12 December 2009

Daily Chat 12/12/09

Guglielmo Marconi received the first transAtlantic radio signal at St. Johns, Newfoundland, in 1901.  Delhi replaced Calcutta as the capital of India in 1911.  Father Flanagan founded Boys Town, Nebraska, in 1917.  Jomo Kenyatta became the first President of Kenya in 1964.  Rhodesia changed its name to Zimbabwe in 1979.  A three-train crash at Clapham Junction killed 35 people and injured 500 in 1988.

Born today:  Gustave Flaubert (1821-1880), Edvard Munch (1863-1944), Frank Sinatra (1915-1998), Connie Francis (1938), Dionne Warwick (1940), Emerson Fittipaldi (1946), Tom Wilkinson (1948), Bill Nighy (1949) and our very own Hank Scorpio (1965) and scherfig (1960-something).

It is Neutrality Day in Turkmenistan.


  1. Happy Birthday, Hank!

    Tillyke med fødelsdagen, scherfig!

    Yesterday's photo (Jay) was of Château Chillon on Lake Geneva. Today's is at Lal Qila in Delhi. If I remember correctly, this was where visitors were received. Just beautiful, even now. Hard to comprehend what it must have been like in the 17th C, with the gilding, inlay and tapestries.

    Deano: Nice to see you back! I'm glad you enjoyed Cherry Pink & Apple Blossom White -- it's a favourite of mine. I listened to almost as much Big Bands, Swing, etc. when I was growing up as Pop/Rock -- my father's tastes influencing me there.

  2. Happy Birthday Hank, Scherfig and Bill - babe magnets all!

    Have a good weekend guys.

  3. Good day all (Midnight here but I'll try to float my comments across the zones.)

    Happy birthday to Hank and scherfig! Mrs.B and I are celebrating with a Louis Armstrong night. The man puts the muse upon me. I cannot recommend him strongly enough.

    Montana-- Is that Tom Wilkinson the Quarterback?--Quite a legendary figure on the Canadian prairies, not so much in B.C.

    Hank, Habib--'Where Eagles Dare' is an old favourite of mine, oddly enough, not a well known film.

  4. Morning Edwin, "babe magnets all"? Who knew?

  5. Montana--Please forgive my ignorance, I've got it now.

  6. "It is Neutrality Day in Turkmenistan"

    What exactly does one do on a 'neutrality day'?

  7. wear blue and not make any decisions?
    be swiss?
    just seems an odd thing to celebrate.
    as celebration is rather positive.
    surely to be a proper 'neutrality day', nobody should do anything to mark it, as that would just be missing the point...

  8. Phillipa,
    Could it mean 'Stay out of wars and make a few bob'?

  9. well, that's where I was going with 'be swiss', but that seems an odd aspiration for a country that isn't actually switzerland.

    maybe they're trying to attract lots of banking refugees fleeing UK taxation?

  10. Philippa-- A fairly common grey may be better.(If I May) Much like the colour of the weather today. (Fair to middling) :-)-- Agree that neutral for most would remain status quo. We could be discussing utopianism soon, at this rate.

  11. You could be right. I've often wondered where our bankers would go if they flounced.
    There can't be many countries that are short of a bunch of greedy incompetent arseholes.

  12. Boudican - women always claim they go for wit and humour above looks so I'd guess Hank and Scherfig have it sorted, if maybe not as high on the scale as Bill Nighy!

    Turkmenistan is a human rights disaster area -


  13. BB (et al) - yeah here we are, as promised yesterday, mams birthplace - even has its own Wiki page!

    mam's street

    [Click on the photo to enlarge it! - gives you a better idea of the scale]
    The famous Silkstone Row at Altofts.

    Actually my eldest sister Edie, the one who died this summer, was also born in the same house as me mam. It seems nuts that both of them were so proud to have come from this terrace. As might be expected it really was a very strong community in which everbody knew everything there was to know about everybody else. I guess it was as close to a local tribe as you get on one street.

