Saturday, December 31, 2005
Happy New Year to all my Blogging amigo's, friends and family and of course the fans and avid readers of this blog (the millions of you) world wide! I'm sure 2006 will be a good one!
Thanks for all the comments, ones of encouragement, satire and sarcasm - keep them coming.
And thanks for all the wonderful blogs out there, letting me share a small slice of your lives.
Have a good one, stay safe - and keep on the pavement (sidewalk if you're American!)
Right I'm off out for a bullet proof piss up !!! (hangover ahoy!)
Thursday, December 29, 2005
The programme had appearances from Ingrid Pitt, Honor Blackman, Diana Dors, Barbara Windsor, Madeline Smith and one of my personal favourites Valerie Leon. Not only were camp style films represented there were also pieces on Pans People, Hammer horror, Confessions films and popular sitcoms of the time, right up until the days of Benny Hill.
Tony Livesey covered it really well in a frank and often personally indulgent documentary style fashion, never dwelling on a subject for too long to retain the viewer’s interest; it was a magical slice of retro nostalgia induced history. A look back into the days of Sid James infectious dirty laugh, the good old days of slap and tickle He presented it in such a compelling matter of fact way and icons of the era made contributions also, any chance of seeing Lesley Phillips say ‘Ding Dong’ has to be taken! There were also social comments from Germaine Greer who didn’t really verbally assault the era as much as I expected, I think even she saw it as harmless fun far removed from the often exploitive society of today.
Sadly these days we have the likes of surgically enhanced Jordon and the very unremarkable Abi Titmuss adorning the covers of magazines – gone are the days of voluptuous 70’s beauties with natural cleavage and untamed hair
Out has gone the word ‘Crumpet’ and in its place we have words like ‘Totty’ et al.
I think I’m going to make a concerted effort to remain old fashioned and use the word Crumpet whenever possible. OOOhhh Matron !
Below is a a couple of photo's of the very gorgeous Valerie Leon, star of many a 70’s film. Phwwooaarrr !
Monday, December 26, 2005
Above is the 'Castle Barge' pub which is just to the left of the bridge when entering Newark, it gets very busy in summer and attracts mainly a young crowd at weekends. I like it because now and again they'll play some alternative stuff. It is bigger inside than you think, comprising of two decks, originally it was a grain barge built in 1923.
Next up is Newark castle that sits neatly beside the Trent. The castle was built between 1125-35, it was founded by the bishop of Lincoln known as Alexander the magnificent. excavation work found bones that were dated back to the Saxon times and it's thought that a Saxon manor was also built on the site. King John died in Newark castle 1216 from excessive eating and drinking. The castle was a royalist stronghold in the civil war and withstood 3 long sieges, when in 1646 King Charles was captured at nearby Southwell the parliamentarians ordered the townsfolk to pull the castle down, as you can see they didn't really do a good job!
This is a view of the rear of the castle, part of the gate house that still stands.
Friday, December 23, 2005
Christmas is coming and Pat is getting fatter
Every blogger knows he’s as mad as a hatter
Em’s has a Christmas tree in the house
But will it be a home to a pesky mouse?
Shep is having pain and grief
Apparently it’s with his teeth
And Jay is certainly committing a crime
With this dreadful rhyme (sorry folks!)
Merry Christmas !!!
Thursday, December 22, 2005
I enjoy going out for meals but I’m not someone that has meals out on a regular basis, I’ve also has several meal disasters in the past with ex’s, booking tables and then when I’ve got there my name has mysteriously disappeared from the guest list, among other stories.
Tuesday I went out on a date, it was supposed to be a date at the cinema but there was some indecision over the choice of movie so I suggested a meal, then immediately winced when I thought of past disasters. Come Tuesday I’d got nothing booked (shame on me) and when my date arrived to pick me up I shrugged and said don’t worry about it.
Salvation and inspiration came to me from an unlikely source, my mobile rang and it was my friend Gary who’d just returned back from Hong Kong to see his family for Christmas. In conversation he told me a new ‘Frankie & Benny’s’ had recently opened near him. Seizing on his suggestion I told my date to head in that direction and breathed a sigh of relief.
