Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Omnibus Blog; A Prelude

Well, as you can tell I am back in the land of the living - in terms of communication, anyway. I am pleased to tell you that I am typing this blog on my new mobile phone, the very smart and shiny iPhone 4. It is very cool, and I do love it so.

Typically, during the four days that I have been unable to blog, quite a lot has taken place. However, now is not the time to regale you with those details - mainly because it is late, and i just don't have the energy to write about all that went on.
But don't worry, from tomorrow I shall tell all. I will have to break it down into each day as there is quite a lot to tell you, so you're not going to get it all in one go.

But that is tomorrow; for now, let me tell you about today.

I started the day not knowing if my phone would arrive today or not. When I arranged the upgrade last week, I was told that I would get an email confirmation of my order and details of when I might expect to receive it, roughly (and when I mean receive it roughly, I mean approximately - not have it shoved in an orifice!). So far I had not received any email and, although enjoying the steadily increasing feeling of liberation that being without a mobile gives you, I needed to know where my new phone was.
I rang Orange customer services and was told that apparently my phone was out for delivery today - but they couldn't tell me the time window in which I might receive it. The customer services person did say that I would have been sent a text yesterday notifying me of the delivery being due. I politely explained that as my current phone had died, and would not turn on, sending me a text was of little use. However, there was nothing else they could do. Delivery of the phone could only be made to my home address, and if I missed the delivery, only then could I re-arrange it to a different address.
The customer service person then thanked me for calling Orange, and asked if there was anything else they could help me with.

Surprisingly, there wasn't.

And then, my luck changed.

A couple of hours later, my office phone rang. It was a courier driver looking for my home address. He had my iPhone. By some miracle, this driver had delivered to my workplace on a few previous occasions, and he recognised my name. So he rang the office, spoke to me, and I got him to deliver my iPhone to my work.

Result!!!

I spent the last hour or so of my working day setting up my phone, and generally playing with it. On first impressions (and remember; I don't do impressions), it is a tasty bit of kit. I downloaded a few essential Apps - the Blogger App, Facebook, and Endomondo - the sports tracking App.


However, when I got home, I wasn't able to explore my new toy further.
I had been invited over to my friends house in my old village for dinner, and to help them assemble some flat packed furniture. Knowing what fabulous cooks (and people) they are, how could I refuse?

So I didn't.

Dinner was Asian Fusion in origin, and involved chicken and noodles, and sauces and lots of wonderful ingredients. I was given the option of using Chopsticks to eat with, but I couldn't get the hang of them. The closest I got to controlling them was to get the rear of the chopsticks to open and close - that's the end held in my hand. I thought to call this method 'reverse chopstick' - but then thought that it sounded too much like a sexual position.

After dinner, we tackled the furniture. It wasn't the toughest of things to assemble - a table and six chairs - but it was a combined effort, and not the easiest in places.

The hard work finished, I was treated to a bowl of banana in custard, which was very delicious. I did say however, that I would have been just as happy with just a bowl of custard. But that is me.

Having done my good deed by helping out, and by being rewarded with good food and even better company, I said my goodbyes, and came home.

And that was today - the day I rejoined the technological existence of society.


It's good to be back!!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

A Good Day - Though You Wouldn't Know It.

If you had the undeniable pleasure of looking at my handsome face all today, you would have sworn that I was in a bad mood.

To some extent, you would have been right.

I woke up this morning both physically and metaphorically, with a grim feeling of determination. My first 'Tweet' today included an immortal quote from Bender Rodriguez of Futurama fame: "Bite My Shiny, Metal Ass!". That was exactly how I felt about life the universe and everything.

I spent all day at work with my 'serious' face on (I'm still wearing it now), being grimly determined and determinedly grim. Then, as I grimly walked home for lunch, I drop my phone and all the parts that can come away from each other, did - along with a few that shouldn't. My phone still works, but now turns itself off randomly. Although this did nothing to imorove my demeanour, it did prompt me to look into upgrading my phone. As it turned out I was eligible to upgrade, so I did. I upgraded to an IPhone, which is what I have wanted for a while now.

My working day over, I walked home and cooked dinner, which was very nice. In the process, I burnt my thumb on the oven - but that didn't stop my enjoyment of the food.

And that brings me to now. If you were to see me right now, you would say "what's the matter with you?", aswell as "why are you blogging in your socks, boxers, and a t-shirt?"

But I wouldn't care. I decided to write this blog as I was halfway between changing out of my work clothes, and into my home clothes. But none of that is anyone's business but mine.

Tomorrow I shall be back to my normal funny, handsome self - but I will keep an undertone of grim determination.

I like it.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Can't Always Get What You Want.

I've done it again - started with an idea for this blog, and then changed my mind a little way in, in preference of........I don't know what.

I have happily discarded the idea of trying to write a blog to put a smile on the faces of some friends who I note don't seem to be having a good time lately, in favour of no set idea at all. I've gone from having a weak idea to no idea.

Well, that's not strictly true. I do have one idea of what to write about - but that is real rubbish. I was going to write about the tiny war that rages each and every day in my life - the minuscule individual skirmishes that dictate most of my actions.

Let me explain:

Every day a war rages between what I want to happen, and what will happen. It starts as soon as I wake up, with the warmth and comfort of my bed battling the increasing pressure in my bladder. Obviously, the bladder wins that one. I wanted to stay in bed, but had to answer the call of nature.

But although that battle was lost, the war rages on.

For lunch I have a Tesco own brand cup-a-soup. I can heartily recommend the tomato flavour - recommend it as being the one flavour that tastes least like it should. Anyway, the cup-a-soup is the only thing I have during the working day, as this month I have budgeted poorly and am running out of food. I could extend my overdraft and buy lots of nice things to eat, but that will only leave me in the same position next month. So this battle is my appetite fighting my will to stay in control of my finances. My appetite loses this one.

I have my first Sign Language assessment on the 11th Feb, and have told myself that I must practice every night. Herein lies another running battle - between my fear of failing my assessment, and my habit to procrastinate. This battle can go either way - some days the fear wins and I sit down and do a couple of hours practice, and some days it doesn't.

Tonight, it hasn't. But that isn't necessarily a bad thing.

I can't always get what I want. If I did, I'd be massively overdrawn, be failing at Sign Language, and be waking up each morning wet and smelling of wee.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Appetite Vs Memory Multiplied by Dog Personality....and Lazy Lightbulbs

This shouldn't be too long a blog, as I have only got two things to write about.

Now, when it comes to food, I'm not a waster. For example; if I am having soup and a sandwich for lunch (a very nice combo - but not to be confused with soup IN a sandwich, which is an altogether much trickier meal), and am making my sandwich while the soup cooks, any crumbs - of both the bread and the sandwich contents - will be added to the soup while it cooks. If I am just making a sandwich, all crumbs will be swept into the palm of one hand and scroffed. Only peelings ("nothing more than peelings.....") will be discarded.

So knowing now that I hate waste, you can well imagine the nasty shock I got after tonight's dinner. Tonight I had meatballs in pasta, with mushrooms cooked in butter. As I have already declared this on Facebook, many of you will already be aware of this. What you will not be aware of is the fact that I put a chopped onion in with my meatballs, to add a little something to them.

It was onion.

So dinner was consumed very nicely, and then I washed up (good husband material, ladies) and cleaned up. A little while later, I came into the kitchen to make a cup of tea, when I noticed a piece of cooked mushroom on my cooker. I tend to be a bit of a messy chef, so it was no surprise to find this morsel.

