26 February 2010


Napoleon escaped from Elba in 1815.  The Original Dixieland Jass Band made the first ever jazz recording in 1917.  A truck bomb parked under the North Tower of the World Trade Center detonated, killing six and injuring more than 1000 in 1993.  Barings Bank collapsed in 1995, due to speculative trading by securities broker, Nick Leeson.

Born today:  Christoper Marlowe (1564-1593), Victor Hugo (1802-1885), Honoré Daumier (1808-1879), William "Buffalo Bill" Cody (1846-1917), Fanny Cradock (1909-1994), Fats Domino (1928), Johnny Cash (1932-2003), Sandie Shaw (1947) and Emmanuel Adebayor (1984).

It is the feast day of St. Nestor.


  1. Thanks for concern and wishes, everyone. I'm pretty sure Cinnamon isn't the cause of my current problems -- this happens every couple of years or so. This has been an unusually tough winter (14 inches of snow or more on the ground since 6 December and lots of temps in the negative teens) and the LRI prevents the asthma medication from being fully effective. The antibiotics should help (my doctor was fairly disgusted with the ER folks for not prescribing any on Saturday).

  2. Hey Montana, hope the ABs help and you are on the mend. I'm off to interview for the job i did last spring/summer, afk till tmra night. Have a good bash in the toon, wish i could make it there..

  3. Good luck turminderxuss!!! am keeping things crossed for you.

    Montana - you too, and happy it isn't the cat (I know that sounds strange, but...nice to have a cat)

  4. rather charming typo (in an otherwise very good post on the 'sexualisation' leader):
    If children saw nothing but women wearing habibs, they would want to wear them too, but with their own edge
    Well, of course, we love our habib here...

    Apologies, think nightnurse may not have worn off yet. feel a bit spacey.

  5. Montana,

    glad to hear you're doing better. When I read the words ´American ER´, I keep thinking Cook County General.


    best of luck with the job interview. It isn´t the pub you wrote about last week is it?


    don´t underestimate habib, I´m sure there´s loads of Manc women would love to wear him. And I must have caught the cold from you, I´m loaded with it.

  6. Quote of the day right here from MoveanyMountain on the compassion thread.

    I agree CiF is too cynical and corrosive these days.

  7. your grace - am planning a trip to the pharmacy to try to find the french equivalent of night nurse, which should be interesting, given that when my mate tried that, the first thing she was given was a medicament homeopathique and when she went back and pointed out that this meant it contained bugger all, was basically given a speedball. Strange how the French like under- and over-medication about equally...

  8. Philippa,

    wow, a speedball for a common cold? What the hell were French doctors precribing for the mexican flu?!

  9. Morning all just been reading the last bit of yesterday’s thread about the third sector. Most of you know that I was a basic skills numeracy tutor for the last 15 years of my career.

    Most of the women there had started as volunteers and ended up as paid tutors the ethos was total dedication to the students. We worked for them not for the management or the council. If a student had problems that needed social services we called them, if the social security cut their benefit (usually because they were accused of not learning to read fast enough or something similar) we phoned social security and spoke on their behalf. Not part of our job description but these people were important to us, something our employers appeared not to understand (or possibly even felt threatened by?)

    Just after I retired a new management team took over (still county), they started a campaign of bullying that effectively got rid of most of the really experienced tutors in three years.

    The place used BUZZ, went upstairs to our floor a year after I left - the atmosphere had gone, half of the classes I used to teach (the numeracy classes for people with learning difficulties) had been closed. Although I regularly go in for a chat with the woman at reception I don't go upstairs now. This place used to have the reputation as the 'flagship' basic skills centre in Wales, they are systematically destroying it- why? Possibly to make it more attractive to a ‘third sector’ provider?

    There has been a noticeable reduction in provision of this sort for people with learning difficulties over the whole country. These people have even less of a voice than the rest of us and their education is most unlikely to achieve qualifications that lead to employment. This means that under the present funding system they get less money.

    The tradition of adult education in this country used to have a solid working class base with organisations like the Worker's Education Association championing education as an end in itself as well as a means to advancement.

    This is being strangled under Nulabour.