    Mam’s youngest sister Ida took the house on when their parents died and years after when we returned to see the family all the women in the terrace tribe knew that I was Alice’s youngest even though I didn’t have a clue who they were..

    As a kid we always went to Altofts on boxing day – that was a special ladies day in the miners club when there was much dancing and laughing and generosity amongst what were really mostly very poor people. I loved it.

    Silkstone, by the way, was the name of one of the then richest seams of coal running down through Yorkshire. Lots of the old pits were built on it. The seam was even mined down south in PCC's place in Barnsley

    Altofts also had one of the smallest co -ops in the country. It was originally located in the first house at the end of the terrace. When mam was a lass she was sent down the co-op with a jug for the beer for her dad.

    The terrace itself was so long that two ‘ walk through’ entries were cut through the lower ground floor of two of the cottages. It would for many have been a very long walk around the block from front to back door without the walk throughs.

    If you were playing out in the street it would have been a long way round to the outside lav 'cos you weren't allowed to walk through the house if you were dirty!

    {to be cont.)


  14. Silkstone Row - longest terrace in all of Europe tha knows!!. Eat your hearts out Southern Cousins...

    Have a great day all.

    Don't forget the photo's Stoaty.


  15. Edwin-- A friend just returned from southeast Asia( He is with Doctors without borders, off and on for 15 years.) He was in Turkmenistan for about 6 months .He says the situation is dire but unknown in the west. He also says it is quite well known in Asia, but not much support from close countries either. Fucking sad it is.

    Now Bill Nighy, he is a babe magnet, he's used his reticence and quiet chivalry to do quite well for himself in films.

  16. Morning all,

    Well GIYUS was on blistering form last night wasn't he? Withering attacks on those on the Ciffies shortlist, especially Jay again. And promising a UT Xmas epiphany.

    He then calls me the 13thDuck, tries to outcomedy me (and probably succeeds) and accuses me of being a third rate Armando Ianucci!

    Best compliment I've ever had.

    However **puts conspiracy hat on*** he was defending Hank and monkeyfish AGAIN. Hmmmm, is it just me that's wondering whether GIYUS hails from that famous Belgian city of Nottingham?

    I bet he rides a Raleigh bike as well.

  17. Not my birthday..but I am another of the '65ers and, by my calculations: the eldest of that particular vintage by several months. So I think a bit of fuckin respect is due from certain quarters when addressing me in future. I've got a headache that would crack Fred Flintstone's bowling ball at the momement..but I might be back later to put teach you youngsters a thing or two.

  18. Think you're off beam there your Duckness...do you live in the middle of a Tory MP's moat btw?

    I've always had a strange polarising effect on Belgian oddballs..they either love me or hate me..no grey area with them folks...no grey matter in some off them either..it's all that opera and shopping..rots your brain from the inside.

  19. monkeyfish,

    maybe the polarising geography and language barrier of Belgium is the reason for the love you or hate you attitude?

    I'm convinced GIYUS is a Dutch speaker, he seems to have that absurdity that's part of the Vlaams mindset, so it's the French that don't like you De heer Fish.

    I speak a bit of Dutch (lived and worked in the Netherlands for 5 years, a bit rusty now mind), if I'm in tonight I'm going to engage GIYUS in Dutch.

    Could be the bizzarest exchange yet. Uitstekend!

  20. Happy Birthday, Hank and Scherfig! And so young...
    and what a soundtrack to welcome you into the world

    Hope you're both paying attention to Monkeyfish.

    Good link on UT2. Made me think of EP Thompson's attack on Althusser. I can't find a link to it: anyone?

  21. Stoaty - I really like that painting of yours it's class in my book. Thanks for the enlarged pic on your blog.

    I saw that you think; "Jack the V is the man as far as I am concerned." I very much like his work too.

    Let's have some more photo's of your other work too when you have a minute.

    Fuck the critics I love what I see as contextual painting - it draws me in and unleashes my wild imagination...

