Showing posts from July, 2008

Running Ettiquette

My training for the Great North Run seems to have gone totally to pot. I had started to work towards training on a Monday and a Wednesday night, but with the return to the drama group last week, Monday is now blown out of the water. I can hear your shouts now: Run to drama! Well, Monday, I did exactly that ... and I won't be doing it again! All decked out with shorts, sports vest, iPod gear and a change of clothes in my rucksack - complete with mandatory flannel and can of deodourant - I set off for rehearsals. Before I had even left the flat, I knew it was a bad idea, but I was adamant that I had to catch up with the running, so forged ahead. Boy was it a hard run: if you look at my graph for the day it looks like a seismograph output for a small earth tremor. Not that I moved the earth that night. If I had, the reaction would most likely have been, "Is that it?". I'm putting it down to running a lot earlier than I would normally so, mentally, I had not rea

Strange World

Is it me and my sense of normality that is wrong, or is the world around us getting stranger by the day?? A couple of months ago, when I was travelling with my cousin oop North for the Advanced Open Water dive training, we spotted something that took us somewhat by surprise. Stuck to the back of a passing motorcycle was what looked like two tupperware boxes glued together ... with a small dog inside. Seriously. I'm not sure how fresh the guy was expecting to keep his little pooch... Since that day, I have started to see more and more weird pooch pampering, from little rich girls carrying their Pomeranians in their handbags to cats on leads to things even more surreal ... ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Pet Stroller: Image from One question: WHY?! Please, People, be sensible!!! Your dog has legs for a reason: if it didn't, it wouldn't be a dog, it would be a Tribble !!! If Tring is any measure of odd trends, then you could start seeing

Strange Attraction

Just over one week ago, the Centralian Players had auditions for their October play, a celebratory production for one of its members who has been with the group an amazing 50 years! Personally, I can't see myself staying that long at anything as my interest in any activity waxes and wanes more frequently than any lunar cycle.  Not that I'm fickle, I just get bored easily and if the past few years are anything to go by, I will be leaving and rejoining the group so often that I would have to be around for another 70 years before I ever actually achieve 50 years with the group. To be honest, if I am around for another 70 years, I am more likely to be getting a telegram from Royalty than treading the boards with anything more than the Old Man Slipper-Shuffle. But I digress, as usual... With only around 25 people in the group and two thirds of those willing to be on stage, it was pretty much inevitable that those who wanted a part in the next production would get one: and yes,

It's Clobberin' Time

I think that, perhaps, I am starting to settle a little into my new role: today I had to 'have words' with one of the little fledglings. By 'have words', I am in no way referring to the police's interpretation of the phrase (according to my contact in the Met), as that kind of behaviour would result in them 'having words' with me and would put a real dampener on the blogging. No, this was more the bringing into line an individual who has been taking advantage of the relaxed atmosphere here. Whilst we do not operate flexi-time per se, if someone is a little late one day then as long as they make up the time, no problem. I'm as guilty as the next guy for being a few minutes late in, but at least I regularly stay into the evening hours: if anything, the company owes me hours, not vice versa! Although this chap is consistently late by anything up to thirty minutes, he has actually started to make up the time recently, possibly because he is now on some

Mr Calm

Ooookay, last post was a bit emotive - apologies for that! Hearing about the use of my card by a fraudster was another belly punch to add to the collection I've been having lately (mostly with work) and, unfortunately, I had to rant. Actually, its all good motivation to go for a run to try and burn some of it off, hence the calmness now. Perhaps next time I should consider running before I write a post!

Mr Livid

Here I was, all ready to tell you about the shenanigans over the past few days and suddenly it all pales into insignificance. My Dad stalked by a deer? Pah! My new dive computer and diving for the first time with my own kit? Who cares?! Finally finding out about the payrise to go with the job? Whatever! No, what has really got my blood boiling is receiving a call today from my credit card company and discovering that some thieving little bastard has attempted to use my card, this very morning, to book a £1,146 holiday through Expedia. Not only that, but the little sh*thead has, over the past couple of days, used it to pay for travel around London. The thieving little f*cker. I swear if I ever catch up with him, I'll kneecap the bastard! Over the past two weeks, I have only used my card twice: once for my car's tax disc and once for the quarry where Pygmie and I go diving. Whilst I have used the card to do both of these before, this is the first time I have left my

Worst Trilogy Ever

Ever since a wee young bairn, I have enjoyed writing. My sis and I would regularly write out stories on A4 paper, stapling them together to make books, then re-write them to make them more interesting. Unsurprisingly, nobody ever wanted to read them. Geez, that was a while ago! As I got older, I found myself drifting toward horror novels and sci-fi TV* and spent more time day-dreaming than writing, so my head filled up with ideas that became mostly forgotten: though I do still have one novel and one mini TV series that have been banging around at the back of my head since college days, back in ... um ... oh ... 1989. *cough* Actually, this is where blogging comes in. I may not actually write about much that is particularly interesting, but it is still writing ... and it seems I have inadvertantly written a trilogy. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you ... Dive Stores ... (bear with me, I'm tired and delirious!) As is want with these things, we started at Episode IV - A New Hob