  10. Been tempted to post again on CiF, but by the time I see a thread, the overwhelming thought is (as the Duke's alluded to) why fucking bother, as it's already overrun with either the likes of that Nulab apologist and ludicrously blinkered Natascha, or by the Ayn Rand/uber-rightist fruit-loops. The vaguely comedic stuff, pointing out the inadequacies of the arguments (and the desperate shortcomings of so many of the ATL pieces) all gets vanished/moderated away. It's quite sad in a way. Only those who've drunk the Kool-Aid are allowed to remain (n.b. I know technically it wasn't Kool-Aid at Jonestown, but that's the term in public usage), together with of course the editor's pets.The pettiness and plain stupidity sticks in the craw: person A says Newlab will get wiped out hoorah, person B says, you bastard Tory (which doesn't follow on from person A's point), ha ha, your lead is slipping, support the project, Brown is fantastic.
    Person C comes along and (rightly) says a pox on both (all) neo-liberal top-down technocratic and hypocritical parties.
    D and E then appear and say, ooh, C is cynical, or C is ignorant of the realpolitik, and the key is to keep the Tories/new labour out so you must support NewLab/the Tories.
    C returns and says, well, if you're talking realpolitik, then the whole fecking system and set-up is broken, with the duopoly in the UK a bleeding disgrace.
    F then come along and regales us of how much better life is on the Continent,dahlings, G enters the fray and says it's all a huge conspiracy.
    repeat ad nauseam

  11. "wow, a speedball for a common cold? What the hell were French doctors precribing for the mexican flu?!"

    common cold => heavy duty painkiller / downer + significant stimulant / upper (way higher than your average Beechams cold & flu remedy)

    they're still vaccinating here, imagine treatment involves morphine. i got post-surgical anti-inflammatories when i got a throat infection...

    alisdair - too true. but you missed "H turns up and tries to sell us ugg boots". that seems to be happening quite a bit...

  12. Alisadir,

    Ha Ha! Cracker, nail on the head. You should post that on WADYYA.


    slightly disappointed. I thought you meant speedball in the way that a speedball took the much lamented John Belushi away from us.

  13. Alisdair,

    Oh and I do realise you're not arabic as in Ali Sadir as alluded to in my last post but are in fact Alisdair.

  14. Morning. Alisdair

    Sadly true. It starts with the ATL contribution - quick precis.

    The third sector will provide top class services for zero cost.

    A - Here here!

    B - Piffle

    C - (Post removed)

    D - Yes, but what about Israel/ GB/ Garden gnomes/ Whatever?

  15. Good Gracious

    Man with rickety lorry - shouting something incomprehensible but appears to be collecting scrap metal.

    New job creation scheme?

  16. Night nurse and knockout drops - I was once on opiate type pain killers - lost appetite completely and my hair was like a bunch of dried sticks. Not a pretty sight.

  17. annetan,

    an all too depressing story. Where you say:

    If a student had problems that needed social services we called them, if the social security cut their benefit (usually because they were accused of not learning to read fast enough or something similar) we phoned social security and spoke on their behalf. Not part of our job description but these people were important to us, something our employers appeared not to understand (or possibly even felt threatened by?

    cannot be measured in the spurious target based format and is therefore in New Labour management eyes worthless.

    And as the targets are massaged, as the unmeasurable human touch is ironed out, as the very essence of the voluntary organisation is regenerated into an empty technocratic bureaucracy, everyone loses.

  18. Anne

    There used to be an element of humanity - person to person caring - in the provision of services. No more. Caring is not cost effective in the monetary sense. How much more we have lost cannot be calculated - merely observed.

  19. 13th Duke, Leni

    What you say is sadly true and looking at some of the comments on the compassion thread we can see how common such attitudes are becoming.

    Society is becoming a very nasty place to be, caring, compassion, love are now seen old fashioned and stupid the greatest fear seems to be a fear of being 'gullible' or 'fooled' by 'sob stories' from the poor who are of course just lazy and evil.

  20. Has been a dull week on CIF, indeed. I thought Milne's article was very poor by his standards. Not that the issues he looks at dont exist, but I think he failed to argue them well at all and in some cases was being just plain muddled.

    Interesting post, Annetan, its great all this "reform" of public services, isnt it. The public have never led calls for private firms in public services, nor the tripling of managers compared to front line staff, nor the huge expense on consultants, nor PFI. It has been entirely foisted on the nation by the political class who have presented a very united front on it.

    Everything is now the market. And it doesnt seem to matter how many disasters there are, how many deaths, rail crashes, hospital hygiene crises, state bailouts of failed PPPs, reports showing the abysmal value for money and outright corruption that is rife, none of it matters. It just goes on and on.

    So when people are criticised for being overly cynical this is what comes to mind. It isnt plausible to say its mere incompetence, or ideological blindness. The results are there, the reports are in - largely an unmitigated failure and pillaging of the public purse. Politicians can see these results as plain as we can. Yet still it goes on without taking a backward step, look at the East coast franchise when it collapsed.

    If this was happening in Italy our media would find it hilarious, they'd happily call it outright corruption, the elite looking after their own with public funds.

  21. Anne

    Had a look at compassion thread. Ugh!

    I get the impression that the MaMs of the world would prefer not to know about the pain and suffering of others. They either ignore it or deny it happens. They cannot - do not want to - see that we all, including the millions of Mams have a responsibility for both the fact that cruelty exists and a collective obligation to help eradicate it.