    Getting the lass to sit down and dine with me on an open and empty beach whilst a guy shades us from the sun is only part of the painting for me - it's in the conversation that they are having that I become embroiled.

    I adore it. My conversation with the adorable lass is never the same two days running - it has to be said that she encourages me to utter untruths...

  22. Give him my regards. I'm a long term fan btw... stuck up for him a few times going back a long way. It pisses me off when he's accused of trolling;'trolling' on cif seems to have been conflated with going back under a new name once banned..and not...erm..whatever the real definition might be. Never been sure myself.

    I've occasionally swallowed the blue pill and re-registered under various nommes de plume and managed to, at least partially divert the debate and drop a few home truths which elicit plenty of responses; many supportive..then when my 'true identity' is revealed, I'm accused of trolling. FWIW, I don't recognise trolling as a concept...outright abusive posters are one thing, but when minority or marginal povs are deemed 'trolling' you're on a slippery slope. Besides, he's pretty consistent and mainstream in his view on the inequities of cif and the motivations and competence of some of its employees.

    He's certainly no troll in my book, and the place just wouldn't be the same etc.

  23. Good news for the birthday boys and MF - a few more years and you body gives up on the alarm nonsense and hangovers become a thing of the past.

    When you get past a certain age you suddenly become able to drink wildly for days on end and when it is time to stop you don't have a hangover.

    A crud on the roof of the mouth and around the teeth perhaps but nothing a few litres of water and a toothbrush won't sort.

    Like every good thing in life it takes practice of course.

    I'm told that towards the end life has its own reward as the liver starts to give up the ghost - you get back to the delightful stage you started out at. Two pint madness.

    I am looking forward to that bit. It sounds cheap and cheerful. As I recall it it was great fucking fun

  24. I keep meaning to ask you guys- the label GIYUS? Acronym??

  25. monkeyfish,

    absolutely agree with you. In his scattergun approach, some topics he brings up do hit the target.

    The fact he's persona non grata and is zapped instantly has become an integral part of the CiF pantomime. CiF would be a poorer place without him, he's part of the furniture.

    deano, I think GIYUS comes from his prebanning days when he was 'Giyusandtrolls9' and I believe GIYUS is an acronym for Give Israel Your Unconditional Support (He was being ironic of course).

  26. Morning folks!
    To Bitterweed (sorry its late!) Hank and Scherfig 'Pen blwydd hapus'!

    Happy birthday!

    llewelyn ap Gruffydd was the last Prince of Wales. His last resting place is shrouded in mystery. The present incumbent is an English usurper!

    Bad news yesterday my buyers have just asked for a reduction of £20,000 on the originally agreed price! Thats what a builder estimated was the cost of putting the outside right. It includes a lot of work that although its desireable is not necessary and can be done much cheaper. Already dropped price by £7,000! They can whistle frankly!

    Rather put the house back on the market, local school is going Welsh medium, which I was against but house prices will be going up here as a result. Lots of middle class parents in S Wales will want to send their little Catrins and Brynns to welsh medium schools (thought be a 'good career move'). The working class don't usually attend these schools. Quite the opposite in the North of course. The area will become gentrified and where will the people who traditionally live here go?

    But the people buying my house will benefit from this and they want £20,000 of my money as well? 21st century greed eh?

  27. A42 - oh sorry to hear your news our lass. Fuck em. Happen things will turn out better for you in the long run. I hope so.

    Best W.

  28. HB to those celebrating, and nice photo Monatna. I was in India for most of last month, and really can't recommend a bit of sight-seeing around forts and palaces highly enough.
    I must admit to a certian liking for Giyus: points for sheer, bloody-minded persistence ,minus points for being infuriating and sometimes fruit-loop monomaniacal or plain bonkers, plus points for occasionally inspired wordplay, minus points for being tiresome when you're not in the mood,plus points for running rings round the moderators: we all know it's him(her? Prob not), just resurfacing under yet another username.
    I think,on balance, that leaves him marginally in credit...