With the taste of tonights dinner fresh on my tastebuds, I picked up the bit of mushroom and ate it. As soon as the mushroom entered my mouth, the following happened in a millisecond:

My brain had told my tastebuds that they were about to taste mushroom - possibly with a hint of onion, butter, and Bolognese sauce.

My tastebuds tasted the mushroom - but something was wrong: it didn't taste like mushroom - not like mushroom at all.

Confused, the tastebuds rang my brain and said that that piece of mushroom tasted odd, but they didn't know why. My brain said it would check back through recent archives for any clue as to why the obvious piece of mushroom, wouldn't taste right.

Meanwhile, the piece of mushroom quietly and unassumingly made its way to the back of the mouth to be swallowed.

My brain rang my tastebuds back and said that had discovered why the piece of mushroom tasted odd. Apparently, I (Larry) had sprayed the cooker top with kitchen cleaner with bleach in, before wiping it over. I did this after washing up (according to the memory division, who were just back from lunch break). That piece of mushroom must have been sprayed with bleach, but not picked up by the cleaning cloth. Brain asked the tastebuds where the piece of mushroom was now, as it probably shouldn't be swallowed.

Tastebuds replied that they had last seen the mushroom at the back of the mouth.....

At this point, the muscles used for swallowing said that a suspicious piece of food had just been swallowed and was now on its way to the stomach.

The stomach, upon hearing its name, shouted up asking what the matter was, and what was going on.

Realising that there was nothing to be done now, the tastebuds, brain, and muscles for swallowing all replied in one voice, "oh, nothing - don't worry'.

So yes, I swallowed possibly the cleanest piece of food I've ever eaten - followed by a couple of pints of water.

But that is another problem of mine - I'll eat first, then ask questions. I'm like a dog in that respect; if I'm hungry I don't think about what it is until after I've started eating it. I used to be called 'Larry Leftovers' - for good reason.

I have lazy lightbulbs. There is a definitive variance in the brightness of the bulb in my bedroom light tonight, than there was yesterday. Tonight it is much brighter. I'll tell you how I know: I usually write my blog lying on my bed with my bedside lamp on. Yesterday, I thought I would put on 'big light' too - but it was so dim, as to make no difference really. But tonight when I put 'big light' on it was really bright!
Now what is that about? Is it bulb apathy? How can one bulb be brighter than the previous day? I can understand it getting dimmer, but not brighter.

Maybe its a Benjamin Button bulb - you know the film 'The Secret Life of Benjamin Button'? in which a baby is born as an old man, and as he goes through life he gets younger instead of older. Maybe it is like that with this bulb?

Whatever the reason, it is odd.

Well, this blog was longer than I thought. And I can still taste bleach a little.

Monday, 23 January 2012

V.A.R.B

I bet you are all wondering what V.A.R.B stands for....

Well, it could mean: Viagra Addicts Ravish Boots....

Or it might mean: Vietnamese Anagram Robot Beaten.....

It could even mean: Ventriloquist's Autopsy Reveals Buggery....

However, it doesn't.

In actual fact, V.A.R.B stands for: Voice Activated Random Blog. Yes, once again I have pushed back the boundaries of blogging technology, tripped them up, and stolen their lunch money. Today, for the first time ever, I will be 'writing' my blog without the use of a keyboard!

(If you could all make the sound of a fanfare now please, that would be lovely - thanks.)

You see I have discovered on my phones keypad, a button with a microphone symbol on it. When I press and hold this button, the option to "speak now" appears on screen - and whatever I say is transferred into text. So, I should be able to dictate this blog (or at least the rest of it - everything so far has been typed) quickly and easily. Well, here goes.....

tonight  I went back  to sign language class. This was the first time that I had been back since before christmas. I found that  I had forgotten a lot more than I thought I had.

Okay, I've stopped there and have started typing again because I am having to correct quite a bit. The paragraph above is not how my phone translated what I said - I had to go back and manually correct the mistakes. I am speaking slowly, and only three words at a time - but still there are mistakes. To give you an idea, I will type a short paragraph, and then repeat it exactly using the voice recognition stuff.

(Typed): It has been rainy today, and fairly cold. I had sausage and mash for tea. It was very nice. Tomorrow my car is going in for its M.O.T. I hope it passes without trouble.

(Spoken): it has beans rainy today and barely cold. I had sausage and mash 4 t. it was very nice. tomorrow in my car is going in for it's m o t. I hope it coffee is without trouble.

You get an idea of the errors the software makes. In fairness, by the time I have corrected the mistakes, I could have typed the sentence myself.

it seems the boundaries have got up kick me in the nuts and blow my nose  (spoken)

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Peanuts, Wombat, Pub Names, Wrong Sexual Practices, and Medical Based Embarrassing Recognition....

You are going to have to bear with me, as I have a lot to try and remember. If I tell you that I have had to make notes, you can appreciate the amount of information I am trying to recall. All I can say is that this blog relates to this weekend, and the House Party I went to.

Firstly, I have kept up with my walking regime and have walked 24.77 miles this weekend. This included 2 walks on Saturday - one of which was spent in the company of The Best Dogs In The World. So far this year I have walked 81 miles, which is almost as much as I walked for exercise in 2011.

The rest of my thoughts of the weekend are consumed by the memories stored from the House Party, which was thrown by two lovely friends of mine Alyn & Emma. I had been invited to come along to the party, stay over, and then have lunch with them today. So I did.

I arrived just before 8pm, and found that the front door was open and my hosts were nowhere to be seen. Luckily there were some other guests already in the living room (or lounge), so I went an introduced myself. These people I met were Alyn's Brother Thomas and his girlfriend Steph who live in Exeter, and Alyn's friend Dan, who likes to be called Lenny, and lives in Wales. Actually, I don't know if he likes being called Lenny, or if that is just what everyone else always calls him - for all I know, he could hate it.

So after we did the polite stuff - where do you live, what do you do etc. (it turns out that Thomas works for the same company in Exeter as a woman I met for a date last year - small world!)  we were getting along fine, and an unspoken agreement regarding the level of comfortableness we had with each other was set in place. By this time, Alyn and Emma - with baby Fern in tow - had joined us, so I nicked Fern for a cuddle and continued chatting. We had some background music to add ambience, and a slideshow of pictures of Alyn and Emma from past and present, to add a narcissistic quality to the evening. In truth, the photos gave us plenty to talk about.

Now without going into too much detail, there was a healthy amount of banter flying around, and some of the topics covered included:

Me being, or looking sinister (or both) and the opportunity therein for me to open a sinister sweet shop with blacked out windows.

The striking resemblance Alyn had in his youth to the legendary Porn star, Ron Jeremy. And by resemblance, I mean facially - I can't vouch for any other similarities that may or may not exist.

The merits of perversely wrong sexual acts such as the 'Donkey Punch', the 'angry Spiderman', the 'Superman', and the 'Space Dock' - and possible "adjustments" that could be made to some or all of these to improve them. Improve them for who - I don't know....

Suitable names for a pub that I (still continuing the sinister theme) might want to open. These included, 'The Cheeky Sniff', and 'The Peanut Spitter'. The inspiration for 'The Peanut Spitter' came from another friend - Ruth - who turned up at the party and was eating peanuts, and we joked that she spat one out. She was only eating the whole peanuts and said that she didn't like the half ones. She also reckoned that if you shook the tub, all the whole peanuts would come to the top. Obviously, a lot of wine had been drunk by then, because she was talking rubbish.

Some of the other people said they agreed with her on the peanut thing - but they must have all been pissed too.

