Friday, 6 February 2009

Friday 06/02/09

Given my left eye is now fully recovered from the burst blood vessel I was going to replace the Chairman Bill logo above. However I quite like the red-eye effect, so I’ll leave it in place for now and work on another burst blood vessel so I match the logo in all aspects. Will have to do something about the jaundiced Simpsonesque skin colour though.

I deleted my Facebook account yesterday. Most of the friends I have on Facebook know me anyway, so what’s the point? Could I care less that Dominic is walking the hoover, Jessie is eating her poodle or that Fred is chatting up some tart in Florida? In any case, it embarrassed the hell out of my 21 year-old niece who is busy partying while at university somewhere in the northern wastes and had expressed alarm at having to start censoring what she said on Facebook due to her uncle being amongst her friends.

I ask you, how the hell can a 21 year-old girl have 442 ‘friends’? I have about 5 close friends with whom I have the kind of relationship whereby it wouldn’t matter if we didn’t get to speak to each other in 5 years. Add to that say another 20 friends slightly more toward the acquaintance end of the friendship spectrum, and some 200 odd business acquaintances in whose personal lives I have not the slightest interest.

A Christian political party (anathema! – actually that’s a good name for a Christian political party) has taken a leaf from the atheists in that they’ve shelled out £15k to advertise on buses the message that there definitely is a God. They seem to have gotten round the ‘truth in advertising’ problem they complained about in respect of the atheist bus campaign, so I guess we can look forward to the atheists responding by dropping the word ‘probably’ from their adverts and a subsequent round of recriminations.

Thought for the day: what does it take to become a schismatic atheist? Are you a heretic atheist if you deny the existence of God but believe in ghosts?

Got home last night to find the latest bum fodder delivered by our local Jehova’s Witness and occasional doorstop. She’s not a bad old stick, she just happens to believe a load of old tosh that’s about as believable as a political party manifesto, a Christian political party manifesto to boot – miracles for all, higher taxes on the Godless, NHS to provide faith healing!

The latest edition of The Watchtower tells us that the earth is definitely finely tuned by God for the purpose of supporting life – specifically us. In scientific circles this is known as the anthropic principle, or in expert nomenclature - a load of old bollocks. Unfortunately for Jehova’s Wotsits, all of the evidence at our disposal contradicts this belief; in a nonanthropocentric universe there is no need for supernatural entities to explain life as we know it and the anthropic principle seems to reverse known causes and effects. Steven Jay Gould, the eminent palaeontologist and evolutionist, likened the anthropic principe to saying ships were invented to house barnacles, which I think is a neat analogy.

It’s art appreciation time again. This month it’s some Old Dutch Masters and a Velazquez that I’ve updated.

Peter Paul Rubens does know how to draw bums of Olympian proportions, doesn’t he?

Talking of bums; I think I’ve previously mentioned that in August 2009 we’re celebrating my old school’s 150th anniversary by holding a huge reunion at the Adelphi Hotel in Liverpool, hoping to attract some 1,600 old boys from around the world (yes, stay well clear of Liverpool in August). As part of the event we’re trying to recruit an old boy who can still handle a bugle and play reveille and the last post at the grand dinner. There are a few volunteers in their mid to late 50s, but what with the high-fibre diets they’re on as a precaution against bowel cancer, they could suffer what a mate in Birkenhead reliably informs me is colloquially known in St Helens as glassblower’s bum. I don’t think you’ll find reference to it in the British Medical Journal or The Lancet, although cello scrotum and guitar nipple were indeed featured a number of years ago.

Just a wild unconnected thought: have you noticed how when the media uses the words ‘public sector’, they always have to slide the adjective ‘bloated’ in front of it?

Three times this week I’ve had to pull over to allow some idiot driving less than 20 feet behind me in treacherous conditions to pass. White Van Man x 1 and Aggressive Young Woman In MPV x 2. This morning I put a shovel in the car as a precaution against getting stuck – it was a bit touch-and-go on the slopes here yesterday.

Talking of death-wish drivers; the family of two people killed by a 73-year-old driver has called for all over-70s to sit further driving tests. Channon Kevern, 12, and her step-father Terry Stubbs, 29, of Fawley in Hampshire, died on the A326 at Dibden Purlieu near Southampton, on 23 August. Ann Larke was making a U-turn when she hit the pair's motorcycle. In a statement the victims' family said: "Nobody should ever have to bury a child and grandchild. It's the worst possible thing to go through. We believe that every driver over the age of 70 should have to sit a hazard perception test and medical, to prove their competence to drive on our roads.”

Older drivers are not a problem. If they drive a lot of miles a year they are very aware. If they drive a few miles every year, their exposure to the public roads is limited. Statistically drivers between the ages of 50 and 70 are the safest, with those above 70 not too far behind. Apart from the White Van Man, the current problem is Young Professional Man and Woman having earned their first company car and texting or phoning whilst driving. If you’re going to call for the over 70s to have to face constant tests, the stats would logically dictate we simply don’t allow the under 25s anywhere near a car in the first place.
PS - there's a typo in the text for the picture of Charles V / Matt Lucas. That should be 'thought' and not 'though'.


  1. aim,having time of may life,sir,thanks a lot!Long live our chairman will,oups,sorry,Bill!

  2. It's all right - she's completely harmless.

  3. Smug as I was about Brits not knowing a thing about 'real snow', I was the only one of my colleagues to fall right on my ass on the super slick West London pavements. Comeuppance done come right up and slapped me!

    I applaud your shovel carrying, sir.

  4. Michael,,

    I was only reading your blog yesterday about how unprepared we Brits are that maee me think about carrying a spade in the car.

    An eminently sensible precaution.

  5. Sir, you might not know, but malena Sandra is Dutch and is trying very hard with her English, as are we all!

    Hope you are carrying Kendal Mint Cake with you in the car, too, as well as the shovel to hit other motorists with!

  6. Anyone living in Holland has my vote. Especially as I have relatives in Groningen.


  7. PS - I thought Sandra was Eastern European. That's not Dutch on her Blog.

    Sandra - perhaps you can clarify your provenance.


  8. OOh, Bill, you could be right about Aleksandra, but then you are always right, non? The language on A's blog is not Flemish, is it; It was her location that had me all confused, sorry! It doesn't take much, you must know!

    Word verif is recessi - Too close to recession for my likey!

  9. Woman,

    Not Flemish, which is the same as Dutch.

    It looks something like Croatian, or Czech. The accents are the give-away that it's some Slavic language.

  10. Well! Darn glad I could be of some service. Now I have to get back to chortling at your remixed art. Hoot!!!