Friday, October 24, 2008

Friday fine - Brief Bloggette

Picture 1 isn't a prize-winner but it does the job of showing you how the mini-salad is growing back after several harvests.

When we had cut off and used its product, mainly for garnishes but once in the latter stages of a crispy-beef stir-fry, I was reluctant to compost it. So I let it go on living on the kitchen window sill and, as I suspected, there were seeds still to germinate. My guess is that when we return from The Rhine there will be another crop to enjoy.

I had my ear (singular - right) syringed by the Practice Nurse this morning and she also reported a good harvest. Immediately I could hear better - I was sure I could detect the sea ! So I need no longer ensure that Y is to my left. We collected our Euros and I've loaded loads of spoken-word podcasts onto my MP3 player. The we packed and our luggage is within the prescribed weight limits. Perhaps I've been a little OTT in the matter of lenses but you never know what you might need ! I have my little DAB radio and plenty of reading. We are so looking forward to a complete break and doing different things.

Last night I e-mailed my contact-list with the third version of my mobile telephone number. 'Eagle eye Brian' spotted that, in error, I had included an extra digit '9'. As Bungus wittily said in reply to my e-mail "I hadn't realised it was a serial".


jill ..... Glad you enjoyed the pictures. And you would most certainly have enjoyed incy wincy's talk and pictures yesterday evening. He specialises in monochrome work and has the most natural 'eye' for a picture of anyone I know of. There was a print of some old fellas in a Spanish Café playing dominoes which Cartier-Bresson would have been proud of. That link is to Cartier-Bresson's Wiki page, please click here for a link to some of his pictures.

Thanks for 'the Cruising advice' and Y has noted it.

Can't think why my leather coat is so cosy - but it is.

bungus ...... You make a fair point about the coat and my size. 2 points - I can't button it up, and I was fairly hefty when we bought it.

Thanks for the précis of the driptrip. Could Jackson Pollock have painted a driptriptych do you think or was he too busy christening tasteless fish ?

Yesterday evening at EPS we didn't actually 'get around' to needing me to do my Picasa 3 slot. And I was relieved. I think Reg took one look at my face and realised I was suffering ! Now, if EPS could meet at say 3.30am they would catch me at my best. But as I guess I would be there all by myself, no-one would appreciate the finer points of my lecture.

Re 'carrying music around'. I don't ! The items I download onto my MP3 player are Radio 4 programmes like Melvyn Bragg's 'In our time' and Roger McGough's 'Poetry Please' , Radio 3's ' The Essay' and stuff like that. Music is mostly lost on me. MP3 players are only storage devices, they aren't exclusively for music.

"I wish I'd looked after my Teef" sounds like Pam Ayres. Is it ?

Like jill below, I need an explanation of the acronym FSMO. I won't hazard a guess because they all sounded rude.

Quotation time ................ This appeals to me...........

"What a blessing it would be if we could open and shut our ears as easily as we open and shut our eyes ! "

Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

Sounds like quite a fella. Good hour in a pub etc., .............


I haven't done a link to The Rhine. And I'm not taking my laptop. So the next time you hear from me will probably be the 3rd November. Please feel free to exchange 'comments' via the blog, as has happened before, and it keeps the generators ticking over so to speak. But if you all need a rest too ........ etc.,

David's birthday occurs while we are away - So Happy Birthday David !!


bungus said...

Please ignore the next passage unless you want to hear me having a moan.

I felt distinctly unwell on Friday following my treatment on Thursday. The two may not necessarily be connected. I awoke at 6.00am, from a very disturbing and largely realistic dream, with a headache and general feeling of dehydration, weakness, wobbliness and lassitude. This never entirely left me all day although I forced myself to cut the grass, which badly needed doing, and my appetite was unaffected.
A recent change in blood presuure medication may be alternatively accountable but my hospital treatment had seemed different – the fluid was in a clear bag whereas previously it has always been lightproof. It also seemed to last only about half the usual time. That may have no significance but I feel that I should bring it to my consultant’s attention (the reason for making this record). End of ‘woe is me’ report.