Now, Lenny works as a trainee theater assistant/operative (I forget the proper term) and had assisted on many types of operations - transplants, bypasses, amputations...and some gynaecological ones. There was an awkward moment when Ruth heard this, and immediately asked Lenny if he had worked at the Gynaecology clinic at the local hospital. Luckily, Lenny hadn't - but Ruth went awfully pale for a moment when she thought Lenny was going to say to her "Put your legs wide in the air.....yes! I thought I recognised you!"

Throughout the evening, more friends arrived - some friends I had known when I lived in the village, and some of Alyn and Emma's friends. A couple called Jeremy and Lottie joined us briefly - in which time I managed to ignore Jeremy's name and call him Thomas on a few occasions. Jeremy was aged in his late forties - but after he had left, I was told that he was thought to be younger than me! I wasn't having any of that - there's no way I was older than Jeremy!

This was backed up by the fact that later on Steph said that she thought that I was A) about 35, and B) lovely. She went on to say that she would mention me to her friend 'Fit Becky', as she (Steph) thought that Becky would like me too.

Yes, Steph had been drinking a lot by that stage too.

The night whizzed by, and when it came to retire for the night we discovered it was 2am! I was sleeping on the corner sofa which, although very comfortable, was quite hard to sleep on because I'm not used to sleeping with my body in a semi circle. Plus the heating was on, so I was roasting! Not that I am ungrateful - it was very kind of them to let me stay over.

This morning I awoke slightly the worse for wear. I think it was the whisky I had just before going to bed. However, the pounding headache was soon alleviated by a fabulous cooked breakfast. The plan was to take Alyn's son Dylan out for a walk in the fresh air, and then come back and have roast dinner. I nipped home to change into my walking clobber, and I agreed to meet Alyn, Dylan and Lenny at a pre-arranged place.

In due course we met up, and took our walk. Along the way our talk had an animal theme to it - we discussed how to enrage ostriches, the insecurity of a self conscious Wombat, and how the Patagonian Fainting Goat thwarts predators by fainting. This is similar to how the Possum feigns death, but is much less convincing. However, Fainting still works for the goat as the predators generally no longer want to eat the goat after seeing how pathetic it is.
This is similar to the Bolivian Pleading Toad which, when cornered by a predator, puts on such a miserable display of begging for its life (including wringing its front feet together), that the predator walks away as this is the only way to stop the pathetic whining.

Soon enough the walk was over, and we returned home to have lunch. Lenny and I assisted in the preperation of the roast by peeling and chopping vegetables. And expertly done they were too.

Lunch was amazing - yet again I was inspired to expand my culinery skills.

And then that was it - time to go home. I truly had an amazing time: I made new friends, saw some very special old friends, and discovered what a 'Donkey Punch' is.

What a great weekend!

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Addiction, Party

Only a short blog today; I think I might be becoming a little addicted to the walking that I'm doing.

Most of you will know that I walk three times over the weekend, for a total of 21 miles. Yesterday I walked 7 miles, and walked another 7 miles this morning. However, this afternoon I was a bit bored - so I went out and walked a further 5.84 miles! And I've still got another 7 miles to walk tomorrow. If I'm not careful, I'll spend all my time walking - and then where will I be?

Blooming miles from home!

Mind you, it is all doing me good so for the moment I will risk the addiction...

But enough about that - tonight I'm off out to a house warming party. And I'm staying over, so I can have a drink. I haven't been out in ages, so am looking forward to it.

Mind you, I've got nothing to wear......

And that is about it for this blog. I'll let you know all the gossip from the party in tomorrow's blog - providing its not all about me....

Friday, 20 January 2012

Nostril Hair Euthanasia......and Thinking I'm Doctor Doolittle

In the words of Albert Einstein's long suffering wife Ada, I just don't get it.

Nose hair - grey nose hair to be precise.

I am at that stage in life when the list of parts of me that need trimming gets (ironically) a little longer. To Fingernails, toenails, goatee beard, and eyebrows (they're more family trait - you should see my sister!), I now have to add nose hair. Actually, the correct term I suppose is Nostril hair - as Nose hair would suggest a hairy nose, which would just look weird.

Anyway for a while now, I have occasionally been of the appearance that I have a spider hiding up each nostril, with only their legs visible and so need to trim them.

In addition to this, as a general rule, some of the hair on my body is turning grey. I'm happy to say that this only appears to be happening in the Northern Hemisphere of my body, and as yet everything below the 'equator' is as it should be, pigment-wise.

But I've noticed something weird about my nostril hair. As we all know the hairs in our nostrils are sensitive and we know when something doesn't feel right. If you got stabbed up the nostril with a javelin, it would be the hairs in your nostril that would first alert you to the fact that something wasn't right.

Well sometimes, I get the sensation that one of my nostril hairs doesn't feel right - you could almost say it was painful, although that wouldn't be the right term.

Now being a bloke, whenever I get this sensation about my nostril hair, my one and only thought is to rip it out. I don't waste time rushing to the nearest mirror to see if I've got a small pony stuck up there, I just grab hold with my thumb and forefinger and yank it out. And what I have found is that everytime, the irritating hair I pull out is a grey one. Now why would that be?

I can't understand why the grey hair would irritate me when it is no different except in pigment to the other hairs in my nose? Could it be that this is a nostril hair form of Euthanasia? Is it possible that in hair terms, once a hair turns grey it has stopped being useful? Does it then automatically release a chemical that irritates me so I rip it out, ending its existence? If that was the case, why am I not frantically clawing at my head? That is covered in grey hairs! In hair terms, parts of my head look like the cast of "Cocoon".

It only happens with my nostril hair - I get the sensation of a nostril hair irritating me, and it's sat there saying "I'm here, kill me! Do it now!"

Weird.....

I'll tell you what else is weird; my apparent inability to walk past a field of cows without saying "moo!" to the bovine closest to me.

I did it today as I went on a walk. There was a field with some cows scattered about in it (no sense of organisation, cows), and as I walked past there was a cow just on the other side of the fence. Well, I couldn't help it - as I drew alongside this cow, I said "moo!" in a loud voice. But not just in my voice - I didn't just speak the word in my normal voice and tone, oh no. No, I had to try and make it sound like a proper cow mooes.

But why? What was I expecting? Did I think that in that one moment I would have cracked the secrets of cattle language, and would be able to converse with cows? Would I then become some sort of Bovine ambassador - bridging the gap between cattle and man?

To be honest, I didn't expect anything - the cow just ignored me. And its a good job too - imagine how shocked you'd be if you walked past a field with cows in, and the nearest cow to you suddenly said "afternoon."
You'd mess yourself!

Now that I think about it, I've also made animal noises at sheep, chickens, ducks, and goats in my time. I'm fairly safe in saying that we have all done it at one point or another in our lives. But I honestly don't know why -  for some reason when faced with an animal that grunts or bleats or mooes, us humans feel compelled to imitate it in the hope of making a connection. And if by the miracle that is coincidence the creature makes a noise a few seconds after we do, we convince ourselves that we were communicating with it.

Of course, it is interesting to note too that we never make noises at lions or tigers or anything that might rip our face off......

I can't talk to the animals. And neither can you.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Body Equivalent Fire Drills...and, Enough Now.

I don't understand my body.

Today at work my nose started running, for no apparent reason. When I say running, I don't mean like when a child's nose runs and they get that 'double snail trail' thing going on - but I was having to blow my nose every few minutes.

