Saturday, 12 June 2010

Football 2010?

Yay, holiday!

Friday, 11 June 2010


Now that my quip's semi full...

What shall i blunder through next?...
  • Mr dimbleby afraid of plymouth...
  • Lambeth council condones torture...
  • Oil spills...
  • The third night..
  • Hatred & bile...

Thursday, 10 June 2010

"Buses - Noise Issues with 242 Bus, from Hackney

A resident of powerscroft road asked whether the extension of the 308 bus route will effect the workings of the 242 as that bus is already causing lots of noise pollution in the area due to squealing brakes etc. The questioner also asked whether the current model of bus on the 242 route could not replaced with a single decker.

In reply steve said that tfl has taken up the brakes issue with arriva and again agreed to feedback to tfl resident’s concerns re: noise."

That was 2003/4.

Seven years later, you would have thought a capital-wide improvement would have launched, finally put this thing out of its misery. Sadly not.

But how have things improved?
  1. Increase frequency of buses utilising terminus's.
  2. Increase in driver pay.

How have things worsened for residential victims?
  1. Increasing frequency of drivers not switching off their engines whilst stationary (multiplied by many hundreds per day)
  2. Increase in frequency of drivers using their horn to say hello, say goodbye.
  3. Increase in squealing brakes.
  4. Increase in pollution due to (see 1).
  5. Increase in vibration (severe, see 1).
  6. Increase in drivers two-fingers to anything said by customer services, the bus garage, their operators, rule 124 of the highway code, their training...

... this could go on, but lunch is calling.

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Happy what?

Happy days wonderfully lasted for all of 8,100 seconds, approximately.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Oh the cupidity...

...of voltage pictures and 21st century copyright.

How many people out there in the big, bad, brooding, backwater of the interwebs watch a film they may have inadvertently downloaded, or being given a film and then gone:

  1. fantastic, will go and see it at the cinema,
  2. fantastic, will buy the optical media,
  3. will rave about it to friends, then do (1) & (2)
  4. glad didn't go to the cinema otherwise i'd be demanding my money back,
  5. glad i didn't rent it out, otherwise i'd be demanding my money back.
  6. rave about it to friends, that it's like having your eyes injected with the black-death, limbs gnawed off by rats and slowly being immersed into a weak but powerful enough alkaline solution which dissolves all your organic tissue.

If more people did (4)-(6) then maybe those companies and sharks would think twice about trying to gouge as much as they can, whilst stuffing tame lawmakers into their pockets and setting them onto their consumers.

But, think of it as buying a car for £9,000, without driving in it, nor trying it out, nor looking at it from all the angles.  You bought it basically after seeing a 30 second advert and an actor saying how wonderful it was.

Renting a car for one day can cost as little as £25 approximately - from hertz.  Buying that brand new spanking car, that you want let's say about £9,000 giving us a rent to purchase thingy, of roughly a third of one percent.

If we apply that particular percentage to the cost of buying a newly released film (dvd not bluray) at £15 - say, then in a non-gouging world the rental really cost no more than 4.1 pence (if my dodgy maths are correct). 

It might work, if the shark (sorry bank) charges issue were sorted out, it would probably cut piracy down to a pittance, without alienating the very people who may or may not wish to see the wares you have on offer; the probability exists that more people would more than likely be happy to rent even the worst created film, and probably rent films they would never ever have wasted a percentage of their hard earned money over, if it cost 4.1pence, or US$ 0.059122 as at 16:57hrs on the 8th June 2010 say, ever.

Claiming it's decimating an industry that has over the past few years produced more $200mn+ hoovers than ever before, is like a lamb looking at an approaching wolf calmly saying that it 'really is a sheep', whilst tucking into the lambs mothers ribs, it's just slaughtered.

What these companies should realise is they now have an audience really numbering in the millions (as opposed to millions of pirates), all willing but more importantly able (until everything we do is automatically vetted before uploading to the net), to wax or carp lyrical about everything and anything. 

Monday, 7 June 2010

About thyme

A friend firkled me out of my hermit-hole to brave the world outside 18 walls.

