Archive for March, 2004

Now you think pockets are useful but they’re bloody not. Especially coat pockets, they’re just a haven for all the shite you haven’t thrown out yet, receipts, bus tickets from 1986, slightly soiled tissues that still have a single virgin corner, keys that you’ve forgotten which lock they’re for, that leaflet that some geezer gave you in the street that you decided not to dent his self-confidence by dropping on the pavement etc. etc.! They weigh you down so much as to give you that Isosceles triangle look when you walk. And then women use them as a handbag annexe so you end up with 2 phones and two wallets and 2 packets of fags (but only ever one lighter which is yours because “I don’t need a lighter because you light my fire darling” ho bloody ho!) And she’ll only buy Marlboro Lights when she knows you hate them and then spread them liberally around her mates who “don’t smoke really” and finish off the evening smoking all your Camel. The only alternative is to stuff half of your paperwork into your wallet which makes you look like you’re tooled up if you put it in the breast pocket of your coat, or look like you have a hernia if you put it in your jeans -of course if it’s heavy enough with all the small change from the “Sorry, love haven’t got any fivers” lady who evidently hasn’t heard of the £2 coin either then if you don’t have a hernia you’ll soon get one. The other alternative is a Manbag… and let’s be serious, no, not unless you can mince like a good’un. And I’m not being homophobic here, there are gay men who cannot get away with a Manbag just as there are camp straight men that can. But you do have to wear garish clothes be able to camp it up at a moments notice and be able to hold discourse on why you went for the Prada one rather than the equally pricey Lacroix.

Original Comments:

OK now I hate moving house, I mean really detest it, most people do but I have a special reserve of vitriol which only comes out when I’m moving. You see I’m a strange untidy sort of person, I have stuff all over the place but when it comes to clearing up, and when you’re moving there’s just a never ending amount of clearing up, I don’t like to shove it all in bags to get it out. It offends me because then I don’t know where anything is and I spend the next 6 months trying to bloody find stuff again things like paperwork that I needed 4 months before etc. etc. So I’m currently in the grips of moving so it’s work during the day then come home and try to move in the evening, I have been up until 2am the last 4 nights trying desperately to get it all done. Tonight is last chance and I’m absolutely knackered I’ve still got to clear the myriad assortment of shite from the floor in the living room and the kitchen, the loft is done, the bathroom just needs a bit of a clean.

I forgot that when you move into a new place there are all the strange sounds that you’re not used to, the gas boiler keeps making noises, my flatmate going for a piss and farting whilst he’s in the bog, all these charming little nuances that you miss when living alone! My flatmate is now convinced that my last place was The Tardis due to the continuing stream of stuff that keeps coming out, and yet the place still looks as untidy within as it did when I was living there! I even got a mate to help me lug stuff yesterday, and if he hadn’t I’d have really been screwed no doubt about it, I could possibly have coped with the amount but the sheer weight of some things would have completely worn me out. As it is I went to bed with that throbbing feet feeling and back spasms, today I just feel like lead. The only consolation is that I shouldn’t have to lift anything heavy tonight all that stuff is out. I wish I had a delicate broom, something that I could use to sweep everything on the floor into a bag without the fear that I’m bound to break the only item of importance that might be left.

I’m a horder, I admit it, it appears to be something I have a definitive aptitude for sadly when coupled with an equally strong talent for lethargy it means I am likely to be on the next series of BBCs ‘A Life of Grime’, I see it as no coincidence that on that program after they removed the elderly Mr Trebus from his “squalid” house which they had been declaring unfit for habitation due to all the stuff, he was moved into a home and they tidied him and his clothes up he died shortly afterwards. You see it’s organisational facism, tidy people think that messy people are just tidy people who are too lazy to tidy up. Whereas in fact tidy people are just messy people who are just too anal to let things lie once in a while. I genuinely do not like tidyness for tidyness sake, the idea of moving all your shit out of the way because people are coming over…bollocks to that if I’m going over to them I expect to abide by their house rules and if that means taking shoes off and being very tidy that’s fine it’s their house. If they come to me they can relax because I don’t give a monkeys whether they lounge around and be all messy, as long as they don’t piss on the floor of the bog or move my records around I’m happy, Yes, I am a little strange when it comes to books, records, DVDs etc. I like them sorted a la Rob in High Fidelity. It has to be precise and they have to be all pushed in to the smae extent, any height discrepancies in the books must be accounted for by placing taller on the sides and gradually tapering in, books must be sorted by category, records by artist, DVDs by genre (except the Michael Caine stuff which must be chronological)! I apologise, I’m a freak and obviously I am a tidy person just too lazy to tidy up. The worst thing is that if I’m at someone else’s house I feel the need to organise their films and music as well and ensure that the spacial side of things is symetrical, I can’t stand things hanging slightly over the edge of a shelf!