What I don't get is why. I don't have a cold (I did flirt with a cold a few weeks ago - but like everything else I flirt with, nothing came of it), so why should my nose run like that? The only possible answer is that my Immune system was running a drill.

As you all know, our immune system protects and defends us from infection etc. It is our bodies defence force - like the U.S. Army, but without the weeing on prisoners - and like any good defence force it must be constantly ready for action. One way to keep it at maximum readiness is to run drills from time to time, and that is what happened today. My body simulated an infection, and produced white blood cells which fight the infection and that is what the Mucus is made of.

At least that is what I think happens - I didn't take biology, I took needlework.(I made a pencil case)

So the whole snotty nose thing was a drill. Admittedly, its one of the better 'body drills' to endure. The worst one is the one after a curry, where the bowel holds (or not) its own 'fire drill' and sees how fast it can evacuate. That's not very nice. And its 72 seconds, by the way.

Tonight, I was very lucky to be visited by some very special people. My ex girlfriends children, Harriet and Stan came round to see me, along with Harriet's friend Heidi. They stayed for about an hour before going off to the pub for.....some reason or another.

It was so lovely to see them, for obvious reasons I don't see them very often, and it was really nice to chat to them again. To be honest, I was a little sad because at the time when they were part of my life, my relationship with them was not the best, but I do miss them, and part of me wishes I could have that time again. But I can't.

All too soon they had to go, but have promised to come and see me again. We are going to have a curry night next month, which will be really cool - provided it is not followed by a fire drill.

Seeing them has also made me realise that I need to stop being hung up on the past. What has happened has happened, and I need to move on. I want to move on - I don't want to keep hurting, keep having the regret, keep wishing I could get back what I never will. I have to let go, I need to let go. I'm scared that I will never find someone again - but until I release my past, I'll never let anyone else get close enough.

So enough now, no more. What's done cannot be undone. I leave what was behind, and look towards what will be.

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Milestone

Today this blog has reached another Milestone - 10,000 page views. That equates to approximately 32 pages views per blog (yesterdays was blog number 310 - 310 x 32 = 9,920). Now while that isn't the largest following in the world - the Largest following ever recorded was a Blue Whale that followed a single Krill home, smashed its doors in and then ate it and its entire family - it does show that I have a dedicated group of followers, whose loyalty means more to me than I can say.


It also says that on average, 32 of you every day had nothing better to do.


What has also become apparent is that I have only 55 days more daily blogging to do before I get a break. I'm not sure what I am going to do with the extra hour to an hour and a half a night I will have - perhaps I will find a new hobby to throw myself into. A swimming pool full of Lingerie models - I've always wanted to throw myself into that........


If you think about it, this blog has been a little like a relationship. At first it was fresh and exciting, then as time went on, it settled into a rhythm of comfortableness. Now it's become a chore and I am a little resentful of it and can't wait to be rid of it.

Who says romance is dead? Single people.

Going back to my followers (I sound like a cult leader now), I still can't work out how I get random people from across the globe reading my blog. Yesterday, I had someone from Brussels read a blog from March 2011, and I have had readers from Panama, Mexico, South Africa, Peru, a shed load from the United States of America, Russia, all over the place. I am intrigued as to what you have to put into a search engine to end up on my blog (apart from "Drivel", "Rubbish" etc.).


Incidentally, wouldn't it be fabulous if a Search Engine was the ultimate modification for your car? You just get in, say where you want to go to i.e. "work" or "Brother's House", and WHAM! you disappear and then reappear at your destination. Think the car from 'Back To the Future', but instead of time travel, you just got anywhere in the current time instantly. Well, I guess that is a sort of time travel - but you know what I mean.

That entire paragraph popped into my head as I typed "search engine" in the previous paragraph. Isn't the mind incredible?


Although my blog will be going from "Every Day" to "Every Now and Then", I hope that you will keep following me. In truth it is likely to be in your best interests, as I will only write when I have something worth writing about and therefore the quality of my blog should improve. I cannot make any promises though, and you should all be prepared for a continuing stream of written garbage - only less frequent. Maybe not a stream, more like a brook - or a trickle even. A trickle of written garbage - or a leaky tap of non-read worthy  nonsense.

However you want to describe it, I do appreciate your loyalty.

So, here I am typing this at work while I wait for a call back regarding a delivery that should have been made, but apparently wasn't. I know the goods in question left us here, and have asked the haulier to get me a proof of delivery. I hope that my customer has a "bod" that works in his goods in that has received the goods in question, but has not updated his system. If it turns out that the haulier has lost it, then I might.


Update: The haulier has a signed proof of delivery - so hopefully someone in Liverpool will be getting a punch shortly.


This means I can also go home soon, and won't have to stay here waiting......I seem to do a lot of waiting here, I don't know why. And what is on the cards for me tonight? mainly, Two MASSIVE jacket potatoes - but also more Sign Language revision, and a bit of chilling out. I'll have more time on my hands as I have already written my blog for today.


One final note: I am sorry that recently my blogs have been a jumble of random ideas and not about a specific subject. I'm just not getting any real inspiration lately - perhaps my mind is elsewhere.....


Anyway, I'm sorry. I will try harder.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Cold

I'm struggling for ideas here people. To be honest, I'll be glad when the 16th March gets here and this every day blog becomes an every now and then blog.

It doesn't help that I am cold - I've got the heating on, but for some reason my feet and legs, and my left hand are cold - as if they are in a draft. But I'm upstairs on my bed and the windows are closed with the curtains drawn. And if you want to know what my right hand is doing, it is cradling my head and neck as I type this. I will definitely be having a hot water bottle tonight.

And the coldness will contonue - at least tomorrow. And I'm working most of tomorrow in our warehouse, which will be freezing. It was really cold in there today, so I shall be wearing extra layers, and smearing Deep Heat all over.

There's a nice image for you.

But I am afraid to say that I have no definitive subject to talk to you about, and for that I am sorry. But not so sorry that I am going stay lying on this bed with parts of my body getting colder and colder from the mysterious draft that I cannot find.

Maybe I'm imagining all this - or maybe it is all a dream.......

Bugger - It's not.

Monday, 16 January 2012

Crush, Hair, Junkie, Speccy, Advice.

I have absolutely no idea what to write about tonight. Subsequently, this is likely to be one of the best blogs I've written in a long time.....

Well that's me set up for a great fall - let's get on and see how much of a hash I can make of this. Firstly: Sign Language. My Sign Language classes resume next Monday the 23rd, and just like when I was back at school, I've only tonight started doing the revision that I've had three weeks so far to do. I've just done an hour testing myself, and my brain is a bit scrambled. Fortunately, unlike when I was at school, I now no longer have a crush on Michaela Holloran. But man, was she lovely....she had long(ish) flowing dark hair, and was very pretty - and I was kidnapped by her beauty, and then blindfolded by her voice, before being driven to a secret location and tortured by her eyes. That year Chaka Khan had the song "I feel for you", and to this day whenever I hear that song it takes me back to that time.
I obviously had a thing for dark hair, because my first love (and subsequent woman I married, and eventual psycho hose beast from hell), Samantha Warren had dark hair. From memory I also fancied the Argentine female tennis star Gabriella Sabitini - although she did have the look of being one of those 'over hairy' types, who if you saw naked would look like an inverted ZZ Top pyramid (if ZZ top dyed their beards black). I suspect that personal topiary was not a top priority for Ms Sabitini. Of course I wouldn't dare to cast speculation on the neatness of Michaela Holloran, and as for my ex wife - let's not go there (which is so what I should have said!).