  29. Argh, fat fingers this morning. Montana, certain,and possibly other words were misspelled there.

  30. "The present incumbent is an English usurper!"

    I thought he was a kraut.

  31. annetan - ah, the travails of 'negotiation'. weird how people can suddenly come over all grasping. it's like a bizarre poker game - sounds like you're holding decent cards and therefore should raise a bond-esque eyebrow at 'em. good luck with it...

  32. Re Bill Nighy 'reticence and chivalry'? Yeah maybe but its what that seems to be hiding thats the real attraction!

  33. MF I've always had a strange polarising effect on Belgian oddballs..they either love me or hate me..no grey area with them folks...no grey matter in some off them either..it's all that opera and shopping.. rots your brain from the inside

    Watch it doesn't rot yours! you're sounding obsessed. Personally prefer belgian chocolate to Belgian oddballs!

    But tastes differ! and I would appear to be 23 years older than you so watch it young 'un! :D

  34. Deano,
    Interesting street.
    The lack of boot scrapers would indicate a fairly recent photo.
    Or lack of boots.

  35. Deano 'A42' LOL!

    I seem to have become a road!
    The A42 is a major trunk road in the United Kingdom. It links junction 23A of the M1 motorway to junction 11 of the M42 motorway. The A42 is in effect a continuation of the M42, and its junctions are numbered accordingly.

    It is built to a similar standard to the M42 being a grade separated dual carriageway. The six mile Measham and Ashby-de-la-Zouch bypass section was opened in August 1989 at a cost of £33m. (Wikipedia)

    Re: Prince Charles - yes he is a kraut isn't he? But the tradition of the heir to the throne being 'Prince of Wales' dates from a daft trick played on the Welsh by Edward I.

    Instead of asking for someone who could speak Welsh they asked for someone who 'had no English'. Probably because the spokesperson did not speak English well! So he gave them his baby son who couldn't talk yet (in any language).

    All this is not Charles' fault of course but he did go along with the investiture didnt' he?

  36. annetan42,
    The house buyers ploy seems a shitty trick. I've heard there is a lot of that sort of thing about.
    Are they put up to it by estate agents I wonder?

  37. That Beligan Monk's piss Leffe is rather nice too. Taken half and half the blonde and the dark is a delightful way to spend a cheap winters Saturday (Cheap ferry returns from Hull in the winter months. Overnight out Friday back Sat Night)

    Although a glass too much in Bruges made me miss the ferry back so not that cheap in the end!

  38. A42

    "All this is not Charles' fault of course but he did go along with the investiture didnt' he?"

    Didn't he just!

    What a twat he looked when they stuck that hideous modernist crown on his head. I think we all then knew nowt good would come of it!

    Did you clock my link to Burton's UnderMilkwood last night??. Now that is Welsh class.

  39. Babe you ain't just any old road:

    "The current road is the second incarnation of the A42. The original (1923) route was Reading to Birmingham via Oxford. The whole road disappeared in 1935 "

    You is, as all the Furnivall lasses are, special. You is a reincarnation...

  40. "What a twat..."

    Mind you he has an interesting taste in harpists!

    His latest just got done for drug related 'handling stolen goods' to fund her drug habit as I understand it!

    Dog walking...

  41. Deano - Re: Richard Burton just found it Brillian!t I have that on vynil must get one of those digitising thingies!

    The combination of Dylan Thomas' wonderful language and very Welsh humour and Burton's wonderful speaking voice - unbeatable!

    Thanx for the clip!

  42. Afternoon all

    Happy Birthday to Hank and Scherfig! Hope you have a good day.

    Thanks for the link, Deano - will take a look.

    Anne - they are trying it on. Tell em no, and see what happens.

  43. Deano,
    I've just seen a sparrow hawk in my back garden.
    He chased around after the sparrows who dived into their Cypruss tree. Little bastard.

  44. colinthestoat
    Even the bastards have to eat.

  45. heyhabib,
    Indeed and I would appear to be fattening up their dinner with birdseed. Aint nature wonderful.