I was a little concerned as my date is in the running to be a prospective conservative candidate and classy with it (I'm not a Tory!), basically I’d not been in a Frankie & Benny’s before so didn’t really know what to expect. On arriving it looked busy ‘will we get seats?’ I mused – Luckily we did, phew.
Sinatra's hypnotic tones schmoozed and crooned in the background, the menu had a lot to offer and the whole place made me feel like I was sat in a scene of Pulp fiction, we were even sat at the ‘Joe DiMaggio’ table (Mr Tarantino is a film god). I began to relax and so did my date Miss Tory (sounds like Mystery!). The food was excellent, the atmosphere was lively and the service was really good.
Needless to say it was a lovely evening…….. almost.
On paying with my debit card the portable machine that the waitress used for payment twice rejected my card – shock/horror and embarresment.
I know my blogging amigo Pat uses the excuses of ‘I’ve lost my bank card or ‘It doesn’t work’ and now this was happening to me, for real.
I removed the card from the machine and noticed a rough bit plastic near the front of the card that’s inserted first, smoothing it with my finger nail I inserted it back in and to my utter relief it worked.
I tipped the waitress (I said try the Lucky Hobbit in 2:10pm at Ascot) and then I signed some autograph’s for the fans outside. Top evening.
Frankie and Benny – you have a new fan!
Sunday, December 18, 2005
I took this photo this morning on my way back from Newark and a night out, had to get my mate to stop the car so I could take in some fresh air (and clear me head). This lovely piece of Nottinghamshire countryside is located between the villages of Caunton and Kneesal.
Thursday, December 15, 2005
I’m a big supporter of the national health and proud of what it offers the nation but just lately my confidence in it has been severely dented.
Firstly when my mum passed away back in September certain things left a bad taste in my mouth regarding how things were handled. It’s fair to say on her death bed mum didn’t look very nice, a bloated face, blood streaming from her mouth, she was on a ventilator machine and her hair looked very unkempt. I know the nurses did all they could for her but as I left a nurse assured me she’d ‘tidy her up a bit - make her presentable’. A couple of days later I took my Granny (my mums Mum) to the hospital mortuary / chapel of rest, it was heartbreaking enough for her seeing her daughter dead but when we entered the room where mum lay it was evident that mum hadn’t really been ‘tidied up at all’. I wasn’t expecting garlands of flowers and unicorns in attendance, just for her to look presentable and respectable. When Granny left the room she looked ashen faced and shaken, I Just felt bitter, which soon turned to anger as the attendant in the mortuary tried to rush us as he had ‘another appointment’. Sorry if I come across as a tad graphic but its only now I feel able to talk about it easier.
My next gripe is about my recent appointment at the same hospital when I went to see about my eye. Firstly a bit of back story, I damaged my eye playing football years ago aged 13, thus ended any football aspirations. My eye ended up having a detached retina which I believe boxers get quite a bit from heavy blows to the head. Anyway, the years passed and so did the operations but my eye never really recovered and instead deteriorated. My recent appointment was basically to see about tidying up the way my eye looked. I was told that because my eye is effectively of no real use why should they bother operating? I stated that a lot of people have cosmetic surgery these days for very minor things, they just plead depression or anxiety, here was I stating a very genuine and honest case. The female doctor added she could speak to a colleague at Queens Medical in Nottingham that deals specifically with the cornea part of the eye and if I’d not heard anything by February to get in touch. I left hospital quietly fuming. (I will pursue this though)
My last moan is about my local doctor’s surgery. Usually when you ring to make an appointment you have to wait ages, and then if it ain’t serious they say its best to pop in and make an appointment in person. So last Friday I did exactly that, popped in and stood at the reception desk requesting a non urgent appointment, I was then told its better to phone to make one !!!
I followed that by making an enquiry for a flu jab which resulted in the receptionist asking me if I’d had a ‘letter’. I retorted I didn’t but with my eye condition the hospital had recommended a flu jab. The receptionist huffed, puffed and moaned until I interjected and said leave it and I’ll discuss it with the doctor.
