background, and might explain, if not excuse, why I shoot first and ask questions later.

    Anyway, you can all pick the bones out of that and take what you want from it. I've said that I will observe the ceasefire, and hopefully others will do the same, rather than choose to use what I disclose on here against me.

    In which regard, ahead of the agreed ceasefire - Bru, don't call my son a middle class prat again.

    My lad is university educated, and enjoyed a year in Innsbruck, but his values are not your values.

    He's a lovely guy, and like a lot of his age group, he's not as judgemental as either me or you.

    He's spent a lot of time around "well-bred and attractive people". Some of it might have rubbed off on him. It sure as hell hasn't made much of a mark on either you or me.

    Now let's bury that hatchet.

  172. Sheff, I loved and was very moved by Incendiary when I read it, but it disturbed me, as I have said, I have toddlers - enough said.

    Now, a book called the Reluctant Fundamentalist is pretty good - I buy some of the books which are £2.99 if you buy the times, this was one of them - it was stunning.

  173. "sometimes I even agree with her comments..."

    Which comments, thauma? Jeez, she is a neo-liberal troll. She's worse than MAM because she's mastered the art of populist, "The Sun Says" bullshit, whereas MAM is windy and dull. Like the coming weekend apparently.

  174. Vari - when you made the offer several months ago I mentally accepted it instantly. Consider it a done deal. I'm sorry that I was so rude that I forgot to tell you.

    I will one day get round to posting pictures of the dogs so you can show the toddlers.

    You also get as part of the package a picture of hon grandad's dad at the coalface with Henry Moore sketching him in 1942 - I know it sounds too good to be true but it's not.

    You've been busy and away of late so you may not know the story but it's all out there and it's true.

    xx to me new family members...

  175. Vari - The Reluctant Fundamentalist is great - i read it last month. I also recommend The Wasted Vigil by Nadeem Aslam (set in Afghanistan). I can see how Incendiary would hit you if you have small children. I wouldn't even suggest it to my daughter - it would completely freak her out. As an exposition on grief and guilt I thought it was very powerful and incredibly sad.

  176. Hank - kudos for your 21:46 post: it's a rare man who knows himself. I too grew up in a violent household - not physically violent, but with a lot of anger and mental cruelty, and that is why I shy away from arguments.

    Can't immediately recall any Waltz posts that I've agreed with, but I know there have been some. Probably on the libertarian end of things, but I'm not sure.

    I'll let you know next time I find one, but don't hold your breath - it's only been a rare few!

  177. "Hank - kudos for your 21:46 post"


  178. This comment has been removed by the author.

  179. This comment has been removed by the author.

  180. @BW - "fuck the abuse"

    Fuck off ya dick. My post at 20.30 was far superior to my 21.46 post, you fucking hippy(-;

    Anyway, all a bit of a downer this. Time for fun...


  181. Hank - "...But I was the second of four kids, and he always took his anger out on me when I was young..."

    I did wonder and I may have some small insight into this. (May not of course) It comes from the behaviour of my own father towards his four kids including me.

    That insight is added to by discussions with close male friends about their experiences as kids in their families.

    My father was an absolute bastard (not violent but iron rod firm) towards my oldest sister and older brother and yet was like a gentle tolerant being to me the youngest and my other sister third to be born.

    We talked about it a lot in later years. Dad was so antagonistic with my brother that brother left home at 15 joined the Navy as a boy entrant and was then never a family member again. He was savage in rules for my oldest sister (first born) and brother but would tolerate a clock with no hands from the younger sister and me.

    We (my two sisters and I) came to the conclusions that his fear and uncertainty of how to conduct himself as a parent conditioned his behaviour with the first two in the family - thereafter he somehow or other got the hang of being a dad and felt he could relax and be more of his natural self.

    A lot of people find they are parents for all sorts of reason and then have to work through what it means and how you actually do it. Some struggle to start with and then get better with practice. Others continue to struggle - I'm not sure there is a magic formula it sometimes seems a lottery.