So you see there again I am obviously going to have real trouble moving because the things I like organised descend into chaos and the things I am quite happy to have disorganised get mixed up with stuff that shouldn’t be there. Consequently I am booking a minor nervous breakdown for very shortly.

Original Comments:

Katie made this comment,
I thought that I was the only one! I am pathalogically messy and allow my clothes to live in piles on the floor etc but when it comes to CDs, vinyl,books and DVDs I am incredibly anal. Cds must be separated into albums (which are the organised alphabetically by artist and within artist chronological order, however soundtracks etc must be kept separtely in alphabetical order), singles and ‘other’ ie freebies etc. Vinyl singles and alblums must also be keep separately and in size order &” together, 12″ together all in alphabetical order. Books must be as per a library, fiction organised alphabetically and non-fiction by catergory and DVDs must be separated into the films, tv shows and other before being arranged in alphabetical order. However, I will often keep one of a pair of shoes in the hall and another in the living room. Also rather than having the urge rearrange other peoples things I have actually done it to some of m close friends in the past. Anyway in summary you are not a freak, no.
Visit me @

comment added :: {ts ‘2004-05-15 22:51:09’} GMT+01

OK I stole the title but plaguarism is a sincere form of flattery. I have kept writing even tho’ my network connection has been down for days, so I thought I’d just upload all in one go rather than be lazy and not get anything done.

I felt subdued today, after the funeral yeasterday I suppose it was only natural. Actually the funeral was more like an opportunity to go down memory lane and see people that I hadn’t seen for 20 or more years, also going to a house that I hadn’t been in for that long seeing what had changed, and what hadn’t. This was a house I had spent a lot of my childhood in, more in some instances than some of the houses Mother and I actually lived in. I rode a bike for the first time up the road, must have been around 22-25 years ago or so. I remember the ride, I was annoyed because I had just seen one of the girls do it and I couldn’t, we went inside and then I went back out to the bike and just rode up the road in sheer bloody-mindedness. That was me all over, I had convinced myself I couldn’t do it but there was no physical impediment so when the shame of being the only one not to be able to do it occured to me that was it. I learnt to swim around that time with one of the girls too. They seemed happy days, I suspect I was a bit of a bollocks though. At the drama group that we all went to in the holidays the group leader said to me after the last performance that I did there that I had come as something of an unruly brat some years before and was now maturing into a young man. Translation -you were a right bolshy little tyke and now you’re ok!! The funeral itself was at a crematorium, I hate crematoria they give me the right heebee jeebies ever since I went to my Great Aunt Betty’s funeral when I was in my teens and I say black smoke coming out of the chimney. For no rational reason other than the fact I don’t fancy being burnt I’d rather be put in the ground with something marking where I am, very hypocritical really when you think where such places are.

Today though, I didn’t sleep a lot after watching the German language zone until 2, pillock. I had to get to Birmingham for more dental gladness, my dentist was late, she is about as bad as me. She was quite well tarted up today tho’ so she must have a date later or etwas. She told me I ought to get my hair cut, cheeky cow, I explained she doesn’t know what I look like with short hair whilst I do. Besides I’m now paranoid that if I were to cut it all off -which I’m NOT, no f ing way, I might not be able to grow it back again because who knows what lies beneath, I could be bald and just not know it yet! Aaaaaaaargh! So after over 2 hours of wedging my jaw open and having burning hypochlorite in my gob I then got to set off for work. My heart wasn’t really in it, it felt almost like being there on the first day again having been away for 3 days.

Sorry, been AWOL for the last little while, I have actually drafted some blogs which are at home, but I forgot to bring them in to post them. My network connection has ceased to exist so will most likely not be back on line until April. In the meantime I shall attempt to do a blog shuttle to post at work.