  46. Deano
    spot on about that git Blair. What he is effectively saying is that he could not have cooked up some semblance of a legal argument - and one that is highly challengable at that - for invading Iraq, he would have gone ahead anyway in flagrant breach of international law. Agression against a sovereign nation for the purposes of regime change is a war crime - as simple as that.

  47. BB,
    And Saddam would have been a useful ally against the more excitable type of muslim.

  48. I dunno about useful ally, although it is true to say that he didn't have much truck with islamic fundies either. Although in the latter months before the invasion he had started to make noises about it being a "holy war" and such, to try and get his neighbours onside, no doubt.

  49. Afternoon all,

    just survived Xmas shopping in Glasgow. Kurtz in 'Apocalypse Now' sums it up best- ''the horror, the horror. Anyway, it's done.


    I know you're out today but if you read this, I've thought of a UT2 topic you may want to delve into for us as I know you're a tax expert.

    There's a CiF article about tax exiles. I did a bit of snooping about. Wow- the Taxpayers alliance, the shadowy 'Midlands Industrial Council', planting an article a day in the right wing fish wrappers and the major sponsors it would seem of the dear old Conservative Party.

    A toxic mix of Tories, right wing media and shadowy cabals. Nauseating stuff.

    It seems Boy George is following almost all recommendations of these fucktards, so while we 'have to take our austerity medicine' it looks 'trebles all round' for the Tory sponsors.

    A clear breach of political trust with the people and another reason why the Conservatives will not reform the political system- their puppetmasters will not allow it.

    Anyway, is it worth an article?

  50. BB,
    Can't help thinking they hanged him for taking the piss out of George senior.
    Now are things better, for us, in that part of the world?
    If you say Blair is a war criminal for indulging in regime change,and I certainly do, then you have to accept that Saddam should have been left in situ.
    Perhaps he could have been a counter balance to that grinning sod in Iran.
    We needed a Kissinger but all we got was a couple of God bothering little shits who wanted to be 'war leaders'

  51. 'just survived Xmas shopping in Glasgow.'

    Am keeping well away from the main drags now. Had to go to Argyle St Friday - like watching a zombie movie while sitting in the fridge.

    No sparrowhawks out our back Colin but this year the blackbirds opposite managed to raise their young despite magpies and cats - our fat old cat likes to watch the blackbirds from our balcony and they watched him - would box him in and fly overhead, spooking him inside.

  52. Edwin,
    Our cat is well past it and the birds seem to know.
    They shout at her when she's trying to have a crap, which embarrasses her. Not on really.
    Going off now to feed daughter's cats.

  53. Not too sure how Turkmenistan observes Neutrality Day, but they are apparently quite serious about their neutrality. They have a monument to it. The statue on the top is of their demented former ruler, Saparmurat Niyazov. It (the statue) rotates 360° every 24 hours, so that it always faces the sun.

    Alisdair: I'm afraid I only got to see Lal Qila and the Shahi Qila in Lahore. Much of our planned itinerary in India & Pakistan had to be scrapped due to security concerns. I was there in Dec. 90/Jan. 91. The entire state of Uttar Pradesh was under curfew because of rioting by Hindu extremists wanting to destroy the Ayodhya mosque, so we couldn't go to Agra. Mumbai got cancelled just because. Peshawar got cancelled due to violence and Quetta got snowed in. So the trip ended up consisting only of Karachi, Lahore and Delhi, with a day trip from Delhi to a city called Bisru in Haryana. Still, it was an incredible experience and I'd be happy to go back any time. Loved Karachi -- perhaps partially because that's where we ended up spending the most time (?).

  54. Your Grace - that's why I do most of mine online. Can't be doing with fighting my way through the hordes.

    Colin - is the world a better place without Saddam? Probably. But I am not so sure that his removal has led to increased stability in the area at all.

