Saturday, 31 March 2012

visiting joe in hospital (again) and the love crazed rabbit

As it was another glorious day full of the Great Lords sunshine today, l took up some stuff  for Joe, who has been admitted into James Cook hospital and had another hip replacement done, as there were complications with the first one.
I needed some fuel when l set off, but was amazed to see the queues  at the local garage. I had to wait a while to get served, and fuelled by the paranoia about strikes and shortages (see what l did there) , decided to put in extra diesel 'just in case'. Of course this also develops into a 'Catch 22' situation, and will probably cause shortages in the future, but what the fuck, l need the fuel anyway, and just got a little bit extra to save me queueing later on and make sure l can get to work (but not until next Tuesday afternoon).
Joe was his normal self (unsure if that is good or bad), in a private room, and is going to be kept in for 4 - 6 weeks.
Saw Robbo afterwards, got some wine for home, and watched some recorded stuff on the TV with the FPO (with the idiot rabbit finally crumbling and licking my nose at long last).
A loved crazed rabbit, a drunken FPO, Joe with his radio, and me on the computer. All is present and correct with the world.

toodle pip

Thursday, 29 March 2012

flying like a bird

Jarno Smeets, a mechanical engineer from Holland can fly like a bird on this contraption it has taken him eight months to build.
Everybody will want one now.

 toodle pip

outside the wine bar at work

Life can be great. As part of my work duties, l ended up sitting outside my local pub (Hunters / The Wine Bar at Catterick) on a glorious day full of bright sunshine.
Later on, after finishing work, l resumed the sitting outside and drinking duties.
Keeping it sweet.

toodle pip

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

first aid course at darlington

I had to do an update training course for First Aid at the Blackwell Grange hotel in Darlington today (on a glorious summers day), which was all well and good, but l then had to go to work afterwards and do a sleepover. Still well and good, but l had only been at work for about 2 seconds, when l managed to cut myself with a broken glass in the sink. Trust me, work's not that bad, so it wasn't intentional, no matter what it looked like.
At least l knew how to bandage / plaster myself up afterwards (through the tears).

toodle pip

the mad men girls - set me free

Mad Men: Set Me Free from popculturepirate on Vimeo.

As Mad Men is now back (hurrah!), here's a video that must have taken ages putting together, thankfully, not by me. Even in my most boring and anal moments,  l'm not that sad, although l am pleased there are others out there in internet land who are.

toodle pip

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

out and about at colburn business park

During (and fulfilling) one of my many work duties, l went to Colburn Business Park today to pick somebody up. What a waste of time the place has been (so far). I would say about half of the buildings are empty, and there is not a lot of demand for some of the unoccupied spaces. Some are already being used by charity/do gooder organisations, and this all goes hand in hand with The Colburn Lodge pub being run down, sold, then left unused (probably so it can be knocked down sometime shortly in the future).
What a sad development for the area, as The Lodge is a landmark pub, and will definitely make money once the enterprise schemes (and the planned new building of houses) takes place.
In the meantime, the area is dead, the pub is boarded up, but it's still nice to drive around on a sunny day.

toodle pip

a red army soldier - 1919

This is a Red Army soldier from 1919, and l wish all soldiers dressed like that nowadays, as that hat is kickin' and rare (as us kids like to say).
Also, I don't know what that weapon is on his left hand side, but it looks pretty large and impressive (certainly not the first time l have used that phrase).

toodle pip

russian safety posters

"Oi - stop staring at the blokes and watch your shovel you silly bitch"

Don't overload your wheelbarrow with too many wet and slippery fish while walking on a plank in a bad mood

