Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Shocked and appalled

I just read this. I'm just so shocked and appalled at the level of mysogyny and lack of restraint some men show to women. It makes me want to stop blogging and have nothing to do with the Blogosphere, it's a salutary lesson in the dangers of blogging. I hope this explains why I don't stray into areas of my life that reveal more about me than I'm comfortable with and to regular readers: I thank you from the bottom of my heart that you continue to come back and read my thoughts, even though I'm not giving out the full details of places and names.

What colour is yours?

My wife's anniversary present for me this year was a Ninentendo DS Lite, a truly wonderful present. It came with the game Bomberman, which is one of those maddening addictive games that transcends generations. I've never played the game before but I love it. The DS Lite makes my existing Game Boy Advance games look great too, the backlit screen is such a massive improvement over my old unlit screen. So I now have my first new game console since I bought my PS2 at the beginning of 2005. I was looking at the PSP and considering it but I'm so glad I went with the DS Lite, there are so many really good GBA games that I can play on it. Backwards compatibility was something I went for on my PS2. Over time, you grow out of the older games and move on and the double screen, touch screen, microphone input and wifi mean that the DS is going to be a console I keep well into the future. My wife and I are already discussing buying the baby pink version for my daughter for her birthday: the really fun part is called Pictochat where you can chat with friends by both typing and drawing pictures and sending them to each other. Also, you can play games wirelessly with friends - Bomberman allows up to 8 people to play with just one game cartridge! A terrific gift. Now I have to match it, which won't be easy.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Wriggler

I went shopping with my son at the weekend and we ended up in Hawkins Bazaar, which is a shop I love because it has toys that remind me of my childhood. There are loads of little things that are very cheap, which is another reason I love taking the kids there because it's one toyshop that includes toys that require imagination. I ended up buying a few small items, one of which happens to be my daughter's new pet Melissa - see the Magic Wriggler picture above. It's just a bit of fluff and a strand of nylon but it's great fun to watch kids marvel at it in the playground. I remember really really wanting one of these as a child and I was so happy that after begging for one for days that my mom finally got me one. I think I played with it for a few hours after that and then got bored as kids do. I'm sure it was called something different to Magic Wriggler when I was a kid but I can't remember what it was.

I have to also mention the weather here. I cannot believe the weather in just one day:- it's got really cold and it changes from being sunny and bright to dark and pelting snow in what seems like an instant. Most odd. I have got to travel tomorrow and I don't think I'll have much time for checking up on the Blogosphere until the weekend unfortunately. Have a fun week though, whatever you get up to.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Losing Stuff You Never Meant To

Tara's blog post inspired this.

Every year for certain things, like car tax for example, you need to be able to bring together different documents: in this case an MOT certificate from a garage, an official form, your cheque and a valid insurance certificate. I have to hand it to my wife for instigating the introduction of "the grey box", which is a filing cabinet system to help organise our stuff. Some documents you have are not necessarily required annually. Documents like examination certificates, birth certificates and passports (we don't leave the UK that much in general) and so I think some stuff has been forgotten and just not made it into the "grey box". The other problem is that the "grey box" was getting rather full and it was getting harder and harder to put stuff into it easily, so she bought a set of drawers. So unfortunately now we have the "grey box" and "the drawers". But that's not all, we also have "the pigeonholes" that are part of our computer desk, my own "daddy's cupboard" which is where I just file stuff (ie. put it in a disorganised pile) and separate "car folders". This organisation crap has got totally out of control in our house and it drives me nuts!!! I can't find anything and the worst is I'll ask about something and even though I've been told where it is I still can't find it. I'll get all angry and hot in my frustration and I'm sure that this actually prevents me finding stuff even when it is under my nose because as soon as my wife looks again (in the same place) she usually finds what I was looking for: arrggghhhh! But what I don't understand is how someone who is as good at organisation as my wife loses her car keys everyday. We have a bowl near to our front door and I make it a habit to always drop my keys into it - I find the jangly clang noise satisfying in a "Honey, I'm home" kind of way even if its just myself in the house. But my wife just seems to drop her keys anywhere and then shouts "Has anyone seen my keys anywhere?" in a mild panic - arrgghhh!!!!!! The sooner they implant chips in us that bring together all this stuff so we can get rid of paper and keys and everything the better. There - that's my rant over with.

Have a simply wonderful weekend everyone :-)

Friday 5

I Got these from here.

1. What do you like most: Fridays, Saturdays, or Sundays (and why)?

I prefer Friday's because I can look forward to the weekend with anticipation all day and really relax Friday evening knowing that I have two days of rest to come.

2. What was the best weekend of your life?

I've had so many good weekends, if I have to choose I'd say the weekend I got married because it was so wonderful and I'll never forget it.