  55. We needed a Kissinger but all we got was a couple of God bothering little shits who wanted to be 'war leaders'

    No -- I know what you meant by this, Colin, but Kissinger was one of the cunts partially responsible for the fucker's existence in the first place. What we needed was to have realised at least 60 years ago that "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" is no way to conduct foreign policy and that it will always come back to bite you in the arse. Seeing how it was way too late in the day to change that, we needed someone who wasn't a warmongering chickenhawk.

  56. Just popping in for a couple of secs ... back later ... but

    HAPPY BIRTHDAYS Hank & Scherfig!!

  57. Montana,

    indeed. Tom Lehrer's famous words when Kissinger won the 1973 Nobel peace prize- ''Satire is dead''.

  58. Like thauma, I’m just popping in briefly, firstly to say Happy Birthday to Hank and scherfig, and secondly to agree with Professor Wildhack’s assessment of long-range US geopolitical strategy (if it merits such a title).

    The invasion of Iraq wasn’t an aberration, it was pretty standard stuff - build up a dictator because he’s our enemy’s enemy, then take him out when he becomes too powerful and therefore more of a threat than the original enemy…

    And while we’re on this subject, can someone (anyone) explain what President Obama has actually done to earn his Nobel Peace Prize?

    Glad to see the snow doesn’t seem to have slowed you down any Montana.

  59. Mmm... eating lovely home-made chicken soup made by hubby. Best jewish penicillin ever. If this doesn't zap the germs nothing will...

  60. Hi Deano, nice to see you back! Interesting story of Altofts.

    Anne - sorry to hear about your setback. :-(

    Duke - tried to start the shopping today, but all I managed to do was to buy myself a new pair of jeans. Fucking *hate* shopping.

    Agree with you on Kissinger, Montana.

  61. Andy - too right, Obama's Peace Prize is starting to look almost as ironic as Kissinger's.

    Saddam Hussein was a tosser, but not nearly as much of a tosser as most other middle eastern rulers. Women at least had a pretty fair shake under his regime, although the Kurds had a nasty time, of course. Chemical weapons supplied by USA, Inc.

    The way I've heard it about the first Gulf War (and of course, this is all internet-based, so up for discrediting), is that Saddam spoke to the US embassy, and said, "Hey, those Kuwaitis are slant-drilling under my borders and stealing my oil. I want to do something about it. Do you mind?"

    The US response was, "None of our business; go ahead, mate."

    Or words to that effect.

  62. You know those Christmas songs that YOU ABSOLUTELY LOVE, but are a bit ashamed of really?

    Got the TV on at some music channel and Sir Thumbsaloft himself has just come on with 'Pipes of peace'. I bloody loved this song and as a kid and still do.

    His Maccaness playing both a British Tommy and German? Unbelievably trite exploitation of WWI for cheap evocation of seasonal brotherhood? A Kid's choir?

    It's got the lot and I love it. I know I've left myself open like a Scottish lower league defence, but please, does someone else love it as well?

    ''All round the world, little children being born to the world, got to give them all you can till the work is done....''

  63. Tree up!

    It looks bloody horrendous. But it's up! just in time for flatmate's brithday party - theme: a child's birthday party. she is wrapping the pass the parcel, someone else is inflating balloons. i have made cake.

    busy little bees, we are.

    hope everyone has a lovely evening

  64. Oh, and Kissinger was a git. Realpolitik was just another word for 'doing what the fuck we like'. Sort of like post-modernism with nuclear weapons.

    as you were

  65. I've got a soft spot for all those christmas songs really - apart from the Cliff Richard ones that make my own intestines want to come up through my throat and strangle me.

    Pipes of Peace is gorgeous. The one that does it for me is Two Little Boys though - distinct memories of being at my Nana's and Papa's in Scotland at Christmas and seeing a little tear in my Papa's eye. He fought in the Somme with the KOSB.

  66. Another picture of Silkstone Row Altofts from the other end of the terrace showing one of the smallest co-op shops in the UK!

    Fegging amazing what's out there on tinternet.

