The old comments problem is back – interesting timing that it should be today.

So yes, those who wrote and asked – it is doing weird things, putting people into pending, taking them out, blocking regulars, even spamming them.  Please bear in mind that this is not me doing it – there are too many other things occupying the time, leading into next week and I’m trying to stay on top of those.

And an amusing addition – the skin issue came back strongly last evening – think it was spring cleaning the other room which led to that.  Idiot that I am, I did wear gloves but they were a pair used before – might have had chemicals inside on the lining.  So couldn’t blog if I wanted for now.

There’ve been things knocked off of late around this place too, plus other issues.  Criminal minds never see that it is ordinary people they’re hurting, not the rich.…

The gradual demise of award winning “plonk”

Astringent-WineIn many ways it had to come, the supermarkets’ continual driving down of suppliers’ profit margins and the supermarkets’ domination of the bulk wine trade meaning suppliers have to be of a certain size to fulfil the vast quantities required.

Anybody, and that’s the vast majority of you, who buys their wine from supermarkets will have noticed in the last couple of years that the range on offer in most of them has become, for lack of a better word moribund, one major chain in particular has a range that has hardly changed at all in that period to such an extent that you could go round blindfolded and take the correct bottles off the shelves.

I have hinted at the reasons for this before and it is simply becoming more evident. The reasons are multiple, firstly as in my opening line only the big boys can compete with price and quantity, but it is not just that.…

Saturday [2]

Vox Day’s name is Theodore Beale. His politics are roughly the same as mine, the lads and some lasses who visit this blog and though he likes to provoke, like me, what he is essentially saying is quite mainstream … for the 50s, LOL.  And quite relevant for 2015.

He has this crazy notion that the family is important, that politicians are corrupt, that people get back what they put in, that what’s yours is yours and not to be taken from you by some madcap state socialist scheme, that the state should stay out of our lives. You get the idea.

Here’s how the “thinking, intelligent” left, the Rachel Maddow left, see him – it’s very close to the ranter against Farage in Saturday [1]:

Theodore Beale, on the other hand, is Cerberus sitting on top of the bone pile breathing fire and wreaking mayhem for the joy and the attention of upsetting everyone, puppies and kitties alike.


Night follows day:

Gwyneth Paltrow broke her much-mocked attempt at shopping on a food stamp budget in search of some chicken and black licorice.

The multimillionaire mom was derided last week when she accepted the #FoodBankNYCChallenge from celebrity chef Mario Batali. The idea is to experience how difficult it is for families to live on the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) — better known as food stamps.

So she set out with $29 — the amount the average person on food stamps receives — and every intention of showing those strapped for cash how to do it.

I’ve lived like a King in the past [not sure if you know the King family, they live in Chipping Norton] and dined at some of our fine eateries- at one time dining out three times a week.

I’ve also lived like a pauper and am about to do so perhaps two weeks from now.…



Bourton-on-the-Water’s most famous attraction is the one-ninth scale replica of the village itself. Built in the 1930s and opened in 1937, the replica accurately reflects the village as it appeared in 1936 and was constructed using authentic materials – locally-quarried limestone for walls, and miniature Cotswold stone slates for roof coverings. The replica model was built to the last detail including traceried windows of the churches, the dry-stone boundary walls and the vernacular details of the buildings. For trees the craftsmen used miniature bonsai type trees which are carefully pruned to keep them to scale.


Saturday [1]

The other day, I took a taxi to town and conversation moved from football to politics. He opened with: “As long as the Tories never get in.” Good, tribal, Labour man.

He asked about mine and I mentioned my political journey in one sentence.

“That lot,” he could barely conceal his anger. “They want us out of Europe – we do that, we’re totally f***ed.”

I had the temerity to ask where he got that idea from.

“Well facts, that’s what’s gonna happen.”

“Yes but who told you this? Because it’s going to do the opposite, it’s going to open the world to trade, including Europe.  It’s the EU we’ll be out of, not Europe.”

He didn’t want to know. This morning, about the time the iPad shut down and wouldn’t open again, I was unfortunate enough to see this at the Guardian, referring to Farage:

What a piece of work this creature is.

No Mars without us – NASA

The key to Mars is the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), which is scheduled to launch in 2020 with the crazy goal of putting chunk of asteroid into orbit around the moon. NASA will use it to trial critical technology, like Solar Electric Propulsion and autonomous robotic technology.

ARM will also be a crucial test of the Space Launch System (SLS) designed to take astronauts and cargo beyond low Earth orbit.