So, that's an old school mate insulted - not the best idea in the year of our 25 year reunion......

So, going back to my original point: revision, and homework and all that stuff. Why does every generation do the same thing? Why do we all leave our homework or revision to as late as possible? It's not as if trying to write your history homework on the bus into school on the day its meant to be handed in ever made anyone feel good is it? Unless you were a geek adrenaline junkie.....

Yes, the geek adrenaline junkie - two wimpish to go base jumping, rock climbing without ropes, or sky diving, but they'll risk that A* by finishing that English essay in English class on the day it is due whilst waiting for the teacher to arrive. Oh yes, that's a rollercoaster thrill ride right there!

I don't know if I was a geek at school - some people might say I am one now, but at school I'm not so sure. In my day there weren't such fashionable terms for the spectacle wearer, or the academically gifted but socially inept such as "geek" or "nerd". In my day, we were all clumped together under one reference: "losers", and as such were universally accepted targets for abuse. Every day I used to get called "four eyes" or "speccy twat" - and that was before I had left the house for school. My parents were mean.....

But we all have a past, we all have moments in our lives that we don't look back on with fondness. But those moments go towards making us the people we are today just as much as the moments we remember joyously. And you can't go back and change any of it, so why worry? It's the future that we can shape, so that is where our focus should be.

Oh, and on the present - we shouldn't go wandering through life looking into the distance, because you'll miss what is going on now, or might even fall down a manhole and break a leg.

In the spiritual sense of the word.

So by all means look to the future, but keep one eye on the present. Yes, you'll look like you've got a lazy eye, but at least you won't lose focus.

All this advice is available in my new book - "Do Stuff To Change Stuff! - But Once You've Changed It, Leave It. Or Not - It's Up To You."
You'll find it in the 'Self Help' section. Actually, I shouldn't have told you that - I should have left you to find it yourself.

Well, this blog appears to have got bizarrely out of hand, so I think it is time to finish it. I'm sorry for the random rubbishness of it - unless you liked it, in which case I aim to please....

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Rude Cyclists, Communicating With Dogs, and Swearing at People Who Can't Hear Me.

I have to be quick, as I am off out in a bit. Yes, I am a Social Butterfly.

Yes, I know that social butterfly shouldn't have had Capital first letters.

This morning I did my third walk of the weekend. I walked 8.5 miles - but the sport tracking software only recorded 7.48 miles because it was at that point that the battery on my phone died. But I did really walk 8.5 miles today, bringing my weekend total to 21 miles.
The route that I walk is a well used walk, and I pass many other people along the way. As is customary with anyone who has any resemblance of manners, polite acknowledgments are exchanged as you pass. This morning, it was "Good Morning". As I walked along, I exchanged such greetings with dog walkers, joggers, and families out for a walk - the children on their bikes and the parents walking in front or behind. However I discovered that one set of path users had no manners what so ever: Adult Cyclists.

On three occasions I was passed in the opposite direction by a couple of cyclists. I presume they go out in pairs because they know that one of them will end up getting punched in the face because of their mannerless, self importance obsessed attitude. Each time I encountered these cyclists, I said good morning. Each time, I was ignored.
Now I'm sure that cyclists have a lot to think about: Is their helmet on straight; are they wearing sunglasses (irrespective of the weather); do their lycra cycling shorts enhance the size of their genitals whilst at the same time protecting them in the event of riding over a pothole; are the going in the right direction; etc. etc. However, it doesn't take much effort to say "Good Morning" or even just "Morning".

It did annoy me that I got no response from them. I will accept the weak possibility that they might not have heard me. That's okay - next time I'll shout my greetings at them, and hope that they ride into a clump of stinging nettles.

As you know, I love dogs. And therefore have no shame in admitting that when I meet a dog (a dog that is friendly and comes up to me and says hello) I talk to it in the most ridiculous two tone voice, with which I ask it questions and then answer them for it.
For example, this morning on my walk I saw a dog walker approach me. He had a West Highland Terrier with him, and this dog came running up to me and jumped up with its tail wagging. So, the silly voiced questions started:

(In a deep voice) "Hello, you're a lovely dog aren't you? (high voice) yes you are!"
(deep voice) "are you having a nice walk? (high voice) you are, aren't you!"

I can't explain why I do this, but I guess part of it is that dogs respond better to an excited tone of voice than a dull one. The other reason could be that I'm mental.

I like football, and I watch it on TV. But when my team (Arsenal) are playing, I go mental and scream and shout at the telly everytime they miss a pass or waste an opportunity. I know they can't hear me, but still I do it. The air in my lounge was every colour of the rainbow due to the colourful language I was using.
It's not clever to swear, but somehow "Oh do try a bit harder chaps - that really isn't good enough" doesn't really convey the sentiment enough.

Anyway, that's it for today's blog - I'm off out.

Ciao!

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Two, Twelve, Four, Eighteen, One.......Millions!

Today has been all about numbers.

Two, is the number of walks that I have been on today. I am trying to do three walks a weekend - one on a Friday afternoon (most weeks I finish work around 1pm), one on Saturday, and one on Sunday. I wasn't able to do my Friday walk this week, so I decided to do two walks today, and one tomorrow.

Twelve, is the number of miles I have walked today. In fact I've actually walked Twelve and a half miles today - this morning I walked 7.09 miles on my usual walk, and then this afternoon I went on a new walk, and covered 5.41 miles.

Four, is the number of companions I had with me on my walk this afternoon. My walk started in the village I used to live in, so I enquired as to the availability of The Best Dogs In The World (for those of you unfamiliar with these, there is an photo album dedicated to them on my Facebook page), to accompany me.

Eighteen, is our combined number of legs, because I also took out a friend of The Best Dogs In The World.

One, is me - who has had a really nice day today.

And millions? That is the number that I still love those dogs. As I was sat on the sofa with them, and they were snuggled in next to me sleeping, I couldn't have been happier.

Friday, 13 January 2012

Time Lapse Blogtography

Hello, and welcome to a slightly different blog. It's not different in the way I have written it, or in the subject matter (the usual load of waffle and pish - to use an old expression), but there is definitely something going on that hasn't happened before.

Those amongst you who have been following my blog from the beginning will remember that I briefly dabbled in the dark art that is video blogging. There was a degree of success in that, although I will admit that sitting down and thinking about what I type invariably ensures a better end product than when I stand in front of a video camera and try to waffle. It's not much of a better end product, but at least I'm honest.


But what has this got to do with today's blog? Well.....today I am again being filmed whilst I blog - but this time I am writing my blog while being filmed. And its not just any old sort of filming, oh no: this is Time Lapse filming. As I type, my mobile is taking snap shots of me every five seconds. When I have finished typing this blog I will add the time lapse video of my writing my blog so you can all see the weird facial expressions I pull as the creative juices churn out the rubbish that I type. I have absolutely no idea how the time lapse video will turn out - but it is a new app on my phone, so I am going to experiment.


So, now that we all know what is going on, let me start today's blog:



I'm a little peeved to be honest. I was hoping to finish early enough to go and do my 7 mile exercise walk. The walk takes me approximately an hour and a half to do, so having one eye on the sunset time (I don't really want to have to walk in the dark), I had hoped to be out of here by 1 - 2pm latest. To be fair, I usually manage to get away early on a Friday - but not this week it would appear. We have some stock that needs to be QC checked, so won't be leaving anytime soon. It's not the end of the world, it just means that I'll have to do two 7 mile walks tomorrow. In case you are wondering why I am doing so much walking, it is purely and exercise thing. I suffer with a bad back so stuff like running is out of the question, but walking I can manage. I have got a bit squidgy around the middle recently (since the age of about 30 I suspect), and I want to get back to my former trim (well, less squidgy) self if I can. So every weekend - and potentially every day when the nights get longer - I will be walking as much as I can.