    Love has become a nasty word - social and communal caring is diminishing. Easier to say 'it isn't happening to me therefore it happens to no-one'. I wonder just what damaged Mam in his formative years that left him unable to face the idea of suffering? These people either have no compassioate imagination or prefer to obliterate the truth.

    I'm not a millionaire but I know that such people exist just as I know that some people starve to death

  22. Jay,

    I found Adam Curtis' ''The Trap'' particularly enlightening on the marketisation of public services.


    Love has become a nasty word - social and communal caring is diminishing. Easier to say 'it isn't happening to me therefore it happens to no-one'. I wonder just what damaged Mam in his formative years that left him unable to face the idea of suffering? These people either have no compassioate imagination or prefer to obliterate the truth.

    The underlying thesis for many commentators on CiF is that love, compassion and caring is for wimps and weaklings.

    What they don't realise is the capacity for compassion and caring for your fellow man takes a lot more courage than cynical nihilism ever will.

    They are the weak ones.

  23. RE colds: Olive Leaf Extract as soon as you think you're starting one. Brilliant stuff. And then my mum tells me (in Arabic) "Yeah whatever, we used to boil the leaves back in the village and drink the liquid."

    Alisdair. I share your pain re CIF. Thanks for blowing up as I have no energy

    On another more testing note: Local charity bookshop has asked "What are your saddest/depressing books?")

    Someone nominated Under the Volcano.

    I would put in Carson McCullers The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Ford Madox Ford The Good Soldier and a host of others but I'll get the discussio going

  24. ah, damnit, i've just been drawn into posting a half-assed and cold-laden dissection of bnp economic 'policy' on the Bethell thread. that may not be the best idea i've ever had...

  25. That a book presumably, Duke? I'm reading Keeping the Aspidistra Flying at the minute, very good.

  26. Jay,

    It was a BBC2 3 part documentary. I know you're probably at work but bookmark the links below and watch at your leisure, I can't commend it highly enough:

    Part 1- F*ck you buddy

    Part 2- The lonely robot

    Part 3- We will force you to be free

    Ms Robinson.

    Wuthering Heights is more gothic than a Fields of the Nephilim concert (supported by Bauhaus) in a medieval German Cathedral.

    I had to do Tess of the D'urbervilles for my Scottish Higher English and I found that to be relentlessly bleak. It should have come with a free packet of prozac or something.

  27. Sad book ? The wind from the Plains (Kemal)

    Geoffrey Alderman is back. He claimed he was sacked - confirmed by Seaton. Hmm!

  28. 13thDuke I too had to study Tess in final year of high school. I've still go the book(with annotations) I wanted to slash my wrists. And we had Ivan Denisovich too but that didn't worry me so much.

  29. Ha ha Philibee that made me giggle. Wybourne, old fellow, they do wear me out.

  30. Don't read the asylum thread. Just don't. Comments are so depressing.

  31. Kiz's post was surprising I didn't think was as bad as that... Cath too.

    bru's post was actually better even it was in a 'lady bountiful' way.

    I'm shocked at Kiz and Cath actually, shows how much suspicion and cynicism has taken hold. We are not allowed to respond emotionally to another's pain any more apparently.

  32. Some truly excellent, if depressing, posts at the end of yesterday's thread and in today's.

    Philippa has infected me; worked from home today. Am trying to work up the energy to go to pub in an hour or so. Rugby isn't on until 8 so it could be a long night!

  33. Ms Robinson - which thread was that? (author would help!)

  34. Annetan - which thread are you talking bout?

  35. Good god, a lot of the comments on the Compassion article are truly shocking. Perhaps it's the suggestion that a little altruism goes a long way, the self-denial to care for others, that has touched a nerve?

  36. MsRobinson: "If someone painted a sign above a big, red button, saying "Do Not Push, Or Else World Ends", the paint wouldn't dry before someone pushed it." (Terry Pratchett, misquoted from memory)

  37. Thought I'd try to go in to work today, but was out of breath before I ever walked out the door, so here I am. As long as I'm fairly sedentary, my breathing's not too bad, but as soon as I start trying to do stuff, I get winded.

    Just read that compassion piece. Has Kiz completely lost the fucking plot? Her comments are every bit as insensitive and ignorant as MAM's and Thylacosmilus's.

    My criticism is of the writing... which is dreadful and also the jungian psychobabble.

    Guess what, Kizzy -- you aren't a literary critic and you sure as hell aren't Dorothy Parker.

    And how the hell hard is it to understand that, just because an article lauds someone for being able to rise out of their circumstances, it does not follow that the article carries with it an unspoken condemnation of anyone who fails to do the same?

    Unfuckingbelievable. (And that goes for Cath Elliott, too.)

