Contemplating my penchant for attracting nut cases, immediately after the incident I heard on the radio that a bicyclist in his 50s was killed zooming down a hill on a busy thoroughfare training for an upcoming race. I walked into a room where a television report displayed a mug shot of the poor guy who hit the cyclist, as if he was a murder suspect.
He is a respected retired surgeon who is now burdened with the emotions of killing a person when fault in the accident is unclear: can a driver of an automobile be responsible for hitting a cyclist zooming down a steep hill at full speed? The doctor has been charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle. The cyclist leaves behind his wife, two daughters, a son and four grandchildren.
This tragedy should not have happened. But it did because a zealous percentage of bicyclists believe they own the roads built for motor vehicles. This cadre of extreme cyclists appears to be increasing in numbers, some imbued with righteous dedication that makes them think they have the moral right-of-way, as well as blamelessness when they place themselves in harm’s way against motorized vehicles.
Around our way, we don’t seem to get the aggressive nutter cyclists so much. There are many bikes but they tend to be pedalled along the double yellows, they keep out of the way and use hand signals.
This Spiked piece about Australia’s egalitarianism is a typical piece from a distance. It all depends where you are and in which circles you move.
The further you move from the major cities or the lower down the socio-economic order you go, the more egalitarian, at least in people’s minds. The more Labor you are, the more egalitarian and the more likely you are to believe that the country is egalitarian. Continue…
Château-Gaillard was the favorite castle of Richard the Lionheart (1188-1199) in Lower Normandy. It also received its present name when the king, beholding for the first time the castle built on his order with its shining white stone walls, double ramparts, pont-levis and thirteen strong towers, exclaimed: “Quel château gaillard” – “What a merry castle!” At least this is how Maurice Druon describes it in The prison of Château-Gaillard.
In May 2008, while excavating around the castle, the archaeologists of Bristol University made a surprising discovery. They have unearthed two graves side by side. Continue…
“An experimental car has crashed near a school in British Columbia, Canada. Only five cars like this have been produced. From the article: ‘A release from the Transportation Safety Board (TSB) confirmed the flying car was “an American corporately registered I-Tech Maverick SP Powered Parachute” that had crashed. The vehicle, known as “Maverick,” uses a 100-metre runway to take off and flies under a parasail. But it also needs a 100-metre runway to make a safe landing.’”
It depends which book you have on your shelf. The latest to enter the LBJ-did-it is being spoken of in the media right now. I have one here – Who Shot JFK, by Robin Ramsay and he is an LBJ-did-it man.
It revolves around Billy Sol Estes, Cliff Carter and Mac Wallace.
On August 9th, 1984, Douglas Caddy, Estes’s lawyer, wrote to the USDJ, implicating Johnson in the killings of Henry Marshall, George Krutelik, Ike Rogers and secretary, Harold Orr, Coleman Wade, Josefa Johnson, John Kinser and JFK.
It went LBJ-Carter-Wallace according to Estes. Continue…
Much as it sticks in the craw to admit the AC72 is not seaworthy and yet to insist the challenge must go on, this is the political side of human nature saying the show must go on but the designer side knows, deep down, that these things are unworkable.
One of the killer factors in team sport at elite level is uncertainty in contracts.
In 2010, the Geelong star player refused to either confirm or deny he would return and meanwhile, the coach/manager who had taken them to two flags was secretly in talks to go back to his old club as assistant to the manager of Essendon.
The result was corrosive, debilitating. This season, speculation is over one Harry Taylor. Now either Harry has reassured his teammates or it was all hogwash as they’re doing well. But it is corrosive and it does sap performance when it is known it’s all about money.
Last evening I was tuned into 5Live and certain things came through loud and clear – Mancini was still loved by fans, the low quality players like Silva had let them down. Mancini himself said it was rubbish that he would be replaced.
City supporter after City supporter phoned in and every single one said the same thing – that the summer was going to be the key – buy the right players with Mancini having input and then give him on last chance.
Once upon a time there was a fairytale, a series of events so improbable that you will laugh of course. It required melodramatic baddies and heroes, though the heroes were never to appear onstage, only false heroes. It’s a tale of satire and jokes played on people and its plot begins way back in the mists of the new usury which began to sweep Europe.
The financial paradigm
Usury, masquerading as free enterprise – this was the neat idea through which to exert control.
That is, the elite had the resources to buy up, not using these vast resources until crises, then making a killing whilst the ordinary people, including the small businessmen, went under in mockery of the spirit of free enterprise and the ordinary people did it hard – Grapes of Wrath and so on.
BBC 5Live was on and the magnitude of the David and Goliath story was being played out. Hell, I’m not a Wigan supporter but to hear all those people virtually in tears, this was massive. Even City supporters were conceding that Wigan deserved it.
And sorry but I’m going to draw the parallel of Geelong FC downunder because they’re up there for character and commitment – even the opposition conceded that yesterday. He made specific reference to the character of the club, a club which is playing less skilled football on paper, getting beaten in all the key indicators but still winning.