What a palava it is just to get things done, I pay for prescriptions and I’m not a typical hypochondriac yet it just seems so much hard work to get anything sorted.
Now just to show I’m not a miserable bastard and that I’m sure the NHS does work for millions out there here’s a photo of my kinda nurse.
Monday, December 12, 2005
The main thing is without waffling on is that I get made redundant on January 6th 2006 but wait - I don’t want sympathy because it’s come as a relief if I’m being honest. The office where I work is re-locating to Leeds because the business we are in is basically in decline. They could have closed our Leeds office and moved things here but we got the short straw, odd as they get paid more in our Leeds office so they would have saved money. It’s fair to say there may have been movement in the shadows that nobody knows about, some aspects of the whole thing smack of the underhanded, that’s business – often unfair, nothing as they say lasts forever. It came as a shock a while back when it was announced and there are some good people here but I’m sure we’ll all move on and prosper. The only tinge of irony for me is that it caps off what has been a shitty year but then again I was beginning to tire of working in a perpetual night time world and sleeping during the day. The job has basically made me unfit, often unsociable and was slowly starting to rot my brain with the repetition of it all and of course dealing with numpty clients on a daily basis. Reflecting back, the job hasn’t been bad, it’s financed a lot of things for me, several holidays to China and Thailand, video games, beer and also left me with a few quid in the bank. I’ll miss working with the guys I’ve worked with, they been top blokes and in truth they are what I will miss most.
The thing is, I’m not down about it, sure I will be out of a job in the New Year but they are giving me a decent redundancy and bonus for staying with the company until the end, plus I have my savings.
So what lies ahead is a bit of an adventure really, having some money in the back pocket and free time will enable me to have a holiday in the Far East again, catch up with some friends around the country and hopefully move over to Newark where my dad lives and where I also want to live. The plan is to put a bond down on a place and pay some rent in advance and then get a job, though I am applying for jobs over that way now. Of course I can’t guarantee any of this will happen but if I sit on my arse and do nothing then it won’t. My thoughts are I’d go anywhere right now, I feel ready for some life changing events, if I had a chance to work in London, I’d go but for now I have my sights on Newark.
So I guess to finish up with all I can say is I’ll be glad to see the back of this year and I look forward to 2006 and the new adventures that await this hobbit !
By the time you’ve recovered from the shock they will have sprinted away, if you do manage to grab one then you’ll probably get jumped on and beaten by the rest of them or the police will show up and arrest you for assaulting them! It just strikes me that justice seems to be on the decline these days; decent people try to do decent things only for the tables to be turned. Police get the wrong end of the stick or get annoyed because you interrupted their tea break at McDonalds and if it does go to court the judge goes all soft when he hears the sob story from the yobs solicitor.
We can all say what we’d do if it happened to us, say how we’d break their arms etc but in all honesty we don’t know how we’d react until it happened.
The law needs to get tough on this type of thing – and quickly.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
I guess the obvious argument is that London is the largest city and is home to the most people so there’d be more chance of incidents. The thing is I always thought London had a more laid back attitude and cosmopolitan atmosphere compared to other cities so the recent changes would not seem like a big deal. I’m sure a lot of places in London had more liberal drinking licences before anyway, especially the big clubs in and around central London.
Surprisingly the hot spot cities that were expected to be hit the worst were instead very quiet and the new changes passed without much event.
My blogging buddy Em’s did comment about Nottingham being a hot spot, sorry Em’s but the facts are above, in concluding all I can say is Londoners cannot handle the booze as well as us northerners but then again that always was a well known fact, they should stick to jellied eels and pearly suits !!!
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
Thursday, December 01, 2005
This is of course incorrect and caught the attention of Serendipity who was not best pleased. To appease her I sent a text to explain that the use of ‘grim’ only pertained to recent girls I dated. Shortly after I received a phone call from Serendipity who expressed her displeasure and also added she is 5’9 tall (intimidation for sure). Then followed a rather light-hearted chat to my relief….. and concerns for my health.
So to put the record straight, and before I incur the wrath of anymore Amazon’s from my home town – Girls from where I live are lovely, articulate and intelligent.