  38. So Camila B's prose style isn't to some's liking. can't say it does much for me either, but, and this is the fucking hugest of huge buts, that's not the fucking point,is it? The whole point is about decency,humanity,compassion,resilience and recovery. If you want to chuck all of that aside for some snarky,half-arsed literary criticism then you've got your priorities all wrong

  39. Hi gang, sorry to butt in, but i'm listening to a Hungarian radio on which someone is speaking of links between the BNP and an organisation named Jobbik Britannia. the Jobbik are the Hungarian Neo-nazis.

  40. Read it, pretty nonplussed i must admit. Its a nice story, it is written in slightly grating prose (though the author seems well intentioned), "tragedy porn" and its consumption is a real issue (not really in this article though i dont think), sales of "misery lit" have gone through the roof. And there are issues with the "virtue through hardship" narrative, which a number of posters mentioned.

    Just seems like any other CIF debate, a number of plausible arguments and views and the odd tosser like MAM. Dont really see why its caused such tension.

  41. Was Dickens writing tragedy porn? Not that I'm putting the Batmanghelidjh piece on par with Dickens, but I think there's a comparison to be made.

    And I don't think the author had the slightest intention of giving the message that people gain virtue through hardship. I think she was pointing out that it is possible for children in those circumstances to come out of it with their decency and compassion intact.

    I'm with Alisdair -- if you read that story and find yourself more concerned with its literary merits than the issues it raises, your priorities are seriously fucked up.

  42. afternoon all

    Had a look at Camilla B's piece and agree. Decided to stay well away. I see mam is surpassing even his usually unpleasant self. I doubt whether any of the naysayers have spent even 5 minutes anywhere near the kind of work CB does (which is brilliant and she's been doing it for years) so to criticize her for her rather romantic style seems a a bit harsh as you say.

    You do have to ask yourself how the parents of all these tragic children have ended up becoming such useless specimens too - I imagine that many of them were unloved, neglected and brutalised small children at one point - but just didn't have the capacity/resilience, whatever it is, to survive as a 'decent' human being in the way Julie apparently has.

  43. Medve - interesting - turds of a feather cock together and all that.

    sideline - on their website they have a bit about a recent 'event' in London, including this dig:
    (N.B.: Nothing British, is an organization which says it campaigns against political extremism. This is plainly false: as it has so far refused to condemn the alliance between Ján Slota’s Slovak National Party and UKIP, Britain’s 3rd most popular political party. Hungarians will know that Mr Slota frequently states that he wishes to violently complete the ethnic cleansing of Magyars from modern Slovakia.)
    Have UKIP also been making unfortunate friends? Or is this a load of baloney - presume it's about EP groupings...

  44. Sheff - for christ's sake don't go near the Mawson thread - topic is female asylum seekers and the particular issues they face under DFT. You can probably guess the rest.

  45. Thanks for the warning Phillipa - was thinking I might have a look - won't now as would like to retain what's left of my sanity.

  46. If compassion had a BSI measurement, it'd be into minus figures...

  47. Never mind vitriolic criticism of Ms Batmanghelidjh's compassionate prose - more important things are afoot. I note that there's now an open thread on Cif about tea! Controversy has been raging on the 'What do you want to talk about?' thread in recent days over the correct way to prepare tea. No prizes for guessing which waddya giant intellects will turn up there (and which Guardian staff will get down wid da kidz). Does this warm, fuzzy, luvvie bollocks never get old on Cif? Do they have to keep repeating it ad nauseum? Pass the fucking sick-bucket, Alice.

  48. and pluck appears to have gone - can't recommend anything, can only be a matter of minutes before posting becomes impossible as well...

    i may be partially responsible for the tea thread, after funnin' on waddya. i don't even like tea. vile stuff.

    anyway - am considering whether or not i feel strong enough to cope with watching wales v france in an english pub in france. probably not, but there's no drink in the house, so i'd have to go out again anyway...

  49. Advertisements on my Cif tea page:
    In Danish - breadmaking machine (£160!), coffee-grinder, hand-held vacuum cleaner, food blender.
    In English - turkey roasting kit, three-piece knife set, 10% discount wine, two cookery books, and a wine book. And.... check your BMI.

    And I thought the Guardian were just being nice to their loyal commenters. I feel so ...........used.

  50. Nice post over there, Montana.

    And Duke's post on that thread too.

    If you're all searching for a bit of compassion, have a look at the thread on the sports blog about Wayne Bridge's decision not to play for England again. I know the demographic BTL might be expected to be a bit different to that on Cif but it's pretty depressing nonetheless.

  51. scherf - I get:
    UK Pension? Qrops Facts -
    Expatriates Can Move Your Pension Offshore. Free Guide & Analysis!

    Genuine Japanese Tea Ware
    We are proud of Quality and Value. Teas direct from our farm in Kyoto.


    Spread Betting - Try Now!

    Really can't work out the last one...