And that can be extended to football in general. I hear what people say about the massive payouts to players, the prima donnas, the drugs, the whole yawnfest – you’re preaching to the converted here on that.
And yet there was something magical today and I wonder if even the most ardent anti-sport person can’t see this – what it does to achieve. We can live a life of dull routine – work, home, sleep, work and yes, it’s important but these sorts of things today are created from nothing – they give hope to people, they say things ARE possible, it’s not all doom and gloom.
Some dignitary in Wigan was asked what it meant and he said, “Everything.” Yes, it’s so. And downunder, the same. It’s been well noted that when the team does well, the whole town lifts, productivity shoots up and absences drop. It’s a lifeblood thing. Continue…
“If Wigan played on this pitch every week you would fancy them to beat most teams.”
“Will Wigan pay the price for not making more use of all their possession?” Looks that way.
Such a long 90 seconds!
About a minute.
19:17 One of the greatest moments in football – a champion team will beat a team of champions. Prima donnas versus esprit de corps and guts. Today, a guy at work said, “City how far?” I thought to myself at that time, “Oh please let there be an upset, please let it happen.”
BRITAIN faces the prospect of yet another unemployed, angry Scottish person at large.
As I’ll be busy most of tomorrow, allow me to issue my apology now. I sincerely apologize for any offence to any Scots people of any clan without fear or favour [except maybe the Campbells and Macdonalds] and I think Govan is a wonderful place for a holiday.
Watch them come out of the woodwork now to say these boats should be banned etc. No they shouldn’t – this is state of the art we’re talking about here. This is the cutting edge.
In my time racing A Class, there was always the danger because the rig packed such power but in general, thought put into the control systems paid off. You paid extra for the smoother running gear and it worked a treat. But there was always the danger. And one day the trapeze snapped and I was flung through the air ignominiously into the drink. Continue…
Some look at the upheaval in Syria through a religious lens. The Sunni and Shia factions, battling for supremacy in the Middle East, have locked horns in the heart of the Levant, where the Shia-affiliated Alawite sect has ruled a majority Sunni nation for decades.
Some see it through a social prism. As they did in Tunis with Muhammad Bouazizi — an honest man who couldn’t make an honest living in this corruption-ridden part of the world — the social protests that sparked the war in Syria started in the poor and disenfranchised parts of the country.
At first I was inclined to agree with Chuckles that this was pure narrative, blaming lack of water and yet … and yet … Continue…
It’s halftime at the football and the two sides are evenly matched, with us a whisker in front at 12.30 our time.
Our 28 scoring shots to their 30. They were too inaccurate. Phew. Sigh of relief. One more top team to go next week and that’s the set. Needless to say, next week is going to be near impossible, at their homeground in Adelaide. They’ve not been beaten there for some time.
Match report a little later [separate post]. Continue…
“Brussels is one of the largest spy capitals in the world,” said Alain Winants, head of the Belgian State Security Service VSSE.
He guesstimated that there’d be “several hundred” [spies] plying their trade at any one time, chasing after a broad array of topics, from trade issues to security policies.
Yet officially, the EU itself doesn’t have an intelligence service of its own. It’s dependent on the national intelligence services of the member states that supply it with “finished intelligence.” Officially.
Or maybe that should be “perspectives”. It’s the issue, along with a sense of discretion, initiative and unwasted effort which is blighting us in society at this time.
An example is a council sending out workers to paint a 13 inch double yellow line on a road to stop people parking there or devoting large amounts of council tax to “finding oneself” workshops in the community. Nothing wrong with finding oneself but not when most people are subject to council tax maybe 20-30% higher than legit, given the level of reduced services and high parking fees in carparks.
Perspective applies everywhere. Interesting that someone should bring up the word obsession the other day because we get mini-obsessions whenever something dastardly comes up. We heard IDS the other day, we’ve now heard Lawson and in the States, Obama and it fuels two or three posts, sometimes four but is then overtaken by new developments.
There are themes which recur. I was surprised when someone mentioned that gays seem to be my N1 priority. Eh? Have a quick look down the 30 posts on this front page and tell me which you think amount to either obsession or recurring theme? From where I sit here, it looks like the “obsessions” are remembering the victims rather than the perps, PCism and tulips. Let’s see what it is a week from now. Continue…
1. When Gene Kelly asked what she’d like engraved on her gravestone, she replied: ‘ People sometimes had a problem placing her face, but they never forgot her pins.’
The ask: in 1957, what would she wear on those pins?
2. Received an Academy Award nomination in her first talking film, switched later to comedy. In 1929, reviewer Pierre de Rohan wrote in the New York Telegraph, “She has a glamour and fascination for both sexes which have never been equaled on the screen”.
The ask: the film which lost the studio money but made her a star. Continue…
In 2010, before the General Election, there was an altercation between a major blogger and a group called Albion Alliance over the referendum.
He maintained that pre-election 2010 was the wrong time and it should have been just before the next, i.e. 2015. The theory was that things would have disintegrated so far in the EU by then that people might be amenable. If it were given in 2010, then people might be persuaded to accept repatriation of powers, not withdrawal. This was certainly the Tory stance.