Never try to drown out the madness of the world with two trains

Don't go chasing hammers - they're not worth it and you'll only end up getting hurt

toodle pip

Monday, 26 March 2012

shelf collapse disaster

What a disaster! The extra thick shelf in the spare room that has been up for about 70 years (at a guess), has collapsed under the weight of some of my records and books. This happened just before the Manchester United v Fulham game, so l had to run up and down the stairs to rescue records, books, DVD's and clothes from the collapsed, plaster covered debris. This was just before the kick off, at half time, and just after the game. I have never felt so knackered in all of my life, running up and down the stairs, clearing some of the mess up, taking some of the records downstairs, and trying to fight off an asthma attack with all of the dust flying about (while also celebrating yet another (less than glorious) Manchester United win).
Of course the FPO ignored it all, persevering with her Second Life (the one that's better than her own). At least she informed me that it had happened, so there has been some progress in her development and progress from her addiction to it.
More work to do at the weekend fixing the calamity, but at least l found the LP (Queen live at the BBC bootleg) l had promised to give to Ken Moore  once l remembered where it was. I am way too nice (or stupid) for my own good (but also, still knackered with all the dust flying about).
I blame God (again).

toodle pip

2001 : a space odyssey film poster

2001 : a space odyssey is one of my favourite films, and this poster for it is one of my favourites as well.
I've never watched the film on drugs (because l can't imagine such a thing), but it must have been pretty 'far out' for all the 'heads' and 'freaks' experiencing it  (and their drugs) at the cinema back in the day.
Lucky gits.

toodle pip

how l used to be a rock god like in led zeppelin

It's pretty hard to believe now, but back in the day, this used to be me. A rip-roaring, rodgering, raconteuring, rakish rapscallion of a rogue (but without shagging under age girls).
The evidence is strong.
I have impartial printed evidence that l used to look like Robert Plant (when he was still good looking).
l always had a beautiful lady by my side, and l have hung about (albeit for a short time) with the great and good person that is B.P Fallon, the man with his eyes closed who Plant has his arm around.
I have also handled snakes (of the reptilian kind), and if this photograph was taken in the States, which l suspect it was, l have also been there and had many a rock and roll time in and around it's many hostelries.
Sadly, with my dodgy heart, back, knees, asthma, old age and egg shell head, those days are but a distant memory.
Of course, l blame God (and the FPO for wearing me down and constantly feeding me)
Time to get back to my crunches before her evil plan works and it is to late for me to reclaim my crown.

toodle pip

Sunday, 25 March 2012

drive (2011) - nicholas windring refn

I had a lot of hope for this film, as l foolishly listened to advice from co-workers and internet message boards, which both told me that Drive was well worth watching. That probably shows me up as the fool that l am, and l shall never trust anybody else's opinion again, as it was pretty a mediocre film, at least to my tired old eyes. I would have liked it a lot more if somebody else had been playing the (unnamed) central character rather than Ryan Gosling, who's (supposedly) quiet, enigmatic, tough (and yet with a caring heart of gold) driver of the film, just left me feeling bored and annoyed (so no change there). I felt like taking his toothpick off him and ramming it repeatedly into his eye, just to get some sort of naked emotion from him, but l'm afraid the glass TV screen (plus a few court orders) prevented me doing so. The supporting actors were fine, and maybe Gosling just played the role as instructed, but l still hated his wooden performance.
Anyway, to skip through it, Gosling is a (very quiet) driver of getaway cars who falls for a woman and child (not in that way!) who live in his block. He then gets involved with some dodgy people, and helps out the (just released from prison) husband of the woman in a hold-up, which goes wrong. The husband is killed, and the driver tries to reap revenge on the baddies.
The violence is pretty graphic (no problem there) and Joan from 'Mad Men' is in it (always a good thing). The soundtrack (by Cliff Martinez - formally drummer with The Red Hot Chili Peppers) is excellent, and l realise the critical response to the film has been really good, but what the hell do other people know, it's a load of over-rated tosh and tripe, and they are all wrong.

toodle pip 

Saturday, 24 March 2012

the banking crisis explained

They should have more people like this Irish chappie on the normal news channels.
From now on, all the bankers are 'fuckshites' in my eyes.

 toodle pip

Friday, 23 March 2012

team great britain's new kit

What a load of old tosh this new Olympic Games kit is (by Stella McCartney and Adidas), although l want one of whatever the guy on the left has stuffed down his trousers.

toodle pip

golly football team from the valiant

While l was scanning some of my old Valiant comics, l saw this advert for a Golly football team, from when they used to be on the front of marmalade jars.
How times have changed, the advert would never be allowed today. This one is from August 1968.

