Saturday, November 28, 2009

Real Mens Christmas Presents















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Extreme weather images

Some other great photos of storms on this site.

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Amazing Spaceships Concepts | Abduzeedo | Graphic Design Inspiration and Photoshop Tutorials

Posting so that I can share with my son. Carry on non Space Geeks.

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Scammers shorten their message

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Obviously the scammer template is to get any response now.

Get me a rope before Mandelson wipes us all out | Jeremy Clarkson - Times Online

I’ve given the matter a great deal of thought all week, and I’m afraid I’ve decided that it’s no good putting Peter Mandelson in a prison. I’m afraid he will have to be tied to the front of a van and driven round the country until he isn’t alive any more.

He announced last week that middle-class children will simply not be allowed into the country’s top universities even if they have 4,000 A-levels, because all the places will be taken by Albanians and guillemots and whatever other stupid bandwagon the conniving idiot has leapt onto in the meantime.

I hate Peter Mandelson. I hate his fondness for extremely pale blue jeans and I hate that preposterous moustache he used to sport in the days when he didn’t bother trying to cover up his left-wing fanaticism. I hate the way he quite literally lords it over us even though he’s resigned in disgrace twice, and now holds an important decision-making job for which he was not elected. Mostly, though, I hate him because his one-man war on the bright and the witty and the successful means that half my friends now seem to be taking leave of their senses.

There’s talk of emigration in the air. It’s everywhere I go. Parties. Work. In the supermarket. My daughter is working herself half to death to get good grades at GSCE and can’t see the point because she won’t be going to university, because she doesn’t have a beak or flippers or a qualification in washing windscreens at the lights. She wonders, often, why we don’t live in America.

Then you have the chaps and chapesses who can’t stand the constant raids on their wallets and their privacy. They can’t understand why they are taxed at 50% on their income and then taxed again for driving into the nation’s capital. They can’t understand what happened to the hunt for the weapons of mass destruction. They can’t understand anything. They see the Highway Wombles in those brand new 4x4s that they paid for, and they see the M4 bus lane and they see the speed cameras and the community support officers and they see the Albanians stealing their wheelbarrows and nothing can be done because it’s racist. And they see Alistair Darling handing over £4,350 of their money to not sort out the banking crisis that he doesn’t understand because he’s a small-town solicitor, and they see the stupid war on drugs and the war on drink and the war on smoking and the war on hunting and the war on fun and the war on scientists and the obsession with the climate and the price of train fares soaring past £1,000 and the Guardian power-brokers getting uppity about one shot baboon and not uppity at all about all the dead soldiers in Afghanistan, and how they got rid of Blair only to find the lying twerp is now going to come back even more powerful than ever, and they think, “I’ve had enough of this. I’m off.”

It’s a lovely idea, to get out of this stupid, Fairtrade, Brown-stained, Mandelson- skewed, equal-opportunities, multicultural, carbon-neutral, trendily left, regionally assembled, big-government, trilingual, mosque-drenched, all-the-pigs-are-equal, property-is-theft hellhole and set up shop somewhere else. But where?

You can’t go to France because you need to complete 17 forms in triplicate every time you want to build a greenhouse, and you can’t go to Switzerland because you will be reported to your neighbours by the police and subsequently shot in the head if you don’t sweep your lawn properly, and you can’t go to Italy because you’ll soon tire of waking up in the morning to find a horse’s head in your bed because you forgot to give a man called Don a bundle of used notes for “organising” a plumber.

You can’t go to Australia because it’s full of things that will eat you, you can’t go to New Zealand because they don’t accept anyone who is more than 40 and you can’t go to Monte Carlo because they don’t accept anyone who has less than 40 mill. And you can’t go to Spain because you’re not called Del and you weren’t involved in the Walthamstow blag. And you can’t go to Germany ... because you just can’t.

The Caribbean sounds tempting, but there is no work, which means that one day, whether you like it or not, you’ll end up like all the other expats, with a nose like a burst beetroot, wondering if it’s okay to have a small sharpener at 10 in the morning. And, as I keep explaining to my daughter, we can’t go to America because if you catch a cold over there, the health system is designed in such a way that you end up without a house. Or dead.