Being at work, I am able to write today's blog on my pc, rather than use the app on my phone. Whilst I am pleased about this, using the pc is not without problems. The current problem I am facing is the fact that the blogger website keeps thinking that I have logged out, and it tells me that I have to log back in to continue writing my blog. If I click "ok" to log back in, I lose all the typing I have done since the website last saved my blog (it automatically saves your work as you type every few minutes). So what I have to do is copy everything I have typed so far, click "OK", log back in, open the blog I was typing (which is saved as a draft) and then paste everything I had copied back into the blog template and carry on. At this moment in time, I have done this four times.


I'm just going to pull a few faces at my phone - keep an eye out for them in the time lapse video.

That's that done. :-)


Okay, what else to talk about? As you might appreciate, I need to be filmed typing this blog for quite some time in order for the time lapse video to be of any decent length. I suppose I could just sit here pretending to type something, but that would just look sad. Whereas filming myself typing my blog and then posting the video of me filming myself typing this blog on my blog, isn't?

I just had to pause the recording then to check how long it had been going - 24 minutes already! And then when I went to put my phone back in the same position to record (stood in my desk tidy), I couldn't get it to sit straight. As I had already pressed record, there might be one or two images at a weird angle.


So let's get on and finish this blog so I can upload the video. I went round to my friends house last night for a catch up. We briefly discussed his upcoming wedding - I am going to be an Usher, and have absolutely no idea what my responsibilities are. However, I do get to wear a proper wedding suit with tails and all that and I am really looking forward to it. If you think I look handsome in my everyday clothes, wait until you see me in a wedding suit - I will blow you away!

If you don't think I look handsome normally, you have no taste.


We also touched on the subject of the stag night, which I am also looking forward to - partly because I don't have to organise it. I cannot say where or when it will be, because I don't know. But it is all good.


Right, that's enough typing - here is the time lapse video of me writing this blog:


Well, this is embarrassing. Apparently there is a problem uploading the video to this blog. But fear not - those of you who know me on Facebook can see the video on my Facebook page. I will post it right after I post this blog.

Apologies for not being able to put the video in here.






Thursday, 12 January 2012

Parsnip And Turnip

I have two very special people in my life who - to save their embarrassment - shall be known as Parsnip and Turnip for the duration of this blog.

I've not known Parsnip and Turnip very long really - only as long as I have been living where I am now - but they have become very good friends of mine, and very dear to me. They are a bit hard to describe, but I'll have a go:

Parsnip is a bit like me in that they are a worrier at times, and will keep thinking about stuff for way too long - either before the event, or for long afterwards. Parsnip is very good at their job, but works far too hard and brings work home too much. Parsnip needs to find a way to let off steam.
Parsnip has a heart of gold, and would do anything to help if it was needed. In fact, Parsnip would put others before itself everytime. Parsnip has a great wit and sense of humour, and can exchange banter with the best of them. Most of my most precious.memories in recent times have been created in the Company of Parsnip and her Fiance. I have met many people a lot worse than Parsnip - but very few better.

Turnip, is a bit of a mystery really. I only met Turnip through Parsnip, but Turnip made a huge impact on me - mainly because my normally hilarious sense of humour didn't appear to raise any sort of smile on Turnip's face. And in a weird way, I liked it.
I don't know much about Turnip's background, and have only had my personal experience to go on, but from what I have seen so far I can tell that Turnip has the appearance of having a fun loving, little bit crazy temperament - but underneath I know that Turnip is a hugely caring and kind person who cares massively about those people important to it - especially Parsnip.
The trouble is, is that Turnip is also very attractive, and great to be around - which I find very pleasantly distracting. Sadly, we met in the wrong lifetime - but if things were different, they would be different.

So there you have Parsnip and Turnip - two very special people who have made my life immeasurably better ever since they came into it.

Thanks guys xxx

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Not a Baby, Not Tyler, Not Even Prince Charlie!

Hello!

I think that is the first time I've started this blog with a greeting - you lot must think me a really ignorant git.

Maybe - but what do you know.....

You find me in a very good mood. I am pleased to say that I appear (in panto every year) to have recovered from the cripplingly painful bad back which threatened to keep me bed ridden. I still don't know what I did to it, but I have a theory - a theory which I will test this coming weekend, and will reveal (myself to old ladies) the results next week.

But my recovery from back pain is not the reason I am in such a good mood. There is another reason....

I have received confirmation of the date of this years Scotland trip! Huzzah!

Every year, me and (some guys from school, had a band and we tried real hard. Jimmy quit, jodie got married - should have known we'd never get far) a few friends go up to the Highlands of Scotland for a week. We do a bit of walking, have a lot of laughs, and generally have an incredible time.
I love Scotland - the scenery, the remoteness, the grandeur, everything. And the people I go with are just the best in the world. One of them is my best friend, and the others aren't.

But they are very special people.

So, later this year I am off to BONNIE Scotland - just to clarify the title of this blog - and I can't wait.

My bad back is gone, and I know when I'm going to Scotland - what a fab day this has been!

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Let's Play....Hypochondia Dominoes!

Firstly, I have composed this blog early, as I will be in too much pain later to write it at my usual time.

Why will I be in pain? Because I will be lying on my bed which is the only place in my house where I can write my blog using the App on my phone without losing signal.

But WHY will I be in pain? Because I have managed to do something to my back which has resulted in me being in constant pain - standing up, sitting down, lying down, on the toilet, off the toilet, walking, talking, thinking - pretty much every conceivable activity and position known to man, woman and beast hurts. I am in pain now, as I type this - but this pain is more bearable than the pain I get lying down. The problem is, that because I do not know what I have done to my back, I do not know exactly what is wrong.

And because of this lack of knowledge, the section of my brain that controls fear and worrying has started filling in the blanks......

Allow me to explain: Actually, it doesn't matter if you allow me to or not - you can't stop me, so I will explain anyway:
I have been experiencing sharp stabbing pain in the muscles on the left hand side of my back. I have been getting these when I move, or get up, or shift position. My first thoughts have been 'Oh, I've pulled a muscle in my back'.
Then I started noticing, occasional pain when I breathed in - this is plausible as the muscles on my back cover the back of my lungs, so as my lungs fill and my chest cavity expands these muscles move causing me pain. However, the pain I have been feeling has been at the side or front of my chest. Therefore, I automatically assume that I might have a punctured lung caused by a broken rib which I have previously mistaken for a pulled muscle in my back.

More recently, I have been getting a 'prickly' sensation across my chest. This only lasts for a few seconds, but it is a little itchy, and largely worrying. Now I'm thinking that along with my punctured lung, I could also be experiencing the early warning signs of an imminent heart attack. The fact that I have been drinking a lot of coffee lately - coffee which in large quantities can give you palpitations, and assorted other symptoms - is merely a coincidence. I'm going to have a heart attack. Probably on the toilet, like Elvis.

More recently, I have been getting a 'prickly' sensation across my chest. This only lasts for a few seconds, but it is a little itchy, and largely worrying. Now I'm thinking that along with my punctured lung, I could also be experiencing the early warning signs of an imminent heart attack. The fact that I have been drinking a lot of coffee lately - coffee which in large quantities can give you palpitations, and assorted other symptoms - is merely a coincidence. I'm going to have a heart attack. Probably on the toilet, like Elvis.