This morning (Saturday) I did not wake until 10.00 o’clock of the forenoon – and still feeling rubbish.
I was late to bed, however, having watched Bill Bailey in a repeat of his 2004 concert, ‘Part Troll’, which I had seen before, at least in part. I found it quite brilliantly imaginative and surreal; musically, conceptually and presentationally compelling and entertaining. It concluded with a four man Hokey-Cokey sung in German and danced in robotic fashion. A ‘must see’. Again.
At 30 minutes after noon I am feeling more like it.

On the news from America, an interviewee said he would have been aiming to vote for Obama were the candidate not in favour of abortion and opposed to guns. Palin said she was proud to be called a ‘Redneck’.

Re the card game ‘pairs’:
It seems to be something at which children can always beat adults. I mentioned it to Sandra who was beaten by Josh (nearly 6) the other night and recalls that our children (esp Steph, a games fanatic) always beat her – and, like Yvonne, and unlike some other games, she never played to lose.
I don’t play. I don’t play drafts or Monopoly either, having never beaten anyone at one or the other.

The mini-salad is doing remarkably well!

I can already understand you more easily now that you have had your right ear syringed.

I hope that your mobile phone is Rhinebound as I intend to text (just once).

It is comforting to discover that, in spite of your trials and tribulations (mobiles and mobility) you are still capable of talking a load of Pollocks – without being tasteless.
I like the ‘driptriptrych’ pun but think it might benefit from abbreviation to ‘driptrych’

Without wishing to cause offence, I can see that some would consider that there might occasionally be advantages to your lecturing to an empty room; although I, of course, could not possibly comment.

I am not entirely convinced by your MP3 explanation but, if it suits you, I concede that it is doing little harm to others.
It is not something I would consider banning in the event of my becoming dictator.

Yes, it is Pam Ayres – I just couldn’t bring her name to mind and never got around to checking.

And yes again, a very decent quotation. It leads me to the thought, not original, that there are advantages to deafness.
1) One can ‘switch off’, and
2) One acquires some strange information of the Chinese Whispers variety, eg the BBC headline ‘Giant Killer Whales Devastate Germany’ which turned out to be a 1-0 defeat of the German football team by the Welsh.
Which, in turn, leads me to the classic wartime headline,
‘British Push Bottles Up Germans’

I hope you read this on your return as it contains below an explanation of FSMO.
You were a Brylcream Boy, of course, so, presumably, were never called upon to carry heavy loads such as 2 Bren Guns or 2 Ammo Boxes.

Sorry to be obscure.
FSMO is ‘Field Service Marching Order’ which is a slightly odd military term used to describe the full amount of kit that a soldier may be called upon to carry into battle and which is usually only invoked as a punishment.
It may vary from regiment to regiment (?) but, at its extreme, it is the load carried by the yomping Marines and Paras in the Falklands. I think theirs weighed something like 70lb.

Jill said...

Well, I thought of all sorts of explanations for FSMO but that was not one of them....

I trust you are feeling better? Changes in medication can do all sorts of things to you - mine was changed once, it affected my vision quite badly and I was passing out without any warning - I was afraid to leave the house/drive for some time, even though I stopped taking it.

Is that the Bill Bailey who appears on 'QI'? We are enjoying Simon Schama's programmes on
America, and Stephen Fry's indulgent amble around it. I watched 'Little Dorrit' last night, it hasn't quite grabbed me yet, but we have a long way to go and lots more characters. I remember seeing a film version with Derek Jacobi in it, which I enjoyed even if it was very long (I get fidgetty after a couple of hours)but cannot remember the plot....and have never read the book.

Checking the weather I think it is a bit chilly on the Rhine.....

bungus said...

Liverpool beat Chelsea. Is that good or bad? Man U couldn’t master Everton. The Stags draw with York was the brightest feature for Notts teams.
Murray won again though.

Still feeling peculiar but some close to me would say I AM peculiar so no surprises there.