Canada’s full of people pretending to be French, South Africa’s too risky, Russia’s worse and everywhere else is too full of snow, too full of flies or too full of people who want to cut your head off on the internet. So you can dream all you like about upping sticks and moving to a country that doesn’t help itself to half of everything you earn and then spend the money it gets on bus lanes and advertisements about the dangers of salt. But wherever you go you’ll wind up an alcoholic or dead or bored or in a cellar, in an orange jumpsuit, gently wetting yourself on the web. All of these things are worse than being persecuted for eating a sandwich at the wheel.

I see no reason to be miserable. Yes, Britain now is worse than it’s been for decades, but the lunatics who’ve made it so ghastly are on their way out. Soon, they will be back in Hackney with their South African nuclear-free peace polenta. And instead the show will be run by a bloke whose dad has a wallpaper shop and possibly, terrifyingly, a twerp in Belgium whose fruitless game of hunt-the-WMD has netted him £15m on the lecture circuit.

So actually I do see a reason to be miserable. Which is why I think it’s a good idea to tie Peter Mandelson to a van. Such an act would be cruel and barbaric and inhuman. But it would at least cheer everyone up a bit.

This made me laugh (and a little bit queezy). Very hard to get my mind around after being out of the UK for so long. Perhaps the Brits have something to learn from these guys. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Revolution

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Why Our Great-Grandparents were Happier Than We Are

Fantastic selection of tonics. Now illegal or proscribed.

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Monday, November 23, 2009

Patient trapped in a 23-year 'coma' was conscious all along | Mail Online

A man thought by doctors to be in a vegetative state for 23 years was actually conscious the whole time, it was revealed last night.

Student Rom Houben was misdiagnosed after a car crash left him totally paralysed.

He had no way of letting experts, family or friends know he could hear every word they said.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1230092/Patient-trapped-23-year-coma-conscious-along.html#ixzz0XfGGN2Qy

Quite astonishing. Based upon my experience with mental health professionals, this does not surprise me in the slightest.

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the-sauce.org: Sun Burn

THE EVIL Sun front page showing NUM leader Arthur Scargill apparently giving a Nazi salute under the headline "Mine Fuhrer" has been revealed for the first time.

The-sauce.org has secured a world exclusive from a former mole at the News International printing plant in London's Bouverie Street.

The leak comes 25 years to the day after the hard-right tabloid first tried to tar the Marxist union leader as a Nazi.

The Sun front page never made the light of day.

Union members at the printers refused to publish the filthy slur and instead humiliated bullying editor Kelvin McKenzie.

They publicly shamed him by running across the splash: "Members of all The Sun production chapels refused to handle the Arthur Scargill picture and major headline on our lead story.

"The Sun has decided, reluctantly, to print the paper without either."

It was May 1984 and the height of the historic miners' strike.

Sun owner Rupert Murdoch wanted to thank PM Margaret Thatcher for smashing the Monopolies Commission so the foreigner could buy four British newspapers.

At the same time, the print unions were showing striking miners around the presses - and raising cash to fund the industrial action.

The printers knew if the miners lost they would be next.

Olly Duke, 57, worked at The Sun's art desk making up pages when his union "comrades" blocked the Hitler front page.

He was a member of the NUJ and the hard-left Socialist Workers' Party. He would have screaming rows with the editor.

Yesterday, from his home in the south of France, he told the-sauce.org: "The picture came through John Brown of the National Geographic Association and he refused to touch it.

"Arthur was waving to someone - there was no salute. A huge shock wave went through the offices when we stopped the page. We just wound not set that headline."Hard to imagine now, but very believable in Thatchers UK.

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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Photo Hunt Birds

Our Chickens occupy Spotty's Kennel.

Hacker and Applelby Still Popular Why Yes Minister is as true as ever - Telegraph

When Jonathan Lynn and I started writing Yes, Minister back at the end of the 1970s, we had no idea whether the television audience would find it funny. We did, however, think they might be interested in a series that took them behind the scenes of government – there had never been a TV comedy series set in Whitehall.

So from the very first episode we tried to make sure that all the details were as authentic as we could make them; obviously we included lots of things that never happened, but nothing that couldn’t happen. Our hope was that even if people didn’t laugh, they would still be interested enough to switch on again next week.

This brought an unexpected benefit. We discovered that the further you delved into the realities of government, the funnier it all became. Who could invent a plot in which a schizophrenic clambered over the walls of Buckingham Palace, climbed into the Queen’s bedroom, and cadged a cigarette off her? Impossible – until Michael Fagan did exactly that in 1982.

And even when it turned out that the British television audience got the joke, we didn’t expect it to go any further. Well, possibly to Australia, New Zealand and Canada, who had similar political systems, but that was about it.