I'd forgotten what it was like, seeing how much that part of town (victoria/pimlico) had changed. Saddening to see the arrogance, the absence of empathy, to see subtle yet pervasive fear in an area that had blossomed into glittery brightness after so many years as a desolate wasteland - to become, as my friend sadly intoned, "snooty."

But what, about thyme?

The menu was modicumly expensive, after ten minutes of sitting down, half the downstairs clientèle paid and left - perhaps due to the sudden influx of raff or perhaps nothing more than a happy switch-over of customers, but any fear was dispelled as the waiters and maître d’ were fantastic, smoothly polished in their delivery, execution, and best of all non-rushy - which is always a sublime experience when everything blends without a hitch.

The rosé wine looked lost, nestled as it was forlornly at the bottom of a 330ml glass; which set thoughts scrambling as to whether i'd need to pop into a chippy on the way home or have a bar of something chocolatey to savour the feeling of fullness. Those thoughts were soon forgiven and banished upon the arrival of a shared starter, the tabla iberica comprising of: ham, chorizo, lomo & salchichon, combinations which only bettered my ageing chompers once, as each soft silkily smooth slice, happily complemented the black olive bread, with each bite gently caressing the structures of my tongue, before punting southwards. Next, i plumped for pan fried calves liver served with smoked pancetta and creamed mash, which was surprisingly even more deliciously soft, textured and meltingly tasty; indeed, each bite cried out for its own choral symphony - by far one of the best offerings i've been delighted to consume in many a year - being a hermit does have its impact. My friend inhaled the barbary duck's breast, potato rosti, braised red cabbage and red currant jus, which too rated as excellent, on the mouthwatering melt-scale.

So if you haven't yet experienced, nor worried about taking out a fifth mortgage, then about thyme should be on your visiting schedule. Strangely, well worth it.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Happy days?

It has been a while since the area experienced (relative) tranquillity. 

Over the past three days along with less squeaks from buses brakes, no all day practising from br² even the relative quietness of the night time gig allowed me to have windows open a notch, the odd boy racer (perhaps the rest have found a ditch), less bus horns, less screaming neighbours; and despite this possibly coming across as living in a hell hole, it's not, i haven't heard a police helicopter fly over for at least a day or two; but, it has been three perhaps four even (who's keeping score), gorgeous days with lovely blue skies, few circulating planes - well at least no ever-present steam-trails, which forces me to say (with hand on cold lumpen casket of lead) that living here feels, nice-ish.

This light-hearted air of tranquil-joviality has even extended to, only slightly mind, wishing for the odd bus driver who continues to keep their vehicle engines running whilst stationary at the terminus sending out wave upon wave of bone jarring low frequency vibrations, or mildly beeping his or her  (yes i know who they are) bus horn, to end up in a ditch, naturally without passengers onboard.  Unless, that is, the passengers are of the same ilk as the driver; which should be interpreted as a far happier and milder thought, than the 'string them up by the giblets until they're blackened and maggot infested', which periodically try's to prance its way across my vision. 

In the meantime, my drosera capensis is happily growing despite facing stiff competition from highly effective fly papers, chemical infused tap water, and is thriving in its north facing window, catching and partially consuming a fair portion of flies.

Hopefully, it will survive for a few more months, make it through the winter and seed one day; or be divided and strategically placed in other rooms come the spring of 2011/12 once it's matured; by which time i'd have discovered a reliable gardening establishment, so avoiding the nasty reclaimed 'multi-purpose compost' that seemed to have been scrapped from the sludge off a building site and has seemingly progressed on killing or severely crimping everything planted in it.

In the meantime, here's a picture of the carnivorous triffid, doing its best to redress the flying bug population.  Just need it a bigger bus sized...

drosera capensis, sundew, carnivorous plant

Of course it's still early, and there are many hours for things to go pear-shaped.  Which reminds, where have i left my quip carrier? ...

Friday, 4 June 2010

One day, we'll wake up

Technology (that bridling beast, laconically thrashing before breaking loose from its  maddened masters maws, and devouring everything planet-side), was supposedly enabling the groundwork for massive improvement in the lives of inhabitants within advancing 21st century nations: increased leisure times, moments for citizens to think and ponder - which it does for those clever enough, lucky enough, hard-working to be successful enough, or inherited enough; however, each year a substantive population are forced into heedless servitude, forced to work harder to produce more, forced to work longer for less: to bolster the artificial economic reality, as they work competing with those elsewhere who have to work longer, for slightly more so they can compete with... whilst those nibbling away at the edges, wonder exactly what to do with those many figure bank balance assets - whilst hundreds of millions around the world starve, or die, from preventable diseases.

