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RatGeek: Ahhhggg!

11 Feb

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The obligatory snow-related post

2 Feb

At last some decent snow. Rather than the fabulously crap stuff we normally get. Our street, usually a perfect postcard for Broken Britain, looks quite beautiful.

But, apparently, we’re woefully ill-equiped and the whole country has frozen to a wintery halt (as you know, British people will do anything for a cheeky day-off). According to reports our vitally important transport infrastructure is hobbled, schools are shut, businesses are losing bazillions of pounds, and people are sliding around in their cars with ashen faces, as the realisation that braking and steering might be a tad dicey, suddenly dawns.

The biggest problem with all this is that now we have to suffer the obligatory rants from an army of boring political bloggers, venting – with impressive inanity – about Britain’s inability to suffer crap weather.

Well this morning I took my kids to school and it was open. My wife drove to work without careering into a ditch. The TV still works, as do the phones. We have power and hot water.

So as far as I can tell, Britain’s not completely screwballed. So let’s keep it all in perspective, eh?

On car seats

22 Jan

Jesus, getting the kids in and out of the car is a drag.

Child car seats, and now those bastard compulsory booster seats, must be specially designed to make journeys as stressful as possible.

I think companies are mandated to make them dysfunctional. There I am in the back of the car, doubled over like a porn star being drilled by a moustachioed washing-machine repairman, trying to get two pieces of metal into an impossibly small slot while my kids wriggle and squirm like captured fish.

Maybe child car seats are a subtle weapon in the war against climate change. The government, it seems, are committed to making every car journey as painful as possible.

It was raining this morning, and both of my children have the sniffles. It made sense to keep them dry and warm in the car, but I spent all morning dreading the rigmarole of getting the little scamps into their seats.

The wife is over in Paris for a week with her sister, so the opportunity of getting out of the school-run this week is non-existant. Tomorrow I’ll put an extra layer on the kids and brave the winter air sans automobile. I guess you win, Al Gore. You smug big-faced bastard.

BJ the Mayor Bear wrote about car-seats a few years ago, so I’ll leave you with opening paragraphs of his rant ::

Of all the sensations of joy and release that Nature in her kindness has bestowed on the human race, there is little or nothing to beat the moment when you get rid of the baby’s car seat.

It beats getting off a long-haul flight. It beats taking off a pair of ill-fitting ski-boots after a hard day on the slopes. It verges, frankly, on the orgasmic. As you take the wretched thing to Oxfam, you thank your stars that never again will you have to grapple with that incomprehensible buckle.

Never again will you stand sweating over your baby as it screams and writhes and sticks yoghurt in your ear. Never again will you have that struggle of wills, as the child’s efforts to escape become ever more desperate and violent, and you grow later and later in setting off on your journey.

For children and parents alike that precious moment – when it is deemed that the offspring are capable of sitting on their own in the back with only a seat belt – is one of the pleasures of growing up. It is a rite of passage, a moment of pride and childish prestige.

It is, therefore, utterly incredible that the state should now be trying to prolong our national car seat agony. How old do you think they have to be before the nanny state will let your kids sit in the back without a car seat? Did I hear six? Did I hear seven? No, my friends, we are being asked to put our children in plastic booster seats until they reach the ripe old age of 12 or attain a height of 135cm, whichever is the sooner.

My wife

2 Dec

I got married at the end of October. We’ve just received the wedding pictures. Here is a taster.

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Obviously I’m not as photogenic as my wife.

Hitched

20 Oct

I know, everyone hates those “I wont be blogging for a few days” posts.

Well this is one of those.

I’m getting married tomorrow, so I’ll be offline for a few days as we have the ceremony and go away to Dublin for a few days. We’re having the ceremony at a large country house in Lincolnshire that has significant history for us – I first told Olga I loved her in the house’s grounds several years ago.

Yeah, I’m a soppy git.

It’s going to be a very small wedding. 15-guests plus children. Champagne in the gardens and then off to a gastro-pub for dinner. Then Olga and myself fly to Dublin.

We’re planning a longer honeymoon in Sankt-Peterburg early next year.

So, this blog will be quiet for the next few days. Sunny is primed to keep an eye on Liberal Conspiracy from the States, and I should be back and on the ball on Friday.

I did think about micro-blogging the ceremony, but then I do value my life. ;o)

Toodle-pip

No blogging today

17 Jul

I have a new book.

Also, I fly back to the UK tomorrow for a week. Blogging will be light.

hot and sticky

30 Jun

Nice title, eh?

The weather here has been awful today. It’s been raining, so wearing a jacket on my walk into the city (in search of the second series of The Wire on DVD – FAIL*) was a necessity. But it was also t-shirt hot, so inside my jacket I was sweltering. Indeed, on exiting a shop near home, I decided to leave my jacket off and just bear the rain in my polo shirt.

I’m now drying off in the apartment. Double FAIL.

*how the watery twat, can self-styled hip DVD stores, which stock all 85 episodes of Allo Allo, not stock copies of the best fucking TV show in history? So infuriating. Amazon it is, then.