  52. Montana

    Its an interesting debate, for me. Your point to Cath i completely agree with, about dogs (in your example). Its the same mentality you can see everywhere these days, celebration of achievement or indeed any normative outcome must be stamped down on lest anyone feel second best.

    I also agree with Kiz's point,

    "Can people only react and empathise if they 'feel' the emotional tug of a story?"

    I dont like this sort of moral obligation that creeps in sometimes that tells us we have to react in a certain emotional way to a piece or we're some sort of fucked up animal. You see death, famine and war every day in the news, you cant well up every time you open a paper.

    Anyways, i got essay to submit tonight so need to crack on. Have a good weekend all.

  53. Philippa: A consequence of the Slovakian Language Law is this possible scenario:

    A pregnant Hungarian woman goes into labour prematurely in Bratislava. If the midwife who is helping her deliver her premature baby happens to be an ethnic Hungarian, she is not allowed to comfort the mother-to-be in Hungarian. The midwife cannot be penalised if she does use the Hungarian language, but her employer can be fined €5000.

    And as for the patchwork of extreme right, that is indeed very complicated. Perhaps not so crafty of the Tories that they are hobnobbing with Latvia's junior SS boy and the like in the European Parliament.

  54. Evening all

    Just saw the compassion thread. Truly stunning responses from some people, and not the usual suspects either. Sigh.

    Jobbik has set up in the UK, medve. Bizarre. They operate out of a pub in Camden, it seems. WTF is a Hungarian fash organisation doing with a satellite here? Scary.

  55. Montana

    "I'm with Alisdair -- if you read that story and find yourself more concerned with its literary merits than the issues it raises, your priorities are seriously fucked up."

    I know. Weird.

  56. Jay - I thought kizbot's point about "emotional tug" was a reasonable one too, but the problem with the discussion on that thread is that too many posters are placing style over substance.

    MAM set the tone, of course, because he has an agenda. why the fuck others need to fall into his trap is a mystery to me.

    Do we ignore the content of every blog on Cif now in favour of a literary analysis of it?

    Part of the problem is that some posters feel they have to express an opinion on just about every blog, whether they've got any knowledge of the subject or not, or anything constructive to say.

    When they have nothing of value to add, they just make some snide remark which contributes little to the sum of human understanding.

    Their time would be better spent doing the job they're paid for.

  57. BB: The radio programme i was listening to was investigating signs that the Jobbik may have been getting financial support from Lybia or even Iran. Apparently there is a South-Asian press bureau in London that has been putting out all the Jobbik's press releases for ages, but has now stopped that. Will look into it.

  58. Hank: Their time would be better spent doing the job they're paid for.

    Second that. I am on record calling similar people "frustos wasting bandwidth".

  59. The thing is, if you're trying to appeal to your readers' emotions, you're going to use emotive language. If it is a subject about which you have passionate feelings (as I'm guessing is the case for Batmanghelidjh), there is every danger that the language you use will be a bit OTT. I'm not arguing that the piece is pitch-perfect. And I don't think I'm saying that everyone has to react a certain way or they're some sort of monster.

    I'm only saying that, if you can read a story such as that and be more concerned with the literary merit of the piece than you are with the subject at hand, you have some seriously messed up priorities.

  60. (Procrastination break)


    We dont usually worry about the literary style too much, no, I personally would never have bothered commenting on that piece full stop, i dont see anything to argue with and little to add. I dont think the style comments are really worthwhile on that piece considering its context but the content ones are at least worthy of debate, there are some serious points being made.

    The whole thread got off to a very bad start, yes (MaMs ridiculous opener), and its a pretty ugly job throughout, but on another day it might have been interesting.

    I know what you mean about posting by habit, i try and avoid it, havent posted much this week at all, but what does annoy me is when i find i havent commented on a piece i really like because i've got nothing to add, and nothing i want to criticise or oppose, because it means they dont get the "hits"/comment count they deserve. We then complain that the editors like the provocative tripe - maybe thats one of the reasons. People comment on the shit ones more because they want to argue against them.

    Must attempt work now, cartesian dualism... (rugby at 8.... UT... CIF... cigarettes... so many worthy distractions...)

  61. Sheff

    Was it you talking about the series North Square the other day? I can't remember... but anyway, just found the whole series on demand on Virgin cable. Oh joy! :o)

  62. right - off to provide moral support to a drunken welshman. wish me luck.

  63. sorry @annetan I was out for a freezing walk! It was Andrew Mawson's article which was neither here not there in substance but received a big Daily Mail type response.

    As for Camila's article well I found it neither here nor there. Sure it was badly written but the key point for me was that it seemed to have no major point for debate...so I kept out. I would hazard a guess that perhaps because of that some people didn't know what to say as it was not really a discussion piece but one of Camila's case studies. I am not sure where we were going with it.