Thanks to those who have posted comments, it is appreciated and discussions have been had as a result which is always good. I am nearly up to the half century of blogs posted now and over 250 hits, becoming a bit of a stat junkie!

It does look like I’ll be moving house so I won’t get frostbite on my toes in the morning anymore or have to save up going to the toilet to do it all in one go to avoid my knackers dropping off! I’m also off on hols for a couple of weeks, so I’m unsure whether I’ll be able to blog from Cornwall, we shall see.

Original Comments:

Red Baron made this comment,
OK I’ve uploaded the retrospective blogs for the 21st and 24th of March now. Enjoy.
Visit me @

comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-26 16:15:47’} GMT+01

Well this blog is prompted by an interesting point that bobred raised namely that in a democracy no-one is satisfied because everyone has to make compromises whereas in a dictatorship at least the one in charge is satisfied. OK this was in part I suspect a tongue in cheek remark but nevertheless it raises the question of what is the best method of government if there is such a thing or is it a case of looking for the best of a bad lot? I’m no expert but since this is my blog and not that of Vernon Bogdanor I shall put my views forward.

Let’s tackle those we know first and look at the pros and cons and see if that leads anywhere.

Democracy: In democracy the enfranchised (it would be a mistake to use a generic such as ‘everyone’ or ‘the people’ because this is almost always wrong from Greece to present day US/UK) vote their representatives into government to look after their interests, and therein lies the first problem, this structure already is fundamentally reactionary, for the enfranchised elect representatives for their own interests not primarily for the good of the majority. Thus those outside the system do not necessarily have any method of a voice for their interests. The disenfranchised can lobby for increased rights in a number of ways, they can seek to win round those already in the system to widen the scope of the franchise. This can usually take 2 forms, the genuine altruistic radical who fights for the equality because s/he believes it is correct to do so or the pragmatic rebel who believes it is necessary to throw the occasional bone to the masses in order to preserve the structure of the existing status quo. Another form of social change can be brought about by revolution, this doesn’t have to be a Russia 1917 style, it can be minor insurrection or civil disobedience or such like. Now the severity of this and the prospective success are not linked in the way one might think. In fact the effectiveness of such action is determined by how secure the ruling classes feel. Should their hold on power be strong they have many ways to avoid having to change such as politics and in a worst case scenario the military. If, however their grip on government is weak they will often try to put down any trouble in a more conciliatory way. Sometimes these mini-concessions are provided before such trouble, it is part of a strategy of social control, because the more pro-active the establishment is the easier it can shape social consciousness to prevent such rumblings below from ever happening.

Dictatorship: Now what we would assume is meant by dictatorship is a sort of inverse pyramid structure with a despot at the top who has in practise absolute power. In reality there are few circumstances where this simplistic view really holds water. Firstly one person cannot ever pull all the strings regardless of how much they might want to, they simply do not have the time. Thus what is generated is a series of mini-dictators who look after an individual area of policy, they have on a day to day basis autonomy but report to the dictator at the top on larger matters and at his/her bequest. This was certainly the case of Hitler in 1930’s Germany who had such a convuluted beaureacratic structure that it was often impossible to get day-to-day things done, there was a party structure which ran almost parallel to a state structure. Whilst my knowledge of the intricasies of Stalin’s time is less I suspect the MO was similar. The problem with Dictatorship is that you are dependent on the nature of a few select people, in certain matters they may be perceived to be benign, many Germans alive in the 1930’s thought that Hitler did much to ease the economic situation and provide employment. However they attributed this change to him and the NSdAP rather than looking at the global economic cycle and how war-footing economies work etc.

So what’s the difference, well in dictatorship people often do not have the illusion of a representative democracy, this means they have very little way of expressing their grievances but is the situation much different in a democracy? I would contend that it is simply a shift in who and how many hold the power, the actual representative side is a sham. look at Britain now, if you do not agree with middle-class neo-liberal politics and there are plenty of people who do not who would you vote for in an election, there is no real choice at the moment. [I hasten to add I sincerely hope that RESPECT will be able to offer at least some hope for this] If you take the US the way their system is structured the candidate in the presidential election who was voted for by the popular majority was not elected (and this is disregarding the Florida fiasco, the vote numbers issue is not under discussion) the way the electoral system is set out the final say rests with a fundamentally reactionary group hence the appointment of Bush. And yet where are the UN and EU election observers -if this had been in an African country you can bet your arse they’d be scrutinising the current election. Finally it’s not as if this is the first time irregularities have happened in the US, and Britain doesn’t even have a secret ballot so forgive me if I don’t buy into the democracy principle.

