Thursday, 8 January 2009

Thursday 08/01/09

I hear there’s a run on incandescent light bulbs as manufacturers stop selling them in order to persuade us to purchase low energy bulbs. You know the ones – they’re inexplicably twice the price of ordinary light bulbs. I don’t know about you, but for me the glow of a low energy bulb has all the warmth and cosiness of an icicle bathed in blue neon light. They also seem to take about 5 minutes to reach operating luminosity.

American-English seems to be pervading every sphere of our lives. I’m horrified by the number of instances of the word ‘math’ appearing in articles written by English people – for example, “If my math is correct, then …...” The correct word is ‘maths’, being short for mathematics – derived from the Latin neuter plural. It’s like shortening statistics to stat instead of stats, Dianetics to Diane instead of Dianes, gerontotheraputics to gerontoth instead of gerontoths and spastics to spa instead of spas. Just doesn’t make sense.

Still going strong with the e-cigar. Haven’t purchased any new supplies of e-liquid or cartridges since before Xmas and still have enough supplies for a month or more. I reckon it’s costing me no more than about 20 quid a month, if that – and I was classed as an Olympic standard smoker with a £300 plus a month baccy habit.

With regard to the frozen pipes in the caravan – they didn’t defrost at all yesterday. We’ve determined that the problem lies either where the water pipe surfaces from underground, being the point furthest from the heat radiating from the caravan, or more likely where it enters the ground by the garage. Hopefully some additional lagging should cure the problem, but we won’t be able to tell until a) the pipes defrost, and b) when we have another equally cold night. There is the possibility, however, that we’ve managed to discover the UK’s first example of permafrost.

The Big brother phenomenon. Beyond an odd 5 minutes when it first hit our screens, I’ve never watched this programme and I think I know why.

Having done some basic research I have discovered that there are currently 11 people appearing in the programme. Whether 11 was the original number I can’t say, nor am I interested. Anyway, of those 11 only 3 are faces or names that I recognise reasonably well; La Toyota Jackson because her pickup trucks are used by the Taliban, Ulrika Jonsson because she was a member of The Weather Girls pop group (although I don’t know why or how she suddenly became white – possibly the same syndrome that affected Michael Jackson) and appears to have slept with just about everyone in the football world, and Terry Christian because he’s a bit gobby, has a distinctive northern whine and appeared on The Word in the early ‘90s. I’m actually horrified to find Terry Christian is 48. I thought the bugger was only in his late 30s.

Coolio is a name that sparks a vague memory, purely because of a song I remembered from way back – but I’m not that familiar with his oeuvre (or even his ors). The rest are nonentities and I haven’t the faintest idea as to their claim to fame.

Could the reason for my disinterest be due to the fact that the vast majority of these so-called celebrities are completely irrelevant to me? They seem to be people trying to make a come-back after never really having been ‘there’ in the first place? Why on earth do politicians vie to get on this programme? If any politician trying to get my vote appeared on Big Brother, that alone would guarantee me voting for the other side.

I have to admit that if Big Brother brought together some real heavyweights, like The Two Jeremys (Paxman and Clarkson), Stephen Hawking, the Pope, Robert Plant, the Tarka Dahl Llama, Vlad Putin, the Archbish of Cadbury, Jonathan Miller, Richard Dawkins and Paul Merton, then I would be riveted to the screen and a brace of wild glamour models wouldn’t drag me away. However, I doubt they’d be willing to despoil and humiliate themselves in this manner. The main problem would be that Hawking would lose some of his famous conversational spontaneity. I suppose he could use a stunt voice double – say for example Davros, the leader of the Daleks.

Anyone remember the famous Punch cartoon of the Daleks at the foot of a flight of stairs with the caption reading, “Well, that certainly buggers our plans for dominating the Universe.” I do believe they can fly now. As a kid I used to have nightmares of being sink plungered to death by a Dalek.

Here’s a thought; is Doctor Who currently targeted at the same age group as that at which it was originally aimed, or is it aimed at the original audience? – i.e. those of us who were kids in the ‘60s. When you think of the plots, they are quite adult in orientation and not that easily understood by those in the traditional target age group. Perhaps the reason the new Doctor is just a child is in order to reclaim the programme for the original target age group.

Going back to Big Brother, Hay’s House Team would comprise Richard Dawkins, Jonathan Miller, Marilyn Manson, Jonathan Meades, Rod Liddle, Matthew Collings, Chris Morris and Jodie Marsh. Not knowing who she is I queried Jodie Marsh. Hay informed me that she’s a glamour model for whom she has enormous respect due to her total dedication to what she does.

There’s a report from the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas that there are MP3s being exhibited which can project a video onto your wall. That presupposes that paint manufacturers are going to have to start selling High Definition vinyl or emulsion paint, just so you can get a sharper image. Bit of a bugger if your house is decorated with wallpaper.

I’m thinking of introducing the concept of a guest writer once a week. Anyone willing to have a go? Full credit will be given.


Anonymous said...

CB re your frozen pipes and use of a Calor gas heater reminds me of a time when I used a Calor gas Super Ser heater in a very cold house in winter, I found that the heater produced a phenominal amout of condensation on the lower 18 inches of the walls of any room it was used in, I mean they were soaking wet so I had to stop using it. Someone at the time told me that for every gallon of gas used the heater could produce three gallons of water, how that works I don't know. the damn things are dangerous anyway unless used in a very well ventilated environment, you or Hay could end up going to sleep permanently lad and I don't think you would like that, I would certainly miss your daily muse lad, gives me a chuckle usually :-)


Chairman Bill said...

Mike - fear not. It's a built-in mobile home gas fire with an external flue, not a stand alone jobbie.

You're correct though about the condensation. The wood burner produces a dry heat with much less condensation.


robthedog said...

Well so far I’m impressed with the e-ciggies, been using them for about three weeks now with only a couple of relapses, the first when I got down to the nicotine free samples in the starter pack, and then someone bought me a pack of 10 hamlet miniatures for Christmas which needed smoking so as not to appear ungrateful!

Had a bit of a panic when I received my second order because I’d ordered a second e-cigarette and cartridges but it turned out that I’d ordered a super cig and super cig cartridges rather than the mini, and the charger was different and didn’t fit. So after several failed attempts bodging the charger with bits of wire and assorted items from me garage resorted to transferring the liquid and spongy thing into used cartridges whilst waiting for a charger and some more cartridges.

Still getting used to the funny looks on the train… and the missus wouldn’t let me “smoke” in the cinema because she said you can see the smoke (didn’t stop me when she wasn’t looking though).

Chairman Bill said...


Glad to hear of your success.

My current cartridge has lasted nearly 2 weeks (with frequent topping up with e-liquid). still got about 30 virgin cartridges left, so I'm doing extremely well.

Keep the faith.