Thursday, November 27, 2003

Ninja Lady
Old people really don't get the respect they deserve - unless they have a sword of course.

Saturday, November 22, 2003

England Win the World Cup.
Jonny Wilkinson - what a guy!Congratulations to the England Rugby team! for their brilliant 20-17 victory over Australia today.
I can't claim to have ever been a huge rugby fan. I was forced to play it for years at school. I was never any good and so our games were always 4th team type affairs.
It was hell. It was always cold and raining, no one knew what was going on or what the rules were. It was a free for all, a chance to sort out grudges and generally put the boot in.
I was always in the scrum - more excuses for getting bashed. If by chance you got the ball, the trick was to get rid of it as soon as possible before someone crushed you.
It was rarely handled, just kick it, chase and jump on the poor bastard who got to it first - bundle. When it was finally over there was the usual communal shower humiliation for all (except for Nigel Hague (real name) and his magnificent cock).

My brother was a big rugby fan so I ended up watching a fair amount of saturday afternoon T.V. coverage over the years, but I never waivered from my first love of Football.
However, bloody hell! Today I couldn't help myself - The World Cup Final, in Australia, against the Aussies. Fantastic stuff. Even as someone with limited experience I realise it wasn't a classic match but these guys are amazing. Jonny Wilkinson, Martin Johnson, Jason Robinson, Lawrence Dallaglio, the whole squad and manager Clive Woodward - True heroes.
They're getting smashed to pieces, they just get up and get on with it. As a football fan it makes me embarrassed to think to the diving, rolling around and amateur dramatics the players get up to as soon as someone gets within a couple of yards of them, the constant moaning at the officials and attempts to get the opposition booked or sent off.
The rugby players appear to respect the officials and their opponents. The Referees are mic-ed up so you can hear what they're saying to the players and you can understand why they make the decisions they do - even if they are wrong, you can understand why they do what they do - unlike football referees.
There are articles everywhere about what football can learn from rugby - I think it may be too late, but I reckon that rugby at all levels will get a huge boost from this victory - I hope so.
I'm converted.
[photo - BBC Sport]

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Free Booty(licious)
One redeeming feature of working in Canary Wharf is all the free stuff at lunchtime - today was a bumper day - sandwich shop Bene Bene was giving out free food and drink, handed out by 'celebrities' such as Jodie Marsh, scary spice's sister, Danielle and the truly scary Lindsay Dawn Mckenzie. All in aid of Children in Need apparently.
Next, Jamiesons Irish Whisky were doing some kind of promotion in the shopping mall - I had my Jamiesons with ginger ale. Waitrose had marshmallows in hot chocolate sauce to flog some kind of fondue set, then the usual wine tasting.
Back past Jamiesons for a quick refresher, filled in the draw to win a trip to Dublin and ended up with a very nice London City Airport felt-tip pen.
I'm such a cheapskate.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Papa don't preach, so to speak
Mrs del Fuego pointed out this absurd article about Madonna in yesterday's Evening Standard
She claims to have "kept secret" her MTV kisses with Britney and Xtina from daughter Lourdes - I think one of Lourdes' school buddies might have let her in on that secret by now. She also says that the kisses were "ironic" ..."It was like a passing on of the baton, so to speak". 'So to speak'??
Then she say's that her own childhood was "very repressive, very catholic", - yet she bans her children from watching TV and wanted to pack Lourdes to a convent school in Ireland - that'll teach her dad.
She's 'chicken jalfrezi!' - don't you know!

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Medical Mayhem
Two odd medicially related stories from the BBC News site caught my eye. Firstly the completely mad sounding face transplants. Skin and face muscles from corpses can be grafted onto people who have been 'facially disfigured'. Nice - a dead persons face - a death mask? furthermore the happy new owner will have to take drugs forever to stop the face rejecting them. Jesus! Can I apply for Jude Law's when he pops his clogs? - depending on how and when he goes of course and how he looks after it in the meantime. Maybe I could put a deposit on it and legally force him not to have plastic surgery?
Even madder still, "When gays were 'cured'" - one of the many 'cures' attempted was as follows..."In the 1920s, mainstream medical researchers in Germany implanted testicles from corpses into the bodies of homosexual men, usually without their knowledge. The idea was to boost testosterone levels."
Yeah I can see how that's going to work!
Dead peoples faces and dead peoples balls! - isn't science fantastic!

Monday, November 10, 2003

Pop Quiz
O.K. here's a question, or rather two..

1). What do these groups have in common?
Fountains of Wayne
Mercury Rev
The Flaming Lips.

2). Who are the British equivalent(s) of these bands?

any thoughts at all welcome...