I think there is only one Bill Bailey – small, whispy beard and bald head surrounded by shoulder length hair. Plays numerous musical instruments very well and amusingly. Great.

'Little Dorrit' didn’t do a lot for me although several of the characters were interesting and I enjoyed the acting, esp Alun Armstrong, Sue Johnston and Tom Courtenay (but Bill Paterson is always Bill Paterson). Prison looked remarkably comfortable but debtors’ prisons were strange places.
I have never managed to read any Dickens apart from David Copperfield when I was in my teens. I think the writing is excellent but I simply cannot stay with it.

anonymousrob said...

Liverpool beating Chelsea has got to be good for Liverpool. Having beaten ManU earlier in the season they must be feeling they've got a chance. It could be any one of the big four this season. I can't see any other team breaking through; I guess everyone is waiting for Hull's bubble to burst. Apparently 10 years ago they were bottom of the entire football league.

The Stags did well I thought. Let's hope it boosts their confidence. The replay is tomorrow.

Panthers also drew, at home to Coventry, in a cup match. They have now gone 4 games without a win but they lost the other 3, albeit an overtime loss at Cardiff. They need to start winning again, though, and should do at home to Basingstoke tomorrow night - assuming Basingstoke have a team because, it seems, they have little or no money.

I should imagine the Rhine is cold at this time of year. Hopefully the boat will be warm. Does anyone know which boat they are on and whether there is a website to follow its progress?

We didn't watch Little Dorrit as we're not really into costume dramas. On Saturday night we went to the Dixies Arms and saw an excellent guitarist/singer by the name of Chris Ward. If he's playing in your area, go and see him. Ditto Mark Daniels.

Tonight, all being well, I shall be back in my darkroom printing black and white pictures. Haven't been able to get in for one reason or another since about March/April. I shall enjoy the frustration more than trying to produce a good quality black and white print on a computer.

I saw RG at EPS Thursday night (incy wincy's pictures were outstanding). I'm please RG has had his ear syringed because I could hardly hear him.


bungus said...

Yesterday I cooked breast of pigeon with apple, onion, bacon & herbs in veg stock and cider. I added some peas at the end and ate it with a jacket potato.
It was absolutely delicious and I shall certainly try the same method with pheasant.

Eastwood also did well on Saturday to hold Wrexham. Let’s hope that both they and Mansfield are able to get a goal or two at home tonight. Mansfield have the added incentive of a visit to old rivals Chesterfield.
It was at Saltergate in, I believe, 1959, where I had need at half time to visit the ‘gents’ (something of a euphemism, as it was an open-to-the-sky corrugated iron structure with a gutter running along the base of one wall).
I took up a strategic position at the opposite end to the plug’ole. As I bent my head, my lovat green
cap (one of the gentlemanly felt type, in fashion at the time, with the crown sewn to the peak) fell into the fast flowing stream and floated away. As it neared the outfall, someone enquired, “Whose is that?”
“Yours if you want it,” I responded.

A pity Hull never made it to the top division in the mid 60s when they had that amazing front line containing Chris Chilton, Ken Houghton and Kenny Wagstaff (unarguably the finest English goalscorer never to play for his country).
Manager Phil Brown is currently keeping his head (and his feet on the ground) while enjoying the moment. And they are fun to watch.
They should avoid relegation.

I’ll bet the Rhine is cold! But I don’t think either G or Y are ones for the early morning dip.

Re TV, I watched ‘Red Dragon’ again the other night. Good, but not, for me, as good as the b&w ‘Manhunter’ version with Brian Cox as Lecter.

Glad to hear that you have found the key to your darkroom. That should help you forget the tedium of the working day and get you out from under Elaine’s feet for some part of the dark winter nights.

Oddly (I take it that your comment on Graham’s hearing was satirical) when my ears need syringing I talk in library tones. This is not a deliberate ‘why should they be able to hear me if I can’t hear them’ syndrome.
I think it is one of the several disadvantages of deafness that sufferers either shout or whisper without knowing that they are doing it.

anonymousrob said...