Next week: Communism and Anarchy

The Uitsmijter or Strammer Max

This is a really nice breakfast, looks good, tastes fab if you do it right, and all you have to do is cook an egg.

Take 2 thick slices of white bloomer bread
Spread with a thin layer of a flavoursome mustard
Place some good thick slices of ham on top
Poach 2 eggs until yolk is soft but not too runny
Place eggs on the ham and garnish with freshly ground black pepper

The Anja Potato Snack

This one is a bit of a gut-buster and not for the faint-hearted but it tastes niiiice!

Get a pack of Anja potatoes (I’ve only ever found them at Sainsbury’s) Boil until middle is softish but not soggy
Place whole brie or camembert in the oven and cook until middle seems liquid
Strain Anja potatoes and place in a knob of butter, roll the potatoes in the saucepan until coated. grind black pepper over them and roll again.
Use potatoes to dip into cheese like a fondue

Corned Beef Hash

No, seriously it does taste nice and it’s easy to cook.

Boil some King Edward potatoes until just soft
Cut up some onions, plenty of garlic and green chilli, fry lightly in a pan
Add a tin of corned beef to the pan before onions etc. have browned, cook until beef is hot.
Dice up the potatoes and place into pan, mix it all up. Fry until potatoes start to brown. Garnish with pepper and coriander.

Sausage, Mash and gravy – go on you know how to make it, try it again.

The Brownie-points Breakfast

This is a good one for Mother’s day, or a special morning, or when you’re in the doghouse from the night before.

Make 2 slices of toast, butter them, lay on some slices of smoked salmon.
Then make scrambled egg, don’t leave it too long you don’t want the water to drain off. put a good heap of chives and pepper in the mixture.
put the scramble eggs on the toast and salmon, serve.
If you want to be the swank master you can crack open the bubbly.

I did some blog diving last night and found some seriously good stuff. There is a resurgent Left community out there, I am particularly pleased about this. Some of the stuff is prolific and seriously well-written, it makes me feel rather inadequate at my comparitively superficial ramblings. It does give me something to aim for tho’.

I have enjoyed looking thru’ other blogs, there have been some people around for quite a while, I feel quite the newbie. This makes me feel a little better at not yet reaching the 250 hit mark.

Original Comments:

David S made this comment,
yeah some good blogs, esp. Edstrong
Visit me @

comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-22 19:28:58’} GMT+01

I was going to title this blog, what have we become but that would imply that we were once different and I don’t think we were.

I have watched 2 programs yesterday evening, one on Iraq after the invasion and the other on a racially motivated murder that took place in Texas in 1998.

My thoughts: Iraq first, the program was looking at the rebuilding of the country and the policing etc. The British military were having problems sorting out the situation in Basra because the people did not have the confidence in those who had been members of the previous police force but the British were having to use them because they were the only ones with the requisite training. It’s a sticky wicket I’ll grant you, but I would have liked the program to ask the ultimate question. WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU EXPECT? You remove all the hierarchy and bomb the infrastructure out of a place how do you expect it to look and function. Did the US and the UK think that somehow things were just going to return to normal or what? I really don’t get it. It seems clear to me that the primary objective was to free-boot into the country remove the leadership secure the oil (and notice neither of these objectives have been as chaotic as the aftermath for the people of Iraq) What happened to the people and the country after the objectives were achieved must have been foreseen, if not then one must ask serious questions regarding the competence of the military leadership. Basically my theory is the did what they wanted knowing that they’d just busk the rest, it wasn’t so important and it’s not as if the Iraqi people can make too much of a fuss about it. Well, it appears the people are making as much fuss as they can in protest.