Furthermore, when I go to the toilet to do a "number two", I get pain in the muscles used to strain. These are the same muscles around the lower back which are probably the cause of my back pain, but as far as I am concerned, I might also have bowel cancer.



So I've got pain in my back, a punctured lung, the early symptoms of a heart attack, and probable bowel cancer.

Or that is what the worrying, paranoid part my brain wants me to think. I am definitely in a lot of pain, and am not getting much sleep, but it's only a bad back.

Incidentally, I do not mean to make light of any of the illnesses or injuries mentioned above. They are all awful things to have happen, and if anyone reading this has close experience of any of those, I meant no offence.

 Of course, if it turns out that it isn't just a bad back, and they find me contorted in pain on the toilet seat clutching my chest, I'd like the following inscription on my Headstone:

"Me and my big mouth!"



Monday, 9 January 2012

I'd Have Never Had Made It Through The War

I'm hungry.

I've been hungry for pretty much most of the day - except for breakfast (cup of tea and two Weetabix), lunch (Cup-A-Soup), and Dinner (Jacket Potato and Beans.

The trouble is, that I have exhausted my December wages, and have only got enough food in to (just about) last me until next payday, when I shall once again stock my cupboards with a multitude of edible delights.

However, until that time, I have to ration what I eat. The problem with that is that I'm eating less than I am used to. That is not without its benefits - I do weigh 16st 6lbs (230 lbs) - but it is difficult to maintain. For example; after tonights dinner of Jacket Potato and beans, I was still hungry - so I opened and consumed a tin of tuna. That tuna should have been destined to be another meal over the coming days, but now I will have to rethink my meal options. Because of tonight I may well have to end up eating pasta with Wholegrain mustard one night.

My only hope is that my appetite adjusts quickly to this enforced rationing. I think it will - and the benefits will be two fold; not only will I lose the flab that clings to my gut like a teenager clings to stupidity, but when I come to buy more groceries I will either spend less because I eat less, or spend what I normally spend - but see the food last twice as long!

Everybody wins!

But mainly me.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Ignoring The Signs

Whatever you do, while you read this blog, don't think about Elephants.

You're thinking about them, aren't you? The moment you read the word 'Elephants', an image of an Elephant appeared in your head.

And that is what this blog is about. Not Elephants, but not doing what we are told.

I have an armchair at the end of my bed, which had its back to a radiator and faced my bed. Today I decided to turn it through 180 degrees so that it now faces the wall with its back against the foot of my bed. The idea being that when I sit in that chair to practice Sign Language, or think about what to write in my blog, looking at a blank wall will not distract me and therefore aid concentration. As it happens my inspiration for today's blog came from the back of said armchair and had nothing to do with the blank wall.

There is a label on the back of the chair that indicates that the materials used to upholster the chair are resistant to fire. They are not fire proof, just fire resistant. I have taken a photo of the label for you.

Now there are certain people in society (lets call them 'morons') who would look at that label and see it as a challenge. They would want to find out just how "resistant" that upholstery was, and would not be satisfied with the 'claims' made by the label. They would argue that yes, the upholstery on the chair may well be resistant to a solitary dropped cigarette or lone match - but what about a blowtorch? Or perhaps a whole pack of lit cigarettes that just happened fall out of the mouth of a would be Guiness World Record breaker who, after hours of trying to force approximately 801 cigarettes (I believe 800 is the current record) together to be smoked, passed out from a combination of exhaustion and boredom.

But although we cannot legislate for stupidity, we must accept that the ambiguity of the label doesn't help. It doesn't give enough information - or isn't clear enough. If, rather than just having a picture of a lit cigarette and a burning match with the word 'RESISTANT' on the label, it said:

'If you are stupid enough to let a lit match, a burning cigarette, or fire of any kind touch this chair it will burn. Maybe not immediately, but it will burn. And then so will your house, and then you. You have a smoke alarm, yes? What do you mean 'what's a smoke alarm?' '

Then people would be much more careful. Don't you think?

There is a part of my local town centre that used to be a road, but is now pedestrianised, with two "NO ENTRY" signs at either end. In spite of this, every day several motorists merrily ignore those signs and drive through the pedestrianised area. In this instance the sign is clear, but there is no indication of consequence. What should happen is that there should be a message written on the floor that the motorists could read. Something like this:

IF YOU

CAN READ THIS

AND ARE DRIVING

YOU WILL

GET A FINE.

NOW SMILE

FOR THE CAMERA

At the end of the message is a camera that photographs the car registration, and hey presto! A lot more drivers who previously thought that certain road signs didn't apply to them, suddenly would discover they do.

All we need is clearer signs. If a sign says "Danger of Death", change it to "Certainty of Death - YOU WILL DIE"

Just notch the clarity up a bit, and we will all be saved a whole lot of trouble.

Are you still thinking about Elephants?

Saturday, 7 January 2012

The Pitter Patter of Tiny Furry Feet

I definitely want to get a dog. Two if possible.

I went on my usual walk today - actually it is a bit longer than my usual walk, as I have now discovered how far 3.5 miles from my house is and can now do a round trip of 7 miles. Previously I was walking 6.64 miles and I had to round it up. I don't have OCD, but just wanted to neaten things up.

So anyway, I was out on my walk and virtually every person or couple I passed was walking a dog. Many of them also had children - but let's take things one step at a time.

The clincher for me was a little white West Highland Terrier puppy that was sat with his owner (who stood) by the side of the walk. As I approached from a distance, this little Terrier first noticed me, then backed away as I got bigger and bigger the closer I got, before bounding forward in the way only a puppy can when I said hello. He was tiny, precocious and wonderful
- and although I know they are an 8 foot cravat (a huge tie), I still want to have one.

But, I can't - at least not this year. I've got too much else going on, and don't have the funds. I would want to get a puppy (two - for company for each other while I am at work), rather than a rescue, and that means more money. At least that is my thinking at present - that may change.

But I do know that at some point, I will have a dog or two. I even know what I will call one of them.

Friday, 6 January 2012

A Light Switch Just Out Of Reach

This is another short post, as I've left it far too late in the day to start writing.

All I want to say is that I have started 2012 with a definite sense of optimism. And the reason?

Like a light switch that is just out of reach - it is something I can't quite put my finger on.

:)

Thursday, 5 January 2012

You'll Know if I'm Getting Drunk - My Eyes Will Catch Fire

Tonight on 'Weird Things That Happen When I Drink": The Combustability of eyes when Red Wine is drunk.

I've had a bottle of Red wine tonight. I had to drink it, as I had opened it to use some of its contents in my cooking earlier, and as we all know Red wine goes off within 4 hours of being opened.

So I had three glasses of red wine tonight - but I noticed a strange side effect; my eyes got hot.

I was halfway through the bottle when I distinctly remembered feeling hot in the eye department. The heat was not coming from around the eyes, but from the eyes themselves. I was sitting there with a glass of red wine in my hand and hot eyeballs in my head.

I'm assuming this is normal? After a while the heat decreased and was replaced by an all over feeling of warm fuzziness. Coincidentally, the bottle of wine was finished around this time too.

I don't know if heated eyeballs are a common side effect of drinking Red wine, but I must admit - it wasn't a totally unpleasant experience...

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

The Tin of Temptation - It Must Be Destroyed!! (or given away)

These are testing times my friends, make no mistake. After the gluttony of the festive period, many of us have started the New Year determined to make amends. The Spirit is willing, but our bloated, flabby bodies and our appetite for sugary crap is weak. Very, very weak.

