Thursday, March 29, 2007

Tinpot Or Tosspot

Iran has 'detained' 15 British sailors whom they claim were found inside Iranian territorial water. The British Navy say that their GPS equipment proves that they were 1 mile inside Iraqi waters. The Iranians have said that this whole affair can be ended if the British admit to being in the wrong.

Zimbabwe's pensioner frontman, Robert Mugabe, still treats his political adversaries like terrorists. Morgan Tsvangirai has been beaten from pillar to post just because he believes it's time for change and that he doesn't agree with Mugabe's policies.

Swiss spray-painter, Oliver Jufer, has been jailed for 10 years following a drunken spree when he defaced portraits of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Jufer, who has lived in Thailand for a decade, knew what he risked and even His Holiness has questioned the laws that protect him.

What a strange place we live in ...


Friday, March 23, 2007

Emergency Aid ...

This 'ere blog started in October 2005 and in that time I have introduced you to a multitude of daft stories, idiotic political decisions and my own personal views on a wide variety of subjects. In their brief history, these daily postings had yet to reach the dizzy heights of more than one comment or an unsolicited suggestion ... until yesterday.

The great loss of life attributed to natural disasters, the rich and famous being treated like deities, certain far away secular religious groups acting like children, the general public being held to ransom by an all-powerful local government, even the ridiculous and senseless detention of yours truly in 'Hotel Commissariat' last year - all have been covered here in great detail.

... but nothing can compare to an Englishman who's run out of tea bags - just watch the help pour in.

Just about says it all really ...


(Thank you to PE who's mid-Atlantic about now and my old flying mucker, LJ in NI.)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Save The Last Dunk For Me ...

Today marks a very sad occasion, the very last of my PGTips teabags had been brewed and drunk. Lovely.

This bloody country insists on filling its supermarket shelves with Twinings tea (over here pronounced: Twinn-ings), they think that this second-rate copy is IT amongst teas - the tea to end all teas. Sadly, it tastes as though someone crapped in the packet before sealing and shipping ...

Oh, tell me where I can get some PGTips please ... but I'm not going to pay a fortune for some dodgy Chinese import.


Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Gee Whizz ...

Hot off the wires for you this morning ... a genetically-modified (GM) strain of malaria-resistant mosquito has been created that is better able to survive than disease-carrying insects. Gosh.

It gives new impetus to one strategy for controlling the disease: introduce the GM insects into wild populations in the hope that they will take over and destroy the disease-ridden lower classes. These new lab-insects carry a gene that prevents infection by the malaria parasite. In the lab, equal numbers of genetically modified and ordinary "wild-type" mosquitoes were allowed to feed on malaria-infected mice. As they reproduced, more of the GM mosquitoes survived. After nine generations, 70% of the insects belonged to the malaria-resistant strain.

If all goes well with testing, they will soon find their way into the great outdoors.

The only slight hiccup being it that they're 7 foot long and fly at the the speed of an F-16.


Friday, March 16, 2007

Bac-on Track ...

Yes, yes, yes ... I know. I've written about daft stories before and this one is no different from the rest.

Honley Junior School in West Yorkshire was getting ready to perform a version of Little Red Riding Hood And The Three Little Pigs but was told to substitute the piggies for puppies by some meddling do-gooder.

The fears being that the pigs might upset the Muslim children in the chorus so the order went out to ban the piggie lyrics from the performance.

Little Red Riding Hood And The ... Puppies? What the heck is going on? Were the school teachers asking the little Muslims to eat pig meat? No, just to sing about them in the Kirklees Primary Music Festival. Council education spokesman Jim Dodds said that "something barmy is going on here and it has happened on my watch. I can tell you now that the three little pigs will be back into the school musical festival." He added that "the decision to ban the pigs was made by well-meaning people - it was the wrong decision, so let's stick with tradition"

Well said Jim.

Surely, with non-Christian kids living in a Christian-based country, now is the ideal time to learn about other cultures. It proves that integration and inter-culture tolerance starts at nursery school ...

Tell me, 2007 is the Chinese year of the Pig. In China, 2.4% of the populous is Muslim. Are they offended?

Err, nope ...


Monday, March 12, 2007

I Feel Like A Piece Of Ass ...

This is too good to re-write, so here it is as it appeared as published:

A man who was found dressed in latex and handcuffs brought a donkey to his room in a Galway city centre hotel, because he was advised “to get out and meet people,” the local court heard last week.