The second program was more disturbing perhaps because of the seeming ordinariness of the people in it. It detailed the murder of a black man by 3 white racists the actual facts of the murder were very distressing, suffice to say those who may be aware of Steve Biko in South Africa will understand the MO. They had a white film crew with the white population of the town and black film crew with the black population. I have to say the black population seemed more well-adjusted than the whites, there was none of the racism black to white that one might have expected. On the white side there was a lot of the old “I don’t think they should paint him (the victim) as this saintly man, don’t get me wrong I don’t agree with how he died but he wan’t the man they are painting him out to be.” This exact arguement I came across in Eltham after the murder of Stephen Lawrence some years ago. I worked there for a bit and worked with someone who knew Lawrence vaguely and their statement was almost word for word the same. It shocked me at the time, I have become a little more sanitised to it now as I have heard it in a number of cases since. One of the white guys was plastered in white supremacy tatoos, all over his upper torso, what angered me most of all was that his wife had a number of children from another father, this guy cannot fail to pass on some of his ideals or basic sway of his beliefs to these children, young children one just a baby. It makes my blood boil that this poor baby who is born with such innocence is likely to be polluted with the racist shite and like as not due to the tacit acceptance by many in the white community in such places this lunacy would never be beaten out of him before it took hold. Now I’m not going to put everything on the shoulders of this one guy, racism is not the product of an individual’s consciousness it is the product of a failing society. This guy as it happens appeared to go through something of a conversion towards the end of the program and apart from inter-racial marriage he claimed not to ‘have a problem with other races’. How sincere this is only he and his family may ever know.
The thing that caused me concern from the black and non-racist white community was their reaction to the sentencing. People celebrating the passing of a death sentence regardless of the circumstances fills me with deep discomfort. What of the relatives of the condemned? They are naturally given the same punishment as the relatives of the victim, both parties innocent but the second party put into this punishment because the state doesn’t really know what to do with the perpetrator. I cannot sanction the state taking a life of someone when they have condemned them for the crime of taking a life it just seems ludicrously simple an arguement to counter. Furthermore a deterrent? Well correct me if I’m wrong but the US has an extremely high murder rate despite capital punishment and many other countries have less of a problem despite the lack of this ultimate solution, or should that be ‘final solution’? Sorry is that a bit too extreme?

What I see is that society appears to make no progress in trying to increase understanding between communities, between races, cultures, creeds etc. this leads to a position of mistrust and insular behaviour on all sides and purely gives strength to the extremists who either benefit from people’s lack of desire to stop them or from the ignorance leading to heightened mistrust and fevour against one side or another. Look at the BNP in this country, they would like you to think that the reason life is shit is because Johnny Foreigner has come over here and taken the jobs and the benefits that would otherwise come to you. Granted they don’t say it in such stark terms anymore but try telling me that’s not what they think. Yes there are problems on all sides, yes the asian community in this country do often seem threatening because they cocoon themselves away from what is comically known as the ‘indigenous population’. Ask yourself why this may be? How many people when going to another country for a period of time more than just a holiday will buck against the trend to get to know the ex-pat population to combat homesickness? Do the British abroad learn someone else’s language, no they are one of the worst countries for not doing this. The concession British people abroad seem to make is if you don’t understand what I have said to you in English I’LL SAY THE SAME THING LOUDER, and…….possibly……slower……ac-cen-tu-a-ting-the-words-ver-ry-pat-ron-ising-ly, obviously if you are a foreigner in your own country you are deaf or a little slow or both. I quite understand the asian people in this country forming their own communities and helping each other etc. after all the Irish/Italians and Jews tend to do much the same. It is a community thing and THAT’s why the Brits don’t understand it. The danger is that too much time insulated from other cultures promotes the same mistrust and feeling but I think the Carribean and Asian 2nd generations have actually done a good job on the whole balancing what they perceive to be their British identity with their foreign heritage. The gift they give back is difficult to measure after all how many British meals did you eat this week using british ingredients as well? Do you only ever listen to music that eminated here? Even the classical stuff? Name more than 5 British classical composers, ok you can have Handel if it makes it any easier he’s kind of naturalised! Finally how many people who claim they’re British have any idea what their actual heritage is. You say you’re British… so do you mean a Celt or a Roman in which case you’re Italian, or an Anglo-Saxon (German) or a Jute (Danish) a Viking (Scandinavian) a Norman perhaps (French at the time of 1066 but previously norse). Good old followers of St. George eh, who was St. George then? He certainly never came anywhere near England and I think he was a Turk or such like tho’ I can’t remember exactly. You want an English patron Saint, you can’t have him, we already bagged St. Patrick ho ho ho!