    As I have indicated by the time it came to me (youngest) my dad was as soft as shit with me.

    Interestingly - he said to me (without my enquiring) when my first was due "the answer to being a parent is ..you don't say "no" unless you mean it and then if you do you don't change your mind, that's all I know about it..."

    Of course with his first two he got into the habit of saying "no" as a first response when he had no real reason for doing so. He then found himself trying to reinforce his authority when it was never at issue in the first place.

    At least the old bastard learned something of sense from his experience with his first two kids.

    Being a parent is not an automatic experience for many, nor natural or comfortable, at least to start with for many decent people. The confusion sends them to hell in bathcart - I see lots of strugglers every time I go to the supermarket.

    It seems to get tougher as the pressure fom outside influnces bear down on modern young parents.

    I'm hoping to be around to assist a little bit at a distance when my sons finally get around to starting their families. I can hear their response to my suggestions now .........."Fuck off you wild wanker"

    I don't know if this will strike a chord Hank - all families are different. But as Larkin said yer mam and dad fuck yer up

  182. It's your turn on the youtube thing, Bw....

  183. Hank
    You slag !


    NOW we're talking .


  184. Let's start mellow, Hank, and a wee bit hippy. the healing has begun

    Dancing at 12.00, and death metal much later, obviously.

  185. Aw, Hank, that's sooo sweet! ;-)

    Promised BW a linky earlier and you've put me in mind of the great George Clinton.

    Paint the White House Black

    But bugger, I couldn't find the songs I was looking for, most particularly 'Chocolate City'.

    Hey, funkistheway, are you lurking and can you assist?

  186. Van? Probably a bit early for vintage
    Van Halen ???.

  187. Ow, BB, that's Alan Partridge music. Looks like we've gone straight to funk.

    livin in the city

  188. Deano - v. interesting story. I am the eldest, and was the reason for my parents getting married at 19. A bad idea. They were very strict with me, but relatively lenient with my two sisters, who are 7 and 16 years younger than me. They have both thanked me for going first.

    I think the only reason I'm not a *complete* raging psychopath is that my sainted grandmother did almost all of my upbringing until I was 12 and got carted off against my will to the senseforsaken land that is the USA.

  189. deano
    I've just re-read your last post. Frankly, it just rocks; who knows what being a successful, or just or even a 'reasonable' or adequate parent is anymore ? No-one, until *they try it*....

    Some pretty timeless stuff there...

  190. Racist? Eh?

    Anyhoo, that Stevie Wonder track is bloody gorgeous. Used to have that album when I were a thin strip of a lass.

    Puts me in mind of George Benson

  191. Interesting stuff, deano, but my experience is slightly different. You say that your Dad was very strict with the older two, regardless of sex, whereas my experience was that my older sister got a free ride as far as school, career etc were concerned. My Dad, being an old school working class bloke, didn't expect much of my sister.

    Wrongly, of course. She's bright, lovely, happily married with a career and 3 great kids..

    My Dad saw me as his heir, and whipped me into shape. All his parenting mistakes were made at my expense, right from the beatings I got as a kid, pushing me into the wrong schools, university at the wrong time, his dogmatic views on my relationships etc etc...

    My younger brother took a year out before going to university, took a year out after graduating, travelled the world, had a great time.

    And he is so grateful that I was the older brother, and that the mistakes my Dad made with me weren't revisited on him.

    The anger still flares up now, from time to time, at family gatherings. Surprisingly, it's not so much from me as from my brother, who remains outraged on my behalf.

    It's fucking sad, but like you say, deano, the fuck you up. There's worse examples of parenting, obviously, and I'm not a victim like Baby P was, but we are all a product of where we came from.

    I had a meeting a few weeks ago with a very successful and hardnosed businessman who broke down in tears when he recounted the story of how he'd been abandoned at a boarding school by his mother when he was 9, 50 odd years previously.