Except that it wasn’t. In the end, 80 different countries took it, some such as Holland and India translating the scripts and producing their own versions. We even found, from Peter Ustinov, that Samizdat copies were circulating rapidly (and illegally) in Soviet Russia.

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Friday, November 20, 2009

Skywatch Friday

Morning shot from our Front Door.

More at Skywatch Friday.
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Sky TV - Scotland - Who needs HD with this lineup

Sky are rumoured to be close to launching their own dedicated Scottish Channel later this month, and have previewed what they are intending to broadcast

Here's a selection of the listed programmes: 

Sky Wan 

9am News and whair it's pishin doon

9.30am How claty is yer hoose?

This week the ladies pay a visit to a man whose wife shot the craw only three days ago to find the entire hoose under five inches of stoor and the cludgy honkin o' pish

10am The Mags Hainey Show

Early mornin chat show hosted by big Mags Hainey in which neds and Sengas settle their petty differences by screaming obscenities and attacking each other with furniture for the amusement of the viewing public. This morning's episode is entitled "Whair's ma effin hoosekeepin money disappeared tae?"

12.30pm News and whair it's pishin doon

1pm Neeburs

Soap opera set in the village of Kinghorn in Fife. This week Archie accuses Morag of being in league with Lucifer and has her burned at the stake

2pm Film

Angels wi Manky Coupons

4pm Tam the Tank Engine

Tam goes aff the rails and the Fat Controller is chuffed tae bits

4.15pm Boab the Builder

Reality show where Boab is investigated by the Inland Revenue

6pm News and whair it's pishin doon

7pm Doaktir Whae

In this week's episode the Scottish time traveller takes the TARDIS back tae 1966 and breks Geoff Hurst's legs wae a sonic Glesca screwdriver

7.30pm Torn Faced Cockney Wankers

Eastenders wi' subtitles. In tonight's episode, Pauline gets her jotters fae the steamie while the rest o' the cast stoat aboot wi' faces the length o' Leith Walk

9pm Fitba Player's Burds

Drama surrounding the players of fourth division Auchtermuchty Rovers and their off-pitch antics. This week Boaby is worried that the club is facing relegation while Moira is gettin baw deep from the Aberfeldy Academicals goalie

10pm News and whair it's pishin doon

12.30am Merrit Wi Weans

Re-make of the popular American sit-com 'Married With Children.' In this week's episode, Al sits in front o' the telly scratchin his baws while Meg is still chokin on her Nat King Cole

1.30am The Beechgrove Back-Green

The boys plans tae dae up a gairdin in Niddrie are scuppered when local neds eff off wi the wheelbarra

2.15am Close Doon


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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Face-Off With a Deadly Predator in the Antarctic

Swimming with Leopard Seals in the Antarctic. Very cool

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Global Warming Threatens Penguins - Photo Essays - TIME

I always loved Penguins during my trips to the zoo as a child. Sad to see their habitats being threatened.

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RIP Nien Cheng Author of Life and Death in Shanghai

Such grace after some of the horrors she lived through. Her book was on everybodys shelf when I lived in Singapore in the 90s.

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Women banned from wearing trousers in Paris - Telegraph

The 1800 rule stipulated than any Parisienne wishing to dress like a man "must present herself to Paris' main police station to obtain authorisation".

In 1892 it was slightly relaxed thanks to an amendment which said trousers were permitted "as long as the woman is holding the reins of a horse".

Then in 1909, the decree was further watered down when an extra clause was added to allow women in trousers on condition they were "on a bicycle or holding it by the handlebars".

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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Saint Andrew - Dinna Ast Me (Eh Dinna Ken)

Me neether

Excellent talent from Dundee of all places.

Thanks Big Rab

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Brown to apologise to all children forced to grow up in the UK

Gordon Brown is planning an apology to those children left to be raised in the UK instead of being offered the chance of living in a far nicer country, somewhere sunny.

Under the Child Migrants Programme - which ended just 40 years ago - many children were rejected and left to face a life of dreary weather, miserable citizens and truly terrible national sports teams.

59 year old Gerry Owen is one of the unfortunate children of the fifties left behind in the UK, and he told us, “I was born in 1950, and in 1959 my application to go ‘absolutely anywhere else at all’ was rejected out of hand.”

“Since then, I’ve been subjected to a miserable existence on these Isles, consisting mainly of drizzling grey monotony interspersed with abject disappointment after stunningly predictable abject disappointment.”