Thomas Aloysius McCarney with an address in south Galway was charged with cruelty to animals, lewd and obscene behaviour, and with being a danger to himself when he appeared before the court on Friday. He was also charged with damage to a mini-bar in the room, but this charge was later dropped when the defendant said that it was the donkey who caused that damage.

Solicitor for the accused Ms Sharon Fitzhenry said that her client had been through a difficult time lately and that his wife had left him and that his life had become increasingly lonely.

“Mr McCarney has been attending counselling at which he was told that he would be advised to get out and meet people and do interesting things. It was this advice that saw him book into the city centre hotel with a donkey,” she said. She added that Mr McCarney also suffered from a fixation with the Shrek movies and could constantly be heard at work talking to himself saying things like “Isn’t that right, Donkey?”

Supt John McBrearty told the court that Mr McCarney who had signed in as “ Mr Shrek” had told hotel staff that the donkey was a family pet and that this was believed by the hotel receptionist who the supt said was “young and hadn’t great English.”
Receptionist Irina Legova said that Mr McCarney had told her that the donkey was a breed of “super rabbit” which he was bringing to a pet fair in the city. The court was told that the donkey went berserk in the middle of the night and ran amok in the hotel corridor, forcing hotel staff to call the gardai.

McCarney was found in the room wearing a latex suit and handcuffs, the key to which the donkey is believed to have swallowed. He was removed to Mill St station after which it is said he was the subject of much mirth among the lads next door in The Galway Arms.

He was fined €2,000 for bringing the donkey to the room under the Unlawful Accommodation of Donkeys Act 1837. Other charges were dropped due to lack of evidence.

Good, or what?

Thank you PE for bring this to our attention.


Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Americans are not stupid. Official.

Yeah, right ...

And this is the modern day Superpower? We're well and truly f**ked ...!


Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Modern-Day Hit Squad

It is a well-known fact that Paris is full of scooters and motorbikes. With the amount of cars and vans blocking up the city roads, it's seem the most efficient and cheap way of negotiating the busy boulevards and avenues.

An example: you will need to pull €8 out of your pocket to fill the tank of a 125cc scooter, which should buzz you around town for at least a week. If you have a 4x4 or a 4-door saloon, it'll be closer to €80.

There used to be a rule that said that 'you can park your bike wherever you want, so long as there's a 2 meter gap top allow pedestrians to pass'. No more, it would appear. The use of scooters and motorbikes is growing at an alarming rate to combat the ever increasing blockages around the city. The Mayor has built '2 Roues' ('2 Wheel') parking spots around town but they are too few and often filled with abandoned bicycles and scooters.

So, on a wide pavement with 2 meters to spare, there's a line of bikes, neatly parked and not scattered about the place. The Hit Squad make their move. Once there are a sufficient number bikes on the horizon, they telephone the removal men and start issuing parking tickets. Three trucks turn up and each take away two bikes. A race bettween ticketing and removal. It seems that if you have you bike attached to a post, or something solid, there is no way they can take it away as they now have sets of 'little wheels' for moving anything that isn't tied down. The bastards.

I know of a bike that sits all day almost in the middle of a pavement in the 8th Arrondissement, a space wide enough for 2 people to walk, yet it receives no interest from the Hit Squad. On a wide and less-busy pavement, you're screwed.

Take a look at the above photograph - even the passers-by can't believe how petty the authorities have become. However, It tells us one thing - a left-over from August 1944: the Nazis never really left.


* Update *

24 hours later ...

You lucky, lucky bastard ...

Friday, March 02, 2007

And There's More ...


This epic continues to roll outlike a never-ending Ben Hur.

Now that I have decided not to invest in any more hardware (what I've already got seems to do the trick), another helpful soul piped up with "Get yourself the new Tokina 10mm lens. However, the sunshield is made of metal therefore harder to saw off. I'm sure the shop would happily slice it off for you".

Tell me, when was the last time you walked into a car showroom and ordered a brand new vehicle but then asked the dealer to vandalise the thing? If he made a mistake, the guarantee would be go up the pictures and he's not going to be overly-willing to put it right at his own expense, now is he?

Silly people.


Thursday, March 01, 2007

Ready To Breathe Again ...

Following my last entry and buying a Nikkor lens, finding a hacksaw and a 5mm spark plug gauge, then slicing the sunshield off, my Irish Godfather tells me not to bother.

So, I won't.