Original Comments:

Bob Red made this comment,
a couple of dis-jointed points for you to consider, if they make any sense. Please read the first one carefully otherwise it may make me out to be something that im not.
What angers me is the fact that ‘johnny foreigner’ came over to our country to work when we needed them the most (ie. during the war) and then when it was over, all the brits expected their jobs back. Racism and stereotypical beliefs ensued, branding foreigners, muggers and thieves, whist the vast majority of foreigners continued to do exactly what they had been doing in this country for so long:
Working hard to dispel these rumours and myths, build communities, and generally try to get along with everyone.
Until, the younger generation came on the scene. This younger generation decided that they quite liked to be thought of as muggers and criminals, because it gave them respect. They thrived upon the fact that people were afraid of them, and generally went round with a huge chip on their shoulder, citing reasons for their attitude as slavery, even when they havent got a fucking clue what those times were really like. Single handedly they have torn down everything their parents and grandparents have worked so hard over the years to uphold, and that, quite frankly, is appaling. the question is, whos fault is it? is it the younger generation for being naieve, or have we as a country let them down by being so damn selfish?
I know where of I speak, my dad was one of those ‘johnny foreigners’ who came here and worked his arse off, and had to suffer the racist taunts and abuse.

Another point, and by no means am i setting any political preference here, is this:
Which clock is more accurate? One that is stuck at 12:00 all the time, or one that is 10 minutes fast?
The answer, is the clock stuck at 12:00 as twice a day, it will be spot on.
Apply that to the political scene:
Which is more fairer to the public? a democracy, or a dictatorship?
In a democracy, no one ever gets everything they truly want, but in a dictatorship at least one person does… the one in charge.

Maybe something to think about…

comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-21 11:22:45’} GMT+01

I’m going to follow bob red’s lead and give a little info about myself. If you feel like following suit then by all means leave a comment and link to your site. I have nicked most of bob red’s questions for continuity.

  • 1)What is your name and age?

    Redbaron -don’t even attempt to get my real name there are only 3 people in the world with the same surname as me. I’ll give you a clue one of my ancestors was a Classics Professor at Trinity College Dublin at the turn of the 20th century.

    2)Why redbaron?

    Well it was as a result of my politics at college I got the nickname from one of my lecturers, it stuck and I grew to like it quite a lot.

    3)Where do you live?

    Yeah right, not a chance there are enough bloody wierdoes here thank you so much. Somewhere in the M1 corridor within 50 miles of Bob Red, that’s all you’re getting

    4)What are you curently listening to?


    5)What is your favourite food?

    Free-range grilled Sausage, grilled Oak-smoked back Bacon, basted fried Egg, Galtee Black Pudding, Fried King Edward Potato, Haggis cooked by me or my Mum.

    6)What do you do for a living?

    Just changed from being a computer field engineer to an IT specialist at a University

    7)Which celebrity would you most like to ‘do the wild thang’ with?

    I’m over 30 I’m not as choosy as I once was but if you pressed me … Gail Porter

    8)If you were a sign, what would it be?

    Wide Load

    9)If you were trapped on a dessert island, and had somehow gotten a CD player with an infinite powersource, what CD would you take with you?

    One with a load of MP3s on to maximise the space, plenty of Zeppelin, U2, The The, The Kinks, Kraftwerk, Starsailor

    10)If you could be doing anything right now, what would it be?

    See question 7! [Sorry Bob that one was too easy and do you blame me?!]

    11) What is the one thing you would like to see happen to you this year and dont say winning the lottery coz thats too eazy, ya bastard!

    I could refer to question 7 again, but would be a bit of a cop out so let’s say I’d like to see myself being a couple of stone lighter.

    12) Who do you admire?

    My Mother, John Pilger, George Galloway, Noam Chomsky

    13) What do you dislike (briefly)?

    Vaccuous arrogance, racism, the right-wing, banks, trans-national corporations, cold, driving, tossers, coffee.

    14) Favourite Films

    The Ipcress File, Get Carter, Goodbye Lenin, Les Ripeaux, Faraway So Close, Breaker Morant, Shawshank Redemption,

    15) Favourite Flower?