toodle pip

Thursday, 22 March 2012

james cook heart tests

Out and about this afternoon at the James Cook hospital in Middlesbrough (again) for my heart loop recorder battery to be checked. Pretty routine stuff, but the person doing the testing seemed to be a bit concerned, and has said l need to see my consultant at Northallerton about the results. I sneaked a look at my notes while she was out of the room and it shows l had 58 episodes of Asystole during the last year (when my heart stopped). This did not cause me any discomfort, and l haven't fainted or anything, but l guess they might want to try me on some drugs (hurrah!!) or check me out again. Looking at the recent dates, l was in London for the Todd Snider gig (slightly tipsy), out and about on New Years Eve and Day (had the odd ale), and celebrating Manchester United beating Arsenal 8-2 in Portugal (pretty damn merry). I think l can detect a pattern already. Still, if that is the sort of lifestyle that is going to see me off, bring it on!
Obviously l'm indestructible, but this sort of thing would have seen off many a lesser man.

toodle pip

guinness is good for you

No mention on the Guinness poster that it turns your poo black.

toodle pip

clockwork orange imagry

Re-watching 'A Clockwork Orange' again the other night (one of my favourite films), l was reminded (as if l needed to be) how great, influential and iconic it was (and still is).
I saw it while still at school when there was a big fuss about the sex and violence in it, and how it was supposedly leading to copycat incidences.
All l can say is, it never did me no harm, and l have watched it many times over the years, at the movies, on dodgy videos and DVD's, and eventually on my own (and much treasured) legal DVD.
On the other hand, l'm sure the FPO will disagree.
The film was also withdrawn for many years, but the book is more violent. Maybe it was thought that intelligent people read, so would not perpetrate violence after reading the book, whereas the uneducated plebs who watch the film might.
It's also a good job l don't have kids, as the child in the last photo would be the way l would force my offspring to dress, male or female.
Viddy well my brothers, time for a moloko.

toodle pip

killer vegetables

I've always said vegetables (and salad) are bad for you.

toodle pip

the nest for the garden

This is the sort of thing l should have in the garden for the summertime. As long as the spiders stayed out of it, l would never come indoors again.
More info here.

toodle pip

beavis and butt-head come alive

Ever wondered how Beavis and Butt-head might look if they were real?
Wonder no more, as here is a sculpture of them by  Kevin Kirkpatrick.
I'm also looking forward to the new series, as l used to love them years ago, and some of the new acts nowadays could do with being savaged by them.
I just hope they don't let me down, as these things are sometimes better when they are left in the past..

toodle pip

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

goya's ghosts (2006) - milos forman

I was actually enjoying Goya's Ghosts right up to the point where they released Ines (Natalie Portman) from prison. Then it just seemed like a farce, with her gurning her way through the rest of the film in a less than convincing way (to say the least). 
She had been Goyas's model, until she was imprisoned by the Spanish Inquisition (who nobody expected) and tortured for following Jewish rituals (not eating pork).
Brother Lorenzo (an excellent, thoughtful, and brooding Javier Bardem) agrees to assist Goya (and Ines's family), to try and get her released, but succumbs to his desires when praying with her (she is, after all, naked).
Lorenzo defends the Inquisition and 'The Question', until he is put to 'The Strappado' himself, after which he confesses to being a monkey, and then disappears, only to return later with the all conquering French army (and a smug grin on his face, seeking revenge).
Ines (and the other prisoners), is released and searches, (with the help of Goya) for the child she said she had in prison (Lorenzo's). 
There is a lot of turmoil around the Peninsular War, but the only thing in the film worse than the gurning and shuffling,  is Alicia, the unbelievably toothy child of Ines (also played by Portman), when she is eventually found.
She came across like a bad Spitting Image caricature of Janet Street Porter back in the midsts of time.
If l had stopped watching the film after an hour, l would have recommended it, but it just gets sillier and sillier as it goes along. 
 It all ends badly, as Ines is pretty insane, Goya goes death, and Lorenzo is garrotted
Bardem was great all the way through, but that was it, as l could take or leave the portrayal of Goya.
Interesting at first (albeit mostly fiction), then crap (but with a funky hat).

As a footnote, rather sadly, 'The Strappado' is still used as a torture device today (including by the USA).

toodle pip