“It’s all the Government’s fault, and I still blame them for not sending me somewhere much, much nicer all those years ago.”

“The irony is, I’m a borderline alcoholic who genuinely loves cricket and utterly despises football, I’d have made a brilliant Australian.

The rest of Brown to apologise to all children forced to grow up in the UK

Chilling words that triggered the bloody massacre of clan MacDonald at Glencoe to go on display

I still get grief about this even now being named Campbell. I have been to Glencoe many times and it is hard to think of a starker place for such a grim event.

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Monday, November 16, 2009

Glasgow Guidedog

Download now or watch on posterous
glasgowguidedog.wmv (778 KB)

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Why was Enid Blyton so controversial? | nourishing obscurity

Head of the BBC schools department Jean Sutcliffe said in an internal memo dated 1938: “My impression of her stories is that they might do for Children’s Hour but certainly not for Schools Dept, they haven’t much literary value.

“There is rather a lot of the Pinky-winky-Doodle-doodle Dum-dumm type of name – and lots of pixies – in the original tales.” She added that they were “competently written”.

For me, I don't remember the Golliwogs very well, but the Famous Five were pretty cool.

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Sunday, November 15, 2009

With the Adelaide Christmas Pageant over time for some Christmas Lights

Ha Ha

The street over from us really get into this sort of stuff. It is still incongruous for me with hot temperatures and winter snow themes. When I lived in Singapore I always though Orchard Road looked very incongruous with their over the top decorations and 30 degrees.

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Giant iceberg spotted off Australia

The ice chunk, measuring some 2,300 feet long with an estimated depth of more than 1,000 feet, caused a stir when it was sighted by experts based on Australia's remote Macquarie Island.

Drought over as icebergs come to the rescue?

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Saturday, November 14, 2009

Photo Hunt Music

Girls Rock, originally uploaded by theclutterbells.
Rock on Hannah

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My Political Ambitions Go Nowhere

From our Scottish Correspondent, Big Rab

Bad luck on your result in the Glasgow North East by election Colin. I'm sure with a bit of effort we could have got you more than 13 votes!

Charlie Baillie - British National Party - 1,013 votes (4.92%)

William Bain - Labour - 12,231 (59.39%)

Eileen Baxendale - Liberal Democrats - 474 (2.30%)

Mev Brown - Independent - 32 (0.16%)

Colin Campbell - The Individuals Labour and Tory (Tilt) - 13 (0.06%)

Ruth Davidson - Conservatives - 1,075 (5.22%)

David Doherty - Scottish Greens - 332 (1.61%)

Mikey Hughes - Independent - 54 (0.26%)

David Kerr - SNP - 4,120 (20%)

Louise McDaid - Socialist Labour Party - 47 (0.23%)

Kevin McVey - Scottish Socialist Party - 152 (0.74%)

Tommy Sheridan - Solidarity - 794 (3.86%)

John Smeaton - Independent Backed by the Jury Team - 258 (1.25%)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Skywatch Friday

Thebarton during our heatwave this week. Temperature has been above 35 degrees all week. Three days of 39 degrees and tomorrow it hits 40 degrees. Hottest November ever.

More skies here.

Flocking Birds Gallery by Richard Barnes Photography

via Yorkshire Len

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

KP blasts the Aussies out of the Ashes 2005

I can remember watching this in the middle of the night, with England all but out of Ashes contention. I had forgotten just how many chances Australia dropped. Quite incredible counter attacking innings. It was a huge anti climax when Hayden and Langer were sent in to finish the day, with no chance to win.
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Beefy to the max - Memories of Ian Botham from the 80s

Botham's Ashes: the images and the yarns are as well-worn as the pages of a boy's first mucky book: the blind fury of those hook shots that nearly launched him off his feet, that square cut through point off Lillee, the irresistible force of his bowling action, enormously strong but still lithe. It is all as vivid as any childhood memory.

So, too, that famous picture of him in the Headingley dressing room, shirt off, the grinning man of the match raising a bottle: the king of the world. Or the more brooding shot taken the night before (145 not out overnight), about to light an atypically modest, slim cigar. He looks distant, solitary: perhaps he is reflecting on the magnitude of his achievements and what they could mean. Maybe he is just working out what his first pint will be. What a summer: 149 not out, 5 for 1, 118: the numbers need no elucidation to any cricket fan, for our memories will never fade.

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