    Anyway there was no point going in. As for Tragedy Porn no it wasn't even near the level of some of the execrable misery memoirs out there.

  64. @Jay Reilly I'm with you on moral obligation- to feel the same as everyone else at the same time.

  65. @MsR - yeh, agree with you and Jay on that, but don't we all have our own set of universal values?

  66. Fuck me, it's quiet on here tonight. Am I the only UT-er who doesn't follow the rugger?

  67. Hank

    Looks like you and me and the music again (when one of us has found a tune, that is).

    CiF is doing my head in. Just seen that AllyF had lost his big blue C.

  68. No Hank, once they play the French National Anthem (I just love it)it's over for me. I am reading Private Eye and eating peanut butter toast accompanied by wine. But hey, that's the wild kind of chick I am.

  69. People, CIF is eating itself. I used to actually think about stuff people wrote: now there is nothing to think about.

  70. I was about to suggest making butter but then I thought of Last Tango in Paris. I'll get my coat...

  71. Cummon folks - I need some comfort -- please.

    tell me that the miserable, self centred posters on Cif are not representative of the people of The Isles of the Mighty.

    Cif hase become some kind of a vortex which pulls them in towards a dark and fightening centre.

  72. Leni

    Maybe we'll wake up and find that it was just a dream, and wake up in the shower, Dallas/Dynasty (?) style.

    Or maybe we could organise a butter-making party?

  73. Erm, my brain & fingers are somewhat disconnected at the mo it would seem.

  74. MsChin

    A butter making party sounds great - bring you own cow.
    I imagine the shaking - or churning I suppose if you are part of consumer society - is quite therapeutic especially when followed by some friendly patting.

    I don't usually read 'life style' things. They make me feel inadequate as they bear no resemblance to my life or interests. Who doe live like that? Who pays 80 pounds plus for a teeshirt/

    I.m catching up on Games Theory at the momment - it's raising a myriad ugly heads in all sorts of odd places. I'm trying to make some sense of an increasigly confusing world.

  75. Ally's lost his "C"? Why? He's posted some great stuff the last couple of weeks, very off message. Guess that's the answer.

    I'm actually enjoying Cif tonight. The Farage blog is a blast, and Will Hutton's taking a couple of bullets.

    Anyway, if it's my turn to play a song, and I'm pretty damn sure I put money in the jukebox last time, but still...


  76. I love the Stone Roses. But given events in my life How Do You Sleep is my current pick.

  77. Hank

    I know it's my turn to spin a choon, but my brain's addled 'cos I'm poorly :(

    I believe Ally got all sweary somewhere & used the c word.


    Can't bear lifestyle things either. In fact when you talk to real people, lots of us can't bear lifestyle crap as it's just so irrelevant. Sick of being preached at from every angle about health, home etc - don't do this, do that. Flipping boring as hell.

    Who'd buy an £80 T shirt? Any one of my offspring, probably!

  78. Speaking of getting a cow in order to make butter... I am ashamed to say that it wasn't until my son was about 8 that he realised that cheese didn't come straight out of the cow the way it is...

    Now it had never occurred to me to explain the cheese-making process to him, seeing as how he has been at school since the age of 4 and I expected that they might actually teach him something useful after I had taught him to read and his dad had taught him basic numbers. More fool me.

    It was really funny how we made the realisation, though. We were on holiday in France and watching a programme about cheese production where he saw this huge wheel of emmental and looked at me and said "But how does that come out of the cow?" then blushed terribly when he saw the look on my face. It was quite a blast though - my husband then went on to tell him that each teat had a different flavour in it, like primula, but if you wanted a really hard cheese you had to chase the cow round the field a few times first...

  79. @BB I don't think this lack of knowledge is uncommon:) My stepniece saw my sister cutting spuds up and asked why.

    "Making chips," was the reply.

    "OH, is that where chips come from."

  80. Thanks for that Hank - had missed the Farage thread.

    Stone Roses - Manchester? Have to admit to total ignorance of lots of modern music - and films. I listen and watch but very few stick with me.

    BB Lovely story. Never assume anything about education system I doubt if some of the teachers know where milk comes from.

  81. @mschin - Ally lost his C cos he used the C word? Seriously? And yet Geoffrey Alderman got banned, and Seaton confirmed on waddya that he wouldn't be back either above or below the line, and, lo and behold, he's got a blog on Cif today...?

    Gotta be honest, I cannot understand how the C word is not used in pretty much every post on Cif.

    And I fucking hate wankers who use the C word.

  82. Hank that was such good music. Many may not like this one, but I do.

  83. So who pressured Seaton on Alderman?

  84. hank

    Seriously, says he "got naughty stepped for a mildly intemperate remark to Cath" for which he apologised. I assume on the Camila B compassion thread.