RG did seem to me to be talking softly on Thursday night. Maybe his unsyringed ear was amplifying the sound of his voice inside his head. However, there was a lot of background hubbub going on so that may have affected his hearing and, thus, his voice level. Maybe I'm the one with a hearing problem. "I heard that, pardon?" as Uncle Staveley used to say.

A good footballing night for Notts clubs in the main. Excellent victories for the Stags, Eastwood and Forest. County lost at home though as did the Panthers to a team near the bottom of the league and nearly out of existence. Heads may well roll!


bunus said...

Well done Stags (“We’re on our way to Wembley!”), also Forest, and, especially, Eastwood. Hard luck Panthers.

Sandra had a bad day on Wednesday.
She had tried to pay her Goldfish credit card by phone on Tuesday (Goldfish is now part of Barclays but she had not received her new card).
The ‘helpline’ phone number provided a message that it is no longer operative - and no alternative is offered. She phoned another number taken from documentation and spoke to someone whose command and understanding of English is less than perfect. He wanted to speak to her ex-husband. Waste of time.
I paid from my bank account online. That did not register until Thursday so it is very likely that she will be charged interest and probably a penalty for late payment.
That wasn’t all.
Later in the morning, she set of for Nottingham on a shopping trip and stopped on the way to fill up with petrol. Her Goldfish card (which she had been told to continue using until the new one arrives) was not accepted. Fortunately she had activated a new Tesco card and was able to use that.
Having reached The Forest at Nottingham she parked the car and went by tram into the city. At the Victoria Centre, she was taken ill (shivering, shaking, sweating). Fortunately two passing women noticed, stayed with her, and called security who called paramedics who wheeled her into an ambulance and took her to Queen’s Med A&E where she was diagnosed with pleurisy (probably the result of an unshakeable virus which she picked up a month ago).
After considering whether to keep her in overnight, it was eventually decided that she should be allowed home and her doctor informed.
Everyone she had encountered was very kind, concerned and attentive throughout.
What concerns me, however, and I have observed what appears to be a similar glaring fault in the system in other cases, is that no one asked where she lived, how she was going to get there, or whether she lived alone.
In the event, after considering phoning her sister in Bridgford, she took a £14 taxi ride to The Forest and drove 20 miles home, arriving about 10.00 pm.
Meanwhile I had been sorting out 4 pheasants.
I am renowned as a pheasant plucker.

Was RG carrying a big stick while he talked softly?

Jill said...

I'm very glad the 'ordinary' people were so kind to Sandra (pleurisy is horrid, I know...)but presumably it was the professionals who didn't think to ask about getting home etc.? I hope she is tucked up in bed, keeping warm, it is bitterly cold here.

I had another marathon dental session toda, the final one, under sedation, but much longer than expected owing to some trouble with tooth/crown, went at 10.l5, not home (50 yds away) until 2.45 - slept all afternoon,only finally woken up, and know I am not right, have not done a single clue in the crossword.

I would feel like cutting up my new goldfish card and sending it straight back to them.....

bungus not bunus said...

“I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me.”
Noel Coward.

I must point out that Sandra said EVERYONE was extremely kind and concerned, including the professionals – there just seems to be a black hole or something when it comes to ensuring aftercare (I cannot complain personally because the District Nurses were round straight away when I got home and would still be coming if I hadn’t said ‘I can manage thanks’ about a month ago).

Sandra was so poorly on Friday, after a day in bed, that we persuaded her to let us call out the duty GP.
He considered the antibiotics she had been prescribed at Queens were right but added another just for luck. She picked up during the day and came down to lie on the settee and watch Eastenders (it cheers her up). This morning she is much brighter; so the medication seems to be working.

Without actually knowing, I suspect the temperature up here is a couple of degrees lower than yours! There is always that sort of difference between Mansfield and Southwell, which is only some ten miles away but warmer; their plants are always two weeks ahead.
On Wed morning there was condensation on the inside of the (double glazed) bedroom window; a long time since I have seen that.

I don’t envy your marathon dental sessions. Mine are much more relaxed affairs. I had not realised that there is a direct link between enamel and brain. Perhaps only a temporary fault, let us hope.

