Monday, 29 June 2009

The Great Old Sodbury Power Failure

The sky is the colour of lead, it’s as dark as a winter morning and the heavens have opened – summer is finally here. May get to see the new roof at Wimbers used today.

We were bereft of electricity from 11:00 till 19:00 yesterday - The Great Old Sodbury Power Failure. It’s useful having a calor gas water heating system that doesn’t rely on electricity. A whole afternoon without t’internet was hard to cope with thought– I was a gibbering wreck by 6pm.

Anyone understand how fridges work? If you turn the knob inside the fridge from 1 to 5, does it get colder or warmer? Logic tells me that the lower the number, the cooler the setting, but I have a vague suspicion that the normal rules of logic have no part to play in fridge settings and it’s more to do with the power consumption.

Was watching some of the Glastonbury highlights on BBC iPlayer last night. You wouldn’t think Neil Young was a rock star – he looks more like a bus driver or garage mechanic on his break. Time has not treated David Crosby well, has it? Unfortunately I couldn’t find the Spinal Tap session on iPlayer. If anyone knows the link please pass it to me. Have you noticed how beards are making a comeback among pop stars?

Ref Saturday’s episode of putting food into someone else’s shopping trolley; Hay has come up with a solution to my absentmindedness – trolley reins.

Jacko’s mum has started threatening legal action against Debbie Rowe the biological mother of Jacko’s first 2 kids, if she makes any move to lay claim to them. Rowe hadn’t even said a word before the threats were being issued. Katherine Jackson apparently wants to look after them and bring them up as Jehova’s Witnesses – which is surely child abuse of the grossest kind. Don’t the kids have anything to say in this? In any case, given the colour of the kids it’s highly unlikely Katherine Jackson is even remotely genetically connected with them in the first place and so it’s more an issue of ownership. One suspects Mamon and filthy lucre is lurking behind this, as the guy may well have been living on borrowed money, but his records are now selling faster than ever and his estate will be worth a fortune before much longer.

I read yesterday that Richard Dawkins, Darwin’s Rottweiler, has come up with the concept of summer schools to teach kids critical thinking. At first I thought, oh here he goes off on his hobbyhorse again with his militant atheism, and started to scan the article for condemnations from various religious groups accusing him of the indoctrination of children. Naturally, however, there weren’t any, and nor can there be, as this is exactly the type of thing they themselves do with their religiously themed summer camps. Dawkins is at least teaching the kids to think – something the religious groups could never logically do as it would undermine their command and control structures and the basis for their belief systems.

Following the 11 September 2001 attacks, when asked how the world might have changed, Dawkins responded:

“Many of us saw religion as harmless nonsense. Beliefs might lack all supporting evidence but, we thought, if people needed a crutch for consolation, where's the harm? September 11th changed all that. Revealed faith is not harmless nonsense, it can be lethally dangerous nonsense. Dangerous because it gives people unshakeable confidence in their own righteousness. Dangerous because it gives them false courage to kill themselves, which automatically removes normal barriers to killing others. Dangerous because it teaches enmity to others labelled only by a difference of inherited tradition. And dangerous because we have all bought into a weird respect, which uniquely protects religion from normal criticism. Let's now stop being so damned respectful!”

He has a very valid point, but I don’t always agree with his methods as they make him sound a little too strident.


  1. [Re: The fridge] I think the higher the number the lower the temperature.
    I will be back later with popcorn to observe arguements.

  2. Scarlet: I suspect you may be right.

  3. I think Scarlet is right about the Number-Fridge-Thang.
    Yea, I thought Neil Young was Great @ Glasto.I had to laugh at this in today's Guardian.

  4. Tony: The press can say what they like about Neil Young, but he's one of a handful of rock stars who has remain true to his roots and hasn't gone for endless make-overs and come-backs. He's still the eco-warrior he originally was and has never left the scene. Pandering to the lates fad is not his thing.

  5. They;re critising Glastonbury for being too "old" now. They didn't say that last year when they had Shakin Stevens and Gilbert O sullivan (2 semi-Gods of mine). Thats because they were REAL musicians - not that silly Bruce Wayne or whatever he's called and that daft-looking Neil Old.

    Good post. Sorry you lost your 'leccy. xxx

  6. Jenny: Neil Young is not to be criticised on these pages. Skankin' Stevens?

  7. ....well - not for his music. His Worzel Gummidge impression is a fair target.

  8. Neil Young is God, and he has not remained at a standstill with his music, although thank the goddess he is not lowping about embarrassingly on stage, botoxed and airbrushed to the hilt, like Madonna...

    We have leccy cuts all the time here up in the rural north, usually when an errant farmer pulls down the cables with his tractor! And although it does throw one back upon one's wits a bit - It's good for the soul, Sir!

  9. Woman: I would only go as far as to say a demi-god. For full Godhead he would have to be omnipresent, like Simon Cowell.

    What is a soul?

  10. Was Scarlet-Blue expecting arguments about the fridge setting or on the your Dawkins thing (that turned out, rather surprisingly, rather a damp squib)? Hope her popcorn didn't go soggy (from the rain, the tears of frustration or just the long wait). Dare I say that maybe she should come back after the gold rush?

  11. You're right about lack of logic regarding the fridge! :)
    I think I agree with Dawkins in that excerpt at least! And, also your theories on summer school!!

  12. I would happily trade some rain for an electricity cut. But it is very, very hard to be cut off from one's Internet.

    Were you laughing when you wrote that last sentence about Dawkins' stridency?