Time and major catastrophe permitting, the laconically padding surly beast will cure our ills; but the current road'll ensure those who can't afford it (law of the jungle/the market - take your pick) will fall by the wayside, leaving those who can (first paragraph provisions permitting) working harder each year to pay for it, or briefly bypassing introduced regulatory hurdles stopping the manufacturing of nothing, wrapping it in nothing and promulgating it as first class investments, as another artificial construct means you take home less than you did the year before, and more of what you buy is just that little bit more expensive than the month before, (unless you live in a hyper-inflating construct, then every second's more expensive) until something's tweaked stopping people realising they're playing with loaded dice, suddenly noticing every-thing's really nought, except a pile of doings.

Until that day, happy snoozing. 

Yay,how appropriate this is the 300th iffy post of tripe, just need to flick through those brochures for something nice and new and shi- oh dear, computer says no.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Hey there mr/miss/ms royal-mail person

When did royal mail counters turn into a hybridisation cloning programme between estate agents and used car salesmen?

It has been a while, since i felt the cold dark northerly winds tousling my hair upon entering the cullis’d gates of ‘mail of royal’. Well it would have being had i popped in and had to queue; but there wasn’t a queue, however it did feel oldie-worldly having to fill in an application form and send it through the post. 

So it would have remained and i would have left with a quaint and fuzzy warmness; instead it just had to go and take a running leap over the cliff and plummet into the chasm of the disturbed hope.

Seemingly, we can do everything electronically and online (not long soon before birth and death themselves are conquered); but i remembered a time when you could pop into your post office, simply state that you required a letter recorded or delivered, paid your money and be more or less certain it would be delivered and a signature obtained.

Rose tints? Always, for the good old days.

Yesterday i popped in asked that good old question, to be greeted with a, "it's not secure you know.  If you want to make sure it reaches its destination you should send it special or registered,"


"Recorded will just get a signature at the other end, but it might not get there!"

I briefly wondered if this was an opening salvo across the bows, but took the perverse view of ‘meh’, and if it failed to reach the other end, would give me something else to quip over, as my quip carrier’s running low again.

"How much is special delivery?"  I thought it best to enquire.

"£5.50," the royal-mail person came back, quick as a flash.

"Ok. No, i'll stick with recorded," i smiled, flashing a toothy plug grin in return.

The look of disappointment on the royal-mail face was palpable.  But before the upper lip could twitch, a cog on the other side turned. "Do you have savings?"

"Pardon," i asked, wondering when i'd walked into a sales upgrade convention.

"We do safe and secure savings."

And no i didn't enquire as to what was actually meant, not so soon after serious doubt had already been placed on the likelihood of my special, but cheaply sent letter, reaching its final destination; due to potential hijacking, kidnapping or pilfering by one of the royal-mail persons mobile colleagues. 

Instead i bit my tongue, "thanks, but i already have savings. My money’s safely locked away,” – all $2.85c of it.

"Ok,” the royal-mail person disappointedly intoned, “just remember that we're always here."

That i will, and luckily so is another the branch where if you get looked at (let alone grunted to) and come out unscathed, can be viewed as damned good service, and it’s only a nice walk down... ah yes, knife pin alley!

Let’s see now; corporate drone, knife pin alley, corporate drone, knife pin al-

addendum: couple of days later… letter arrived safe and sound and unscathed.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Warmer energy times ahead

Are energy companies turning coquettishly coy and dangling tantalising cuts just around the corner - as they've done so well, and trading market's really are working?

Nothing to do then with the new government announcing a push towards better efficiencies as a way of curbing the rise of energy usage & prices, with a love for all things renewable energy bill, and raising the spectre of closer investigation into the energy co's affair...

I believe there's applause there somewhere, but the avalanching haystack appears to have covered it.

Out with bad old energy, in with good clean stuff!

Tuesday, 1 June 2010


It started saying, "left hand, right hand, watch those legs!"