Goldfish was very good at first as the 1% reward could be used to partly pay the British Gas bills.
I have managed, at second attempt, to register and change the PIN number of MY new Barclays Goldfish card.
I intend to get a Tesco one (to get their loyalty points which can be excellent value), use the Barclays Goldfish briefly and then overpay it by a miniscule amount before cutting it up. I did that with TSB some ten years ago and get schoolboy satisfaction from receiving monthly notice that they owe me 4p.

Jill said...

Pleased to hear Sandra is feeling better, but do tell her to take things easy, not to rush back into doing things, otherwise you never really get rid of whatever-it-is, it just hangs around making you feel rotten, but not bad enough to stay in bed.... Eastenders always used to cheer me up too, things in our family were never as bad as in Eastenders, when I think back over Christmas tiffs, etc, nobody here actually died or got divorce papers.....

I must remember your ruse about over-paying by a minimal amount, that would give me a vicarious pleasure too, I must get my pleasures where I can nowadays.....

I think the link is between sedation and brain, I slept for eleven hours last night, almost unheard of. I struggled to keep awake during Simon Schama's excellent series about the US, and I thought I had managed it, but I can only recall very little, shall have to watch the repeat.

We have got what looks like a nice piece of undyed smoked haddock from fishmonger, we shall have that with a poached egg on top.

Have you had your pheasants yet?

bungus said...

According to Radio Nottingham:
1) on grounds of Health & Safety, pins may no longer be supplied with Remembrance Poppies.
2) Barclays bank have been financed by Middle Eastern countries and subsequently have turned down British government support as that would stop them paying bonuses to their fat cats.
Come The Revolution…
streets flowing with Barclays’ blood.

The Stags and County did well again (that is what passes for irony in Ollerton) and there isn’t much hope for Forest today.

Cheeta’s autobiography ‘Me Cheeta’ appears to have received universally favourable reviews.
Taken from the Liberian jungle in 1932 he is now 76, the world’s oldest non-human primate, and living in Palm Springs.
He starred in a dozen or so films between ‘Tarzan & his Mate’ in 1934and ‘Dr Doolittle’ in 1967.
Craig Brown said that Cheeta, as a raconteur, ‘is right up there with the likes of David Niven’.
One memorable quote from the book is ‘If Marlene Dietrich was one of the good Germans, then the bad ones must be absolutely ******* terrifying’.
It is sad that his co-star, Olympic swimming champion Johnny Weismuller, who ‘never had an enemy’, ended up destitute and confined to a wheelchair by a series of strokes.
(In case anyone is wondering, Cheeta did employ a ghost writer, James Lever.)

One way of looking
at it, said the fly as it
crawled up the mirror.

Thanks for the sympathy.
Unfortunately it is no good telling Sandra anything. She must be not very well because, very much unlike her, she didn’t significantly get up yesterday except to get herself drinks and food (she won’t ask).
Re ‘pleasures’, I have just heard that an old friend of mine (40 years ago and even older than me) has recently got herself a boyfriend and spends half her time in Rotherham and half in Devon. Good on ‘er, I say.
Devon sounds nicer than Rotherham unless you are stuck five foot deep in hailstones!

re ‘falling asleep’, I missed ‘Match of the Day’ last night (set the alarm and watched the replay at 7.30 this morning) in order to watch the de Niro / Pacino film ‘Heat’ (on 2) but had to give up and go to bed halfway through.

Thanks for mentioning the smoked haddock. I was wondering what to do for us today and we have some in the freezer.
Have suggested with poached egg but S has opted for kedgeree which suits me.
I’ve casseroled 2 of the pheasants which makes 4 portions (frozen 3 and enjoyed the other one last night with mash and, to try, tinned petit pois which weren’t half bad. I used the same easy apple/onion/cider/herb recipe as for the pigeon (which I actually preferred) but ended up with too much gravy, so some adjustment is required there.
The two remaing bods I’ve frozen as 4 portions.