    Altofts Co-op

    OK - fair comment - So Fegging what!

    thamua - "Fucking *hate* shopping."

    I've been waiting for you to show up and say just that. I know we are comrades in arms on that one! I like BB's approach if you can't get it on the internet it don't exist.

    Wild fucking horses couldn't drag me shopping at this time of year. They couldn't drag me dad shopping at any time of year. Me mother bought everything he wore unseen for all their married life.

    I never once knew the old sod go into any shop anywhere in the world. Socks, shoes, underpants, you name it she bought them and he never complained or asked her to take anything back. He would wear shoes that were too small for him rather than go in a shop...

    I once told him about Vance Packard and the "Hidden Persuaders" - his reply was to the effect they can fucking try all they like.

  67. They've opened up the front page Blair story for comments, btw

  68. Oooh, two little boys BB. Gets me every time.

    I apologise for starting this conversation so early on a Saturday. This is definitely one for later when everyone's in an advance state of refreshment:

    ''You're ma besht mate, ah tell you whit, see that 'when a child is born' by the boay Mathis, fills me up every time by the way, hic....''

  69. Big up to the weekend birthday crew!

    And here's something for happy people everywhere


    Small world - a relative of mine lives just off Foxholes Lane! The very road you hail from is near Tuscany Way .. whereas I can only claim that I live within a short drive of both Wales and Rhodesia.

  70. Haven't heard that in a while, MsChin. Lovely choon.

  71. Your Grace

    You "sounded" just like my Uncle Alistair there. :o)

  72. Have a great party Pip. Musical chairs and statues are always good fun too...

  73. Oh Lord, still watching the videos.

    I need to get myself Andrew Ridgeley's jumper off the 'Last Christmas' video. Pure class.

    And George, it's only 1985 and you're STILL fooling no one mate.

  74. The acid test about Kissinger always seemed to me to be something like:

    If you had boarded and were sitting patiently and calmy waiting on a transatlantic transamerica flight what would you do if he got on a sat down next to you?

    For me even if it was only a cross channel flight I'd get off the plane I simply couldn't stand the bastard.

    I sometimes think we try to to be too sophisticated in our political reasoning. We look for reasons and justifications where sometimes perhaps non are necessary.

    Sometimes our very being screams at us that it is just not plausible with a tosser like that.

    When Blair became leader with his hideous grin my instincts screamed "... it'll fucking end in tears ". When he got rid of clause IV I just had to go with it.

    I have no pleasure, and never will have, in saying "I told you so". I left a Party I had been active in for all of my adult life to then. I was tears when I left but I could not face myself in the mirror whenever I thought that I might, by my continued presence, be mistaken as Blair supporter.

    For me he was so patently and obviously a self seeking manipulator, all I could then do was to hope that my instincts were wrong.

  75. See, the problem I have with the whole premise of the 'last christmas' video is that Ridgeley is completely oblivious to the lingering looks Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou and the woman concerned are giving each other.

    Now bearing in mind, the Ridge and Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou are in a group together and its clear that the Ridge has stolen Panayiotou's 'burd', he seems quite happy to let the two of them go off and have intimate chats etc

    I'm sorry, but Ridgeley is made to look like a complete fool throughout this. I hadn't realised how much.

    Christ knows what Baudrillard would have made of this.

  76. Your Grace

    I think you are reading a bit too much into it tho, eh?...


    Last Christmas was my Mum's fave Christmas song. She used to sing it every year, and we all used to cringe at her doing it. I would give five years of my own life to have her back singing it again this Christmas though. Sigh.

    One bloody beer and I am getting all maudlin an that... Perhaps another one will cheer me up a bit :o)

  77. Yeah, I know I'm off on one.

    Just thinking about a new discussion topic based on what was discussed this week on postmodernism.

    Postmodernist deconstruction of Christmas videos.

    The mind boggles what Derrida would have made of Noddy Holders mirrored top hat from the TOTP performance of 'Merry Christmas Everyone'.