[Update] - Well spotted ade, they are bands listed in my links section over there on the right. I like them. They are all American. They make some sort of grown-up rock/pop music that mixes great songwriting, intelligent lyrics and humour.
No one is bothered what they look like or how old they are. They make records that sell, even the music critics like them. There is a huge list of American bands like this going back years. One of the first I liked was Sparks, who still make decent albums today.
The point being, question 2. There are no British equivalents as far as I can see, unless anyone can enlighten me. Americans are far better than us at this. We have angsty, humourless coldplay, radiohead and clones.
I realize that it's all tastes and preferences - that's what keeps it interesting, but I reckon there is a great untapped market here.
Any arguments?

Sunday, November 09, 2003

Vintage Technology
Here's a fantastic site - Vintage Technology. I found it while looking for a picture of my old camera. Great photos and scans of vintage adverts of old Hi-Fi, T.V.'s, cameras, computers, video games and systems, musical gear, office equipment, toys and loads of other cool stuff - loads of things to look at and to buy.
I want this for Xmas.

Lunar Eclipse (possibly)
moon or possibly a torch and a bit of card or somethingSo I ended up not having an early night, just staying up for the eclipse. We were lucky to have a clear night considering it had been rainy and cloudy all day.
As you can see, my photo doesn't really do justice to the event. I went to bed once the moon was fully eclipsed so didn't see if it got more spectacular later. I guess I should dig out my old Olympus SLR camera, but I love my digital one even though it's quite old and basic.

Here are some proper photos from the BBC site

Saturday, November 08, 2003

Time Wasters Welcome.
Our house is currently on the market. We've been doing some decorating and no one had been round to view it for a couple of weeks. Consequently the house has been a huge mess.
We heard on Thursday evening that a couple wanted to see it on Saturday 11am. Mad rush to finish painting, not helped by D.I.Y. dog keen to lend a paw - varnishing floors at 1am Friday night, up at 7am Saturday morning cleaning, hoovering, re-arranging entire house and garden, trying to make it look presentable.
Finished at 10.59am - I made coffee, at 11am knock at the door - couple enter house, 11.13am - couple leave house. 13 minutes! A new record! A crazy whirl of manic panicing and building up our hopes, dashed in a moment.
As soon as we saw them, we knew they wouldn't want the house, they wouldn't understand it, it wouldn't work - they needed something smarter, newer, cleaner, less like us.
Still, what can you do - we've viewed houses that we were pretty certain we wouldn't want - you need to see a few to decide what you really do want. Also we now have a nice tidy house and we finished the bedroom that we could have spent another week decorating.
We have been knackered the rest of the day. So it's an early night tonight though I've already set the alarm for 12.45am in hope of seeing the lunar eclipse.

Breaking into Society
There's a new blogger in town - check out Breaking into Society. Be nice because her dad is bigger than you dad or at least if not bigger almost certainly fatter.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Dog Logic
Mrs del Fuego took saffy (our dog) for a walk this morning and was trying to get her to drop by waving a plastic bag with cheese in it in front of her nose when she ate it - bag and all....obvious really.

I would have loved to have seen Chelsea hammering Lazio 4-0 in Rome last night in the Champions League.
However, I was far too busy routing my work pals at tenpin bowling at the Hollywood Bowl (in Surrey Quays). To be fair I only won one round (match ?) out of the four we played. However I was pleased with my first attempt at bowling in twenty years. We used to bunk off afternoons at Lewes Tech and play at King Alfred's on the Seafront in Hove.
Tenpin bowling is great fun and my game improved the more we drank or at least it seemed so to me, but I hadn't realized how competitive I am at everything these days.
Actually, is 'routing' a word? - yeah it is!

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Dogs and DIY (don't mix)
Mrs del Fuego was happily painting the wooden floorboards in a bedroom this morning. She left the room to make a phone call. In her absence the dog wondered into the bedroom, wandered out and meandered around the house - with glossy white paws.
Mrs del Fuego was less than amused. Luckily she told me this via instant messenger and so couldn't hear me laughing.

Sunday, November 02, 2003

Skyscrapers and Groundscrapers
I like mad buildings. Skyscrapers are great - as long as they are in the right place. Apologies if everyone's seen this site before, but my pal Mickos sent me a link to the fantastic skyscrapers.com
It has a huge database of details and images of buildings from all around the world, including current highest buildings, buildings currently under construction, proposals and demolished buildings from all the worlds major cities. (surprisingly, Hastings is absent.) Why do you reckon this one, 'The Green Bird' proposed for Battersea wasn't built?

BekonscotFor some reason that site made me think of the wonderful Bekonscot - "The Oldest Model Village in the World, opening to the public in 1929. Time has stood still for over 70 years, portraying rural England as it was in the 1930s." - Well worth a visit - though it'll have to be today as it's about to close for the winter.
Bekonscot is located in the town of Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire - just North-west of London, not far from Windsor Castle.
I visited as a child and I've taken my kids there, it's fantastic. In the meantime check out the site.

Saturday, November 01, 2003

I've updated my photos - over there on the right --->
I'm not using yahoo anymore to host the photos as it's a bit clonky.
There are some photos of Canary Wharf in the snow and Fireworks in Hastings.