3. What weekend of the year is your favorite?

This is a hard one. I think it would be the first weekend of the year when the weather gets warm and dry enough to stay out in just a T shirt and shorts all day and much of the evening.

4. Do you have any weekend routines?

Absolutely do, involving alcohol during the evenings and possibly takeaway food (though not every weekend), certainly watching a film or two and playing videogames, visiting our library and playing games with my kids. I have boring stuff to do too though, like cutting grass, visiting the dump, doing the weekly shop etc.

5. Describe your ideal Saturday night.

Spending the evenings laughing and talking with friends, listening to some live music, drinking beer, going for an inexpensive but really satisfying meal with friends and falling contentedly asleep with my wife .

Monday, March 12, 2007


The weather over the last few days has been bright but cool. In the car or the house you might think it was warm and Springlike. Outdoors though it is still a little too cold to gad about in T-shirts, not that that stops some people I see. When I see folks wearing just a thin shirt in cold weather I don't know what to think:
  • don't they feel the cold?
  • are they just concerned with the fashion of how they look?
  • maybe they forgot their coat? Or it was stolen?
  • maybe they didn't realise how cold it was, or they just came out of a really hot environment?
It does puzzle me.

It's the time of year when my thoughts turn to the Eurovision Song Contest, an annual TV song competition I've loved and watched since I was a kid. The British entry hasn't been chosen yet, it's being chosen on March 17: contenders include Justin Hawkins (ex-Darkness singer), Brian Harvey (ex-East 17 singer) and Liz McClarnon (Atomic Kitten). Unless I'm mistaken it seems this year that the individual performers in the selection contest are of a higher quality overall than in recent years, I hope this is good news for a good UK position in the competition proper but you never know what's going to happen with Eurovision, that's why I love it.

Thursday, March 08, 2007


Here is the mug my daughter painted for me. It says "I (heart) tea" on it, very true - I do love my tea. The box it came in is behind the mug.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

What's Your Personality Cluster

My phone went off yesterday morning, so I had no internet again for a day and a half. It's back today though.

Your Personality Cluster is Extraverted Intuition

You are:

A true wordsmith - a master of words
Original, spontaneous, and a true inspiration
Highly energetic, up for any challenge
Entertaining and engaging, both to friends and strangers

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Sunday Sunday Ah Ah, Ah Ah Ah Ah

I've enjoyed quite a good weekend. Shame its almost over. On Saturday I picked up my own copy The Sims really cheap, I bought it for my wife a while back and she loves it - her Sims are certainly enjoying the high life. I picked up my copy really cheap and its just the original version but it runs alright on my old PC upstairs, which is what I wanted it for. My Sim house is very humble compared to my wife's, she does enjoy lying on the bed telling me how I should run the world though bless her.
My daughter painted a mug I've had lying around since Christmas yesterday, it was a present to me. It came with some paint and you just paint a picture on the white mug and put it in the oven for half an hour to fix the paint. I'll have to post a picture of her handywork.
Today we went as a family to see a show, a sort of comedy/pantomime show. We went last year. I was dreading it slightly because I sat on an end of aisle seat and there's part where they come into the audience with custard pies and you can guess what happened. The custard is actually shaving cream and while its funny to watch, it is a little bit uncomfortable to sit with the dampness and the smell on your clothes. Well fortunately this year I only got squirted with water! I managed to cover my son with his coat before the water hit him, he cried last year when he got wet but he's older now and even the "baddie" made him laugh out loud - especially when his wig got pulled off. Kids laughter is very infectious.
The last act of the day has been to launch the second series of my podshow, the opening episode is a special longer edition with me talking to a friend who writes songs. Great fun to do, hope you have time to check it out.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Five on a Friday

Five in a Row

1. Name one thing you do everyday.

Drink tea. I'm a tea-aholic, I drink far too much tea but I do love my brew. I especially find it reviving after a shopping trip with my family and I get home, put the TV on and settle down with a cup of tea for 5 minutes peace (not that I ever get my 5 minutes).

2. Name two things you wish you could learn.

I would love to play guitar better than I do. The other thing has to be that I wish I could swim. I know I should take lessons, so I should probably do that. I just feel so stupid that I can't swim at my age.

3. Name three things that remind you of your childhood.

Penknives. I always had a penknife as a kid. I've never owned one as an adult.
Ice lollies. I like nothing more on a hot day than sitting down with a plain orange ice lolly.
The Stranglers. My first crush was the older sister of a boy I used to play with, she wore Stranglers T shirts and wore incredibly tight jeans.

4. Name four things you love to eat but rarely do.

Anything with prawns.
Malayan curry.
Thai food.
Strawberry pavlova.

5. Name five things that make you feel good.

Making love
Watching shoppers file past as I sit with a coffee and a paper in a cafe
Laughing and joking with my kids