I too have started this New Year resolute and determined - and I have set the bar high. For this New Year I am going without Chocolate!!

Yes, you read right; I, Larry "I love Chocolate so much I'm thinking of changing my name to 'Kitkat Whole-Nut McWispa'" have given up Chocolate. Not one atom of Chocolate has passed these soft, yet manly and hugely kissable lips thus far in 2012, and that is how it will stay.

At least that is the plan - but the plan is under siege.

On the 2nd January I visited some friends, and they very kindly gave me some presents. One of them was a large tin of Cadbury's Heroes. Those of you reading this who just said "oh I like those" - I heard you, and you are not helping.

You see, I like them too - and having that tin sat in my kitchen is testing my resolve and willpower.
At the moment, money is a bit tight. Infact, its more than tight - it is non-existent. This is because I over spent when I went to Essex for Christmas. I have managed to get enough food in to give me meals until payday (there's a lot of tinned stuff) but I can't just eat loads when I want. I do have money at my disposal, but it is not really my money - its my overdraft. I will have to dip into it at some point, but not until I absolutely have too.
The upshot of all this is that I have my dinner, but am invariably hungry later on, and when I am hungry, that tin of chocolates calls to me.

I cannot lie and say that I have not been tempted: yes, I have opened that tin, and have bent over its contents and sniffed its sublime chocolatey aroma. And yes the smell of those chocolates coursing through my nasal passages was a delight - but I have not eaten any of them.

But my strength is failing me. Each time I pass that tin, the urge to rip off the lid and gorge myself on its contents grows stronger and stronger. It's like the hexagonal coffin of a Cocoa based vampire, and I am being drawn towards it against my will, but I am almost powerless to resist. I need to drive a vegetable stake through this vampires heart to rid myself of this evil. I would suggest a Garlic stake - but that is too obvious. How about an Asparagus spear? That works.

Metaphorically speaking, of course.

In truth I am removing temptation from my home - by taking it to my work. My boss has three kids who will easily devour the entire tin in one day, thus saving my soul (and waist line).

And so I will carry on with my abstinence of chocolate. The first few weeks are the hardest, then it gets easier.

Allegedly.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Deep Heat Profiteroles

As I write this, I am in considerable pain - although not the pain I expected to be telling you about. You see, over the course of last night while I was sleeping I managed to pull a muscle in my back. Whether I slept in a strange position, or whether that particular part of my back was exposed and got a chill, I don't know - but whatever happened I awoke this morning in pain.

This pain did not ease up all day, so after my dinner tonight I decided to have a shower to try and relax my back. I would have preferred to have had a bath, but as I only have a shower I was like a man eating in a restaurant that only served one dish: I had no choice.

The shower was nice, but my back was a bra strap or a child that wouldn't do as it was told - I was still having trouble with it. Then, suddenly, a lightbulb of inspiration illuminated above me; Deep Heat.

I have a tube of Deep Heat pain relieving cream in my bathroom, so I decided to apply some to my back. The end of the tube was a bit 'crusty' so I had to squeeze quite hard. Subsequently, more cream than I had intended came out of the tube. However, not being a wasteful chap I decided to use all at my disposal and proceeded to rub the cream into the affected part of my back.

That's the trouble with Deep Heat - because you don't use it very often, you forget how strong it is and how little you actually need to use.

The affected part of my back started to warm up nicely - and then got hotter and hotter and hotter. Soon every inch of skin that had come into contact with the cream was burning - so much so that I had to check in the mirror that I wasn't getting a rash or burns. It felt that hot.

Gradually the burning sensation died down leaving a deeper feeling of hotness in my back. I don't know if the reaction of my skin was normal or whether the cream was out of date or something. Knowing me, there is a chance that the cream was past its best. Or if it isn't that, it must have been the volume of cream used on such a small area. I'd had enough cream to fill a couple of packs of Profiteroles.

Mmm......Deep Heat Profiteroles.

I am still in pain, and my back is not feeling right. I may have to employ the services of a hot water bottle tonight to try and ease my back. I'd much rather employ the services of Cameron Diaz - hang on though; with my back? That would only be a disappointment. Mind you there has to be a first time for everything...

Recently, I have once again taken a few tentative steps into the world of the Dating Website. Before you laugh, remember that I met the love of my life through a dating website and although I messed up that relationship, I know I will never love another woman like I loved her. I'm sure I will love again, but she was something else.

Anyway, I've had a few conversations with people on this particular website I'm on - and I have had a date, although it didn't work out. But I was looking through the list of local members when I saw one who admitted to being an Agoraphobic - a person who is scared of going out. Now I'm no expert, but wouldn't being scared of going out hamper your chances of meeting someone? - even on a dating website?

Think about it: at some point, if you meet someone online, you are going to have to meet in person for a date. The general concensous is that the first meeting is in a neutral public place, but if you are Agoraphobic that's going to be a little bit difficult. And you are advised never to meet someone at their home, or invite them to yours incase they (or you) are a nutter. I suppose an Agoraphobic could invite someone to their home - but not let them in and just talk to them through the letterbox, but that's not ideal, is it?

I know I shouldn't make fun, and Agoraphobia is a horrible thing to suffer I imagine - but an Agoraphobic on a dating sight seemed odd to me. What would happen if you met a Schizophrenia sufferer? If you agreed to meet up, would it technically be a double date?

Sometimes, the world is a flat fish you don't know.

(A strange Plaice)


Monday, 2 January 2012

Thanks Christmas - We Should Do This Every Year

So its back to work for me tomorrow, and for most of us. Many of us have already gone back to work - which makes that previous sentence stupid. If many of us have already gone back to work already, how can most of us be returning to work tomorrow? You can't really use 'most' and 'many' in the same sentence successfully. You can have 'a few', or 'some' with either 'most' or 'many' - but you can't have 'many' and 'most' together, it doesn't sound right.

So, work tomorrow. I will be glad to get back into a routine, but I have enjoyed this Christmas and New Year immensely.

As for new years resolutions? I have not made any in earnest. I am starting the year by giving up chocolate (gasps of shock and a couple of faintings from my audience). I just feel at this point that it is what I want to do. Part of it is with a view to being more healthy, and I am also increasing my exercise with the same aim. My will power will be tested however, as I collected today a belated Christmas present from a friend - a tin of Chocolates. I have not succumbed to their sweet temptation, and in fact am finding having the tin around inspiration to abstain from eating them.

On that basis, I must have a woman stashed away here somewhere.....

Apart from the no chocolate rule, I have no other resolutions. I have a few goals however, some of which I have shared with folk and some that are private and for me to know only.

I should have made one a 'go to sleep early the night before returning to work' rule, as it is 11:36pm and my alarm is set for much earlier than I have been used to getting up to recently.

So on that note, goodnight and if tomorrow is your first day back, I hope it eases you back into your work routine gently :-)

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Looking Forwards

After a seriously fabulous New Years Eve with some incredible people, I now look forward to what this year will bring. I already know some of what will happen this year: I will gain my level 1 British Sign Language qualification and will start my level 2; I have a wedding to go to and subsequently have a suit to buy; There will be another trip to Scotland which means spending time with some of my most favourite people; I will be increasing my exercise in the hope of counteracting the paunch that has mysteriously developed around my middle.

The rest of the time over the coming months will be something of a mystery, but whatever this year brings, I am ready for it.

Here's to 2012!