  78. Cheers Chin - I always thought we would have something in common somewhere. I'm choosy about who I have in my boat!

  79. Andrew Ridgley's jumper? Postmodernist deconstruction of Christmas videos?

    Put 'em in the bin, Duke, and pour yourself a drop of the hard stuff. Sounds like you need it!

  80. deano,

    just remember Blair has millions in the bank. You have a soul and integrity. And you can't buy a soul and integrity even if you have the wallet of Croesus.

    And that's what counts.

  81. MsChin,

    I know. It's what happens when the wife is on nightshift!

  82. Duke

    You know those Christmas songs that YOU ABSOLUTELY LOVE, but are a bit ashamed of really?

    No. I ABSOLUTELY HATE all xmas songs. (Except of course for the Pogues/McCall one.)

    And this time of year you get the horrible fucking things stuck in your head and it's enough to drive one over the edge.

    Deano - fair play to your dad; sounds like a wonderful, reasonable bloke.

    Wild fucking horses couldn't drag me shopping at this time of year.

    Hehe, coincidentally enough, I got pissed enough last weekend to get on the karaoke, and my choice was ... Wild Horses.

  83. Rebus on the telly at 9, Your Grace - ITV 3.

    OK, I know it's Edinburgh, but still a good show. And Ken Stott is a far better Rebus than John Hannah was. Got that evil glint in the eye and the swagger of the almost-alki about him.

    I dunno what it is about him. His face looks like all the bits were picked up at a jumble sale and shoved together, but he has a lot of charm.

  84. Damn you telly-owners. It sounds tempting and a good Rebus characterisation.

  85. BB,

    Stott as Rebus looks like a Caledonian Columbo doesn't he. Completely dishevelled but with a glint in his eye.

    thauma, even this?

    Sentiments anyone will agree with except Tories.

  86. Thaum

    ITV Player here: http://www.itv.com/itvplayer/video/?Filter=111513

  87. Whoa. On a whim, thought I'd post a link to a Sarah McLachlan song.

    The video is seriously weird in a radfem sort of way and changes the way I'd thought of the song. Although it's rather interesting at the same time!

    Answers on a postcard as I'm fading fast tonight....

  88. Sarah MacLachlan has got one of those voices I love! Thanks for that.

    This was one of my fave dance anthems: Silence

    Really strange video that goes with it as well.

  89. Duke - I have a completely new disgust for the previously-stellar JB after assaulting my ears and eyes by watching that.

    I shall try to erase it from memory.

    Ta BB, will try to remember to watch it!

  90. BB, yes, I love her voice too.

    Very interesting vid you posted. Being in a post-pub, about-ready-for-bed kind of mood, I'm inclined to rate it as post-feminist equality-of-the-sexes sort of thing.

    Sorry for all the hyphens.

  91. Fab!

    Right - off to watch Rebus for a bit.

  92. MsChin - nice one; very relaxing! Believe it or not, think I will be off to bed now. zzzzz

  93. thauma

    Late night shabeen music does it for me.. sleep well.


    The jumpers are, erm, stylish. The Christmas song is just beautiful.

  94. Ken Stott fabulous Rebus.

    There is no room for morality in foreign policy.
    Blair gave us a moral crusade and we could be stuck with it for a long time, along with an increasingly stroppy Iran.

    Just seen Robbie Williams on X factor, I like him but there is a touch of the Norman Wisdoms about him.
    Can't make up my mind if he is a very small giant or a bloody big dwarf.

  95. Bit late to the party and only dropping by but just wanted to say happy birthday to Hank and Scherfig.

    Deano - that is really interesting stuff about Silkstone Row. It does look exceedingly long from the picture. It is interesting to know about the coal - is that why Silkstone near Barnsley is called that?

    BB - I always really miss my dad at this time of year. Always. It is one of those times of year that make you think of absent loved ones.

    Annetan - just wanted to say I am sorry about the house. They sound like they are trying it on to me. Hopefully they will back down. Good luck with it.