  85. Ms R and Leni - it is still kind of weird though. I can't remember how I knew where cheese came from, but I am pretty sure I knew before I was 8!!

    MsC and Hank - naughty step is one thing, but de-C'ing him is kind of harsh.

  86. Leni - I made a snarky comment on there. Didn't realise the back-history, as it were.

    I loathe Alderman ever since he did the "dialogue" with a rabbi during Cast Lead where he was suggesting that it would be ok to kill Palestinian children as they would grow up to be enemies. Made me sick to my stomach.

  87. "A mildly intemperate remark". Ha ha! Come on, AllyF you know where you're welcome.

  88. Hmm the AllyF thing is odd. Ally loses his C for intemperate language - Alderman retains his after engaging in a racist, bigotted rant - and blogs against Cif on another site. All Seatons emails were published as was his response to Aldermans 'j'accuse' bit on JC online.

    Pressure from above I suspect.

  89. BB - The rodef thing from Alderman had quite deep roots. Time of Cast Lead a settler Rabbi published something called 'The Kin'g Torah' - supposedly giving God's view on this. Was circulated to IDF. Very nasty.

    Alderman outraged some Jews here - one thing from lunatoc fringe who can be dismissed as religious extremists another from British Prof. who may be seen as representing modern Judaism. GA should have been sacked then - Seaton defended him.

  90. King's Torah - looks Chinese as I wrote it.

  91. "De-C'ing him is kind of harsh."

    You're such an elitist snob, BBC!

    Leni - I didn't know about Alderman ranting on another site. Sounds like a waddya post would be in order. Go for it. I fucking hate Alderman, the unt.

  92. Oi Scorpio!

    That BBC sounds too much like OBeaE!

    Cheeky bugger.

    There is a whole whiney bit on Cifwatch from Alderman about the graun thing.

    That site leaves me feeling slightly queasy though. Especially the article about me on there by AKUS and the nasty comments afterwards.

  93. Evening all,

    been on the pop since 5 and feeling in an advanced state of refreshment but I'll try and make sense (begging the question, have I ever?).

    I agree with Jay, Hank and Medve on less is more. And I'm certainly posting less on CiF. The last few months I feel I'm posting round and round and round in circles.

    The compassion thread is one I would never normally post on, but MaM and thylocasilmus' (or whatever) posts were so fucking narrow minded and moronic I jumped in. With MaM I know it's a lesson in complete futility but there you go.

    However, as mentioned above some of the posts below were breathtaking. Especially the fact that criticism of the writers style somehow in their eyes takes away from the fact the woman has worked her arse off in an emotionally demanding role and has a decent (if badly written) story to tell.

    I saw Ally's naughty post. He accused Cath of not being afraid to launch into tragedy porn in her articles, something which she accused the writer of in her first post.

  94. If Ally F has had his blue-C taken from him, I can only believe it's because he is saying the right things. Hope you guy's who possess the magic C on the UT throw them back in the eyes of those who can't stand the heat.

  95. BB,

    your getting dissed by cifwatch? I had a look at that place once. Wear that badge with pride.

    I don't know if any of you have seen this Heineken advert but it's the funniest ad I've seen in a long time.

  96. Thought about it earlier. Will try to find links.

    Alderman wrote for Cif watch - accusing Cif of antisemitism - This picked up by Jewish Chronicle and then J Hoffman weighed in (deputy chair of BZF). Big row all round. I think Mel had a go as well. Got nasty - Seaton given right of reply on JC. GA claimed he was given ultimatum - stop writing for Cifwatch or get the boot from Cif !!

  97. Taking myself off to bed now, so night folks.

  98. @navro - if you check back through the UT archives, Ally used to post on here. Before he got his "C".

    When he was keepin it real (-;

    At the same time as arguing about shoes, Jaffa cakes and tax avoidance for materialist airhead expats.

    Flippin 'eck, it's been a long 12 months on here.

  99. I had a bit of a funny do on Cifwatch. Posted there a few times and was put in premod. It is an insecure site and often names were highjacked.

    Have a friend who posts mainly on Jewish sites but reads Cif &CW. After I was premodded he posted asking why - used another name but posted from my computer while staying here. He left window open.
    After he'd gone I read the thread - posted to say I had notposted the complaint - didn't know who did. Site owner replied saying I was a liar as post was from my IP. Asked S which email he used - said he simply made it up - completely ficticious.

    i am disgraced.

  100. I think losing the blue "c" is a temporary side-effect of being in pre-mod, isn't it? I think it happened to someone else once, though I can't remember who. Pre-mod ends, the blue "c" comes back, I think.

  101. Hank@- I know he used to post here'back in the day'. Never took much notice if he was a BIG 'c' ciffer or not. My point was that he hasn't, and by the way you've seem'd to have noticed too, been singing from the usual choir sheet; he's gone off on one. And he seem's to have been punished for it.