Lotus 'Eagle' Rumour

So, this is rumoured to be the new Lotus, codenamed Eagle. Image from *sigh* Chances of me ever owning one are nil, but we can but dream... Of course, when looking for info on new cars, you're bound to come across various other rumours and concepts: also appearing on Paul's site is this model of the Proton PM5. Image from Does anyone else think this car is aimed purely at women? Why else would they pick a model number that looks like PMS?? Definitely one car you'll be eager to get out of the way of!!

Tech Support

Spot on!

Curiouser and Curiouser

I have to confess that blogging has become rather difficult of late, mostly because work has been taking up pretty much all my time. Unfortunately, this means the only thing to write about - other than my rampant spending habits last weekend - is the currently frustrating world of work. Boooooring! So, last night, I sat down to write something, even if it was only about the impulse purchase of the rather good Spiderwick Chronicles . Nada. I just wasn't in the mood. Then I heard the sirens. Living so close to the local fire station it is inevitable that you will hear sirens at some point and on quite a regular basis, but they rarely come down my road. When the sirens stop at the end of the road, you can be pretty sure they are turning in, which has me leaping to the window like a cat at a goldfish bowl. The last time they headed into the car park for the flats was to put out a car that had been dumped by joyriders and set alight, so my first thought was that the same had ha

Thing for Water

The past three days I can be pretty sure that I have emotionally flipped from one extreme to the other ... and as far as Friday is concerned, flipped is the right word. I am generally an easy guy to get on with: especially if you don't rely on me to keep the conversation going as I have more of a gift-of-the-vacant than a gift-of-the-gab. Basically, if someone is friendly with me, then I'm friendly in return; which goes some way to explaining why I spent 1.5 hours nodding at Tring Betty whilst she gave me her life history. Some people, on the other hand, push that friendliness to a point where even courtesy becomes very hard work. One of our customer's staff members is just such a person, a bully who throws her weight around, swears profusely in front of staff, suppliers and management, and who has a hissy-fit when she doesn't get her own way. She also has far too strong a handshake for a lady. We don't like her. Unfortunately for me, I am right in the centr

When can I do the real work??

I'm not sure if it is supposed to work this way or not, but since I became a director (in the loosest possible sense of the word) it feels like I am in one incredibly long, never-ending meeting ... and I still have the developer work to do, too! Monday saw me having an incredibly early start in order to meet my boss at Kings Cross at seven in the morning, which meant getting up before five and leaving my place before six.  I'll let those of you that know me get up off the floor before I continue...* We were to travel together to Darlington for a meeting at one of our customer's regional offices.  First class, no less ... which basically means as much tea or coffee as you like, but if you want anything else then you have to pay extra for it; a bit tight considering how much the tickets cost. The meeting was useful but as is usual, raised more questions that needed answering, some of which were answered in a follow-up meeting that I was asked to attend this afternoon, this

F for Effort

If I were still at school and blogging was part of the coursework*, then my efforts so far at writing posts have been somewhat abysmal. However, m'lud, in my defense, I haven't been able to park my derriere on a seat to hammer out any ramblings for a fair few days now ... and when I did get the opportunity, I fell asleep! Somehow, I managed to book a couple of days off work at the end of last week by telling my boss that I was helping Pygmie and Shagwell to move halfway across the country. Which was the truth. Partly. The little nugget of information I neglected to pass on was that I was to spend Thursday diving with Pygmie at Vobster Quay where we undertook our EFR training a couple of weeks ago (another little nugget I haven't passed on). Oddly, for me, I didn't feel guilty about it either. As my kit wasn't going to arrive in time, I opted to hire the kit at the quarry which, for an all-in fifty quid, proved to be something of a bargain. I could have tak

You searched for what???

Its been a couple of months since I went through the search keywords that were somehow leading people to this little corner of the web, so I thought I would take a peek to see if anything more of bafflement had been used since April's "white fuzz on my oscar"*. Well, it seems that Gimli is still topping the charts through May and June.  Interest in the diminunitive one does appear to be waning a little, though with searches like "gimli !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" its easy to think short, hairy men are in high demand! To be honest, with the lack of posts I have been making recently, the number of people popping in for a brief spell has dropped quite dramatically, so the weirdness factor of the searches is disappearing with it. However, these are the best of the bunch from the past two months: "police sex toys" backgrounds of bellybuttons bellybutton fluf

Amazing Talent!

And now for someone who, at the age of 2, has more talent than my little finger!!!