    The Thames (think about it!)

Original Comments:

Bob Red made this comment,
well it nice to get to know you dom! just one thing though, if -[censored]- isnt your real name, then what made you pick it? sorry for being nosey, its just that the name rings a bell with me for some reason, and its been bugging me for a while now… where have i heard it before? or perhaps it could be deja vu. Anyway, like what youve done with question 15, had to think about it for a while though 🙂
comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-17 21:11:45’} GMT+01

Bob Red made this comment,
sorry mate, didnt mean to give the game away! i was debating wether to say anything or not, but thougth it was your pseudonym. Have you by any chance written any letters to newspapers such as the metro? failing that, maybe its just my brain backfiring!
comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-17 23:18:48’} GMT+01

Leah made this comment,
ok i’ve found the questions i was looking for. here endeth the search.
comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-18 21:19:48’} GMT+01

Bob Red made this comment,
I wish i could remember what the letters were about, but im sure it must have been something political. anyways it was probably deja vu or something. By the way whats the difference between a basted fried egg and a normal fried egg??
comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-18 22:55:52’} GMT+01

David S made this comment,
you admire George Galloway, he is a crook. My dad knew him, he filled committees with his cronies, horrible man.
Visit me @

comment added :: {ts ‘2004-03-22 19:32:54’} GMT+01

Well, my last little rant felt good, I enjoyed it and felt liberated. I don’t quite know where the bile came from for this next one it sort of crept up on me.

Housing – Now this is obviously something everyone can give their 1/2p worth on so here’s mine. The situation regarding housing in this country is a shambles. Rents are too high for many people, landlords have far more rights than tennants and yet what is the alternative. Sure if you’re already on the housing ladder or you’re blessed with a credit balance of at least 5 figures it’s all tickety-boo but if not then the general opinion appears to be who gives a ….

There are a couple of things on renting that get my goat, the security deposit for one, you have to hand over money in case you trash the place, fair enough, but ostensibly because you’ve already paid the money and the landlord cashes it you are treated as having already trashed the place. I can’t think of another example where someone can take your money like this. The landlord can then turn around when you leave and claim that you did all this stuff to the property and you have precious little recourse to protest other than take them to court, more money outlaid on spec. It seems de rigeur now for lanlords to take money for general wear and tear which is not supposed to be the tennants responsibility. What about the council tax, make the bloody owner pay it, they own the house they will benefit from the proceeds of sales etc. ok perhaps a bit too extreme, but if it is someone’s second or subsequent house then it’s often just a moneyspinner, make them pay. Maybe you could bring a threshold in so that houses over a certain value the tax is paid by the landlord that would seem fair.

Buying a house, yeah good luck, heaven help you if you live in London, or your credit rating is dodgy or you just don’t want to take out something 6 times your salary etc. etc. What’s the politician’s answer, we’ll build “affordable housing’ in key areas, affordable to whom, I haven’t seen any figures and affordable is a very relative term. Who’s going to control the affordability? If an estate agent offers a house at an affordable price who’s to stop some git coming along and paying far more than the asking price? What about the facilities in the areas, are they being looked at. Where I live is one of these targetted areas and there already isn’t a GP list that hasn’t stopped taking patients and there are no NHS dentists who’ll take registration. The hospital has had a poor report, the council in their latest review has come out as one of the worst in the country, council tax last year went up by one of the highest percentages in the country and this is supposed to be an area they want to entice people into living, not bloody likely, most of us incumbants are looking for a way to get out!

And then you have the countryside mob, don’t build on our green fields etc. etc. Now I’m all for protection of the environment I really am, renewable enrgy and that. What winds me up is that most of these countryside lot are just nimbys they aren’t positive lobbying for housing for the poor on brown field sites and many of them don’t kick up a fuss when it comes to building luxury penthouses and the like it’s just that they don’t want the riff-raff. Now I don’t wish to generalise here, I’m not talking about the fluffies and the spikeys the direct action greenies etc., it’s the countryside alliance and the range-rover parish council brigade that I want shot. “56% say keep fox-hunting” my arse, 56% say keep fox-hunting as long as the hounds hunt the squire rather than the fox, now that I’d pay good money to see…tally-ho!