  102. Leni - the Nigel Farage/UKIP thread....ask timken whether he's an anti-semite. Or, failing that, if UKIP has a policy on anti-semitism? Or if he agrees with Breaking 3 that David Miliand should be treated as a foreigner because his dad was Jewish?

  103. @navro - couldn't agree more. Don't understand it unless it was the grief he gave Jenni Russell on her blog yesterday about Rawnsley. If so, fair play to him.

  104. Yeah Hank, like you didn't give her some shit:-)

  105. @navro - read what I said. Fair play to ally if he gave Jenni some shit for playing the corporate game.

    If anyone else gave Jenni some shit, I'm sure they were just "Friends of Ally". "Ally's Allies".

    What's your game anyway, navro? Corporate spy?

  106. Corporate spy? oh thanks Hank. Am I fuck a spy. Just luv this site.And!!! the people on it. Just a bit of a dweeb.

  107. Hello Navro

    We haven't met before.
    What is a dweeb?

  108. Go on then, navro, who are you? Pretty sure I (Hank) didn't give Jenni Russell any shit so what's your point? You remember this site from back in the day too...

    You're monitoring this site closely and notice who sings from the same "choir sheet" but you're just a dweeb, yeh?

  109. Leni

    I guess I'd say a dweeb is someone in 'their own world.'

    Or an ignorant twat.

  110. Hank I'm not monitoring anything. Really!!

    You're not secretly a Tory are you? Fess up if you want are. I won't tell anyone.

  111. Yeh, navro, I'm secretly a Tory. My codename is Kiz.

  112. PikeBishop. Wasn't that one of the things he got miffed about when he left Cif? His blue 'c' disappeared when he was put in pre-mod and he thought they'd taken it away from him for good.

  113. Anyone still awake?

    Evening, if so. Hello. Thought I would drop by and say a drunken, stoned hello, now I've finally officially joined the ranks of The Untrusted.

    Turns out my ears were burning. ;-)

    Really pleased to read the reactions to the Compassion thread here. That was what got me naughty-stepped (or that was the final straw, anyway).

    I lost my rag at Cath after she backed MaM, and swore at her. Not in an especially hostile way, but it was a wee bit out of order and I apologised a few minutes later. But the post got deleted and I was pre-modded.

    But actually I think it was one more for the camel's back. I've been in a bit of a sweary mood this week. I politely asked Tim Montgomerie to fuck off, which was the least he deserved. Oh, and I asked Peter Hain if there was any chance of seeing any fucking policies. There wasn't.

    Basically, quite a few of the fucking fuckers have been fucking me off this fucking week, and I've made it fucking known.

    I think I might have made the mods a bit twitchy.

    Frankly I don't blame them much. They've got an illusion to maintain. I just think it's a bit funny, if not downright ridiculous. They'll get bored of having to read my posts soon enough, and frankly I don't really care enough to feel like they have any power over me.

    Fuck 'em.

  114. of course, you're all bloody awake!

  115. Hank Hank

    Now I have a vision of you with a blue rinse and floppy hat - with footballer's legs. Spoiled the illusion.

  116. Incidentally, I was quite gentle with Jenni. She was nowt to do with it, I'm sure.

  117. @Montana So all this huff and puff has been for nothing?

    Doves anyone?

  118. Class

  119. Hey Ally! Nice to see you here. I think I saw your first comment to Cath and don't recall it seeming all that bad. Oh, well. We've long known that the mods work in mysterious ways. That thread was just scary to me for the things people were getting hung up on -- and the people that it was getting hung up on them.

    @navro -- if you mean the huffing & puffing about Ally's blue 'c' -- yes. I think it's for nothing. I'd bet my Aunt Jane's hair net that he'll get it back as soon as he's out of pre-mod.

  120. Fuck me, you wander back in here after how long and expect to get a sympathetic fucking welcome, you ginger Scottish bastard?!

    Talk about a sense of entitlement.

    Fuck off.

    Funny thing is that I've been enjoying your comments a fuck of a lot more the last few weeks, so welcome home Ally x

  121. Not looked, but can Ally post without his 'C'? What I mean is, is his blue 'C' in pre-mod or is Ally in pre-mod?

  122. Christ's arse. No-one will ever ask that question again.

  123. Genuinely though, good to see you back here, Ally.

  124. @Leni - flipping eck, are you suggesting that Kiz has a blue rinse and footballers' legs?


    Not sure whether you've checked the UT photo gallery but I have made a cameo appearance there. Sheff has the negatives.

  125. The anti Europeans are controlling the soap box on Farage thread.

    Hank - i will look for your pic. I love the 3 piggies, especially the one on the far Right.

    Hi Ally.

    Night night everyone.

  126. Leni - I'm definitely not the pig on the far Right. Pretty sure that's MAM.