Friday, 27 February 2009

Friday 27/02/09

Suffering from writer’s block and a humour bypass today.

If Dr Who can go around averting catastrophes that have already happened, or have yet to happen, then why can’t he go back in time to the constellation of Kasterborous and avert the disaster that led to Gallifrey being destroyed in the first place and him ending up as the last Time Lord?

This next item will be lost on anyone not brought up in the UK in the 60s. Wendy Richard’s death yesterday made me look up Mollie Sugden, who acted next to Richard in ‘Are You Being Served’, and whom I thought dead, but was delighted to find to be still alive at the grand old age of 86. I remember Mollie playing the part of Jimmy Clitheroe’s mum in the 1960s TV show ‘Just Jimmy’, despite this not appearing on Mollie’s Wiki page (will someone kindly make the necessary amendment to Mollie’s page for me?) I delved deeper and looked up Jimmy Clitheroe to discovered he died of what was called an accidental overdose of sleeping tablets while relatives attended the funeral of his mother. That must be the most delicate euphemism for suicide I’ve ever heard.

Again the media is telling us that the nation is overcome with grief at Richards’ death. I don’t think so. I wish the media would not insist on presuming to know the feelings of the nation without the benefit of a poll. What the media is exhibiting – and newspapers in particular – is wishful thinking.

Sir Fred Goodwin, former boss of the failed Royal Bank of Scotland, has rejects calls to give up part of his £16m pension pot. Can’t say I really blame him. If you had a cast-iron legal contract and already had some of your entitlements negotiated down, would you give up your pension? The people to blame are those on the RBS remuneration committee who sanctioned his terms and conditions in the first place, most, if not all of whom have recently been dismissed. Also to blame are the people in the government who negotiated his exit and missed this little item, only to have it come and bite them in the bum afterwards. Seems everyone has had their eyes off the ball.

Some newspapers are calling on the government to simply not pay him, but I’m afraid that will cost even more, as Goodwin has the law on his side. I suppose they could offer him the £16m as shares in RBS, although at the current price that would probably make him the majority shareholder and put him back in charge.

What interests me more is the rate of interest Goodwin will be receiving on his pension pot.

Alan Amos, a former Conservative (and also Labour) politician and now a Worcester councillor, has proposed twinning Worcester with Gaza City. I wonder what the average citizen of Worcester thinks about that. Can’t see many people from Worcester wanting to do exchange holidays in Gaza, although I would imagine quite a few Gazans would jump at the chance of a spell in Worcester. Perhaps Hamas would like to set up a base in Worcester.

I was listening to an interview with James Lovelock, the developer of the Gaia hypothesis, yesterday afternoon. He maintains that due to their sheer size and mass, the seas are the only true indicator of what’s happening in terms of climate change, as they take longer to react to changes and dampen out large fluctuations. He is of the opinion that because global sea levels have increased at twice the rate projected by the IPCC, the situation is much worse than anyone thinks. He posits that rather than spending billions trying to reverse a process that’s already under full steam, we should be more concerned with preparing for and adapting to the inevitable changes that are going to happen. Luckily for those of us who live in the UK, he thinks the UK is going to be one of the world’s lifeboats while vast swathes of continental land masses (USA, Africa, Europe, etc.) will be unable to sustain life due to the flora not being able to cope with the changes.

Have you noticed how technologically advanced air fresheners have become? People spend a bloody fortune to pump chemicals into their houses’ air to make them smell nice. Whatever happened to simply opening the window and admitting the natural stuff?


  1. Goodwin must be the most hated man in England at the moment! Wouldn't be surprised if someone doesn't take a pot shot at him ... but as you say, someone agreed the contract and it has to be paid. Perhaps there should be research into who put the package together.
    God help us if England will be the climate lifeboat - only the English can come up with little phrases like that - the Rest of the World will wither and die, but we English will carry on, undaunted, saved because we are English and live on an island called England.
    'Fresh air' sprays are banned in this house - I know how to open windows and doors. I am quite intelligent.
    The word verification today is birdsies - quite sweet.

  2. Luckily, the sun is shining today, so opening the windows will not lead to drowning by rain invasion, nor yet hypothermia from snow ditto...

  3. Louise - I believe it's something to do with our climate and the fact we're surrounded by water. Large land masses will simply keep on heating up till they reach a point where the flora gets pverwhelmed by the temperature.

    Jinksy - ditto above.

  4. I burn candles, so no air fresheners chez moi, still I am probably going to die of some carbon monoxide poisoning from them - If I don't go in some bizarre fleece-wearing related accident while at the ATM. according to Barnacle Bill!

    Word verif - nifee - An Australian comment on Goodwin's goodies, non?!

  5. Didn't Mollie Sugden have a part in Little Britain fairly recently?

    And I'm with you on the RBS chap. Shows he was at least good at negotiating contracts, if only for himself than the bank. I read that the Government was considering a legal campaign, I hope it is just an attempt to pour fuel on the, still rather ridiculous, hatred fire, rather than an actual threat to pointlessly waste yet more money.

  6. SPD - you are indeed correct about Mollie appearing in Little Britain.

    I used to quite like the show, but it has become somewhat over-formulaic and tedious.

  7. I wondering if the advanced air freshners stuff is something to do with "room vaping"?

  8. CG - you're actually spot-on. Glycerine is an integral component of air-fresheners.