Bolden said that astronauts will even land on the moon, which will function as a way-station to Mars. As for private companies like Mars One and SpaceX? Bolden doesn’t see them as any kind of competition to NASA:

“No commercial company without the support of NASA and government is going to get to Mars.”


Moving? Not quite yet …


68 Spitfarm Road, Opossum Bay

I was faced with a small issue last week. My landlord has lost his dear lady wife and the ‘estate’ is in probate. Fortunately the house I live in is wholly owned by him and is therefore not in consideration. But it gave me cause to think about options.

I have always had an eye on a beautiful little village that I can see across the water from the ‘Lookout’ near where I live. It is ‘remote’ in that it is at the end of a long winding road around what is called ‘South Arm’, and about 50kms from Hobart, 60 from me.

tas small 2

A property came on the market for rent. 2 bedrooms, nicely appointed, right on the beach (as are most of the properties in the village of Opossum Bay).

So I took a trip to see it. Pity it turned out that the owner only wants to rent it out for 6 – 8 months while he goes walkabout (these days, done in an RV).…

Antonov AN-2


Lovely aircraft, but the headline claim is complete bollocks. Any aircraft with a low enough stall speed and slats can fly backwards in a headwind. C150, Rallye, Tiger Moth, etc etc.

In my yoof, I watched the Tiger flyers at Virginia airport on a windy day, flying down the runway to level with the control tower, throttling back, drifting back to the beginning of the runway, and repeating.

One wag, took off, got some altitude, throttled back and drifted back to the beginning of the runway, and landed.

Haiku: “Don’t forget the article was written by a millennial (I hesitate to use the
word “journalist”) for an audience of millennials …”


“Antonov An-2R on ski Ryabtsev” by Sergey Ryabtsev – Licensed under GFDL 1.2 via Wikimedia Commons –

Langham Dome

what is it

On a beautiful day we decided to go to the North Norfolk coast but drove a different route to the normal one and came across this place, we just had to stop as I had never seen anything like it before.

Unfortunately it was not open that day but outside had a plthors of information boards and picnic tables that had the history of the place and the airfield underneath plexiglass tops and even a speaking tabloid.

The Dome was one of forty built during the war for the training of anti aircraft gunners, it used a still frame photo projection technique on the inner walls of the Dome for the puposes of gunnery training and is one of only six left, this one recently restored by a trust is a listed historic monument, surely one of the youngest structures to receive that title, I will now have to return on an open day and have go on the anti aircraft set up that has been installed, small boy stuff I know, but why not.…

The fundamental interconnectedness etc.

250px-Saint_RaphaelThis is a tale which began with two themes – one was “not fit for purpose“, the other “the cascade effect“.

Going straight to source, e.g. Wiggia’s first post today and the NHS, one could drop in another theme: “Britain is not working“, both literally and figuratively.  And a fourth theme: “people will not face reality“.

This post could start with at any one of those points.  Taking the last first, this blog is constantly on about that lack of facing reality and as sure as night follows day, my mention of Alice Gross, the poor girl who was murdered by a predator, caused a letter saying I was blaming the victim.

That’s rich levelled at me as I’ve been defending victims all my working life – hell, even ordinary Britons are victims and so UKIP stands up for them.  However, being on the side of the victim does not mean the victim is always entirely innocent in what he or she did.…


Let’s open with Wiggia’s quiz:

We went to the coast Wednesday. As it was so good weatherwise, we took a different route to normal and came across this below. Sadly, it was not open on this day but it had lots of well laid out information on the site and leaflets explaining it, new to me.

What is it?  Answer at 13.30 a.m……

what is it

Rossa on matters political:

As he says “It goes instead on pure, unadulterated, 100 per cent renewable, sustainable and Fairtrade, organically-sourced, copper-bottomed eco bollocks.”

Chuckles on trial and error – watch this and remember your first thought:

He comments:

Interesting that the journalists are absolutely incapable of interpreting something as anything other than in adversarial contest. They are so steeped in narrative and rhetoric, that it is essential that there be a ‘winner’ and a ‘loser’.

The concept of SpaceX doing this to see what happens, and that it they succeed they won’t ‘win’, but simply have a better understanding of what they need to do to ultimately make it bulletproof and routine, is not a concept journos can get their heads around.

NHS blues

I expect that similar stories could fill the blog on a daily basis.

The morning two days ago, I take No 1 shopping. In the car park we see a couple we knew from awhile back and naturally stop and talk.

The wife was evidently not well and I asked what was wrong……………..

She told the tale of two weeks ago when she had to come home from work as she could not carry on, ( it is her own business so not a case of slacking), she phoned the doctors for an appointment, stressing it was urgent as she was vomiting and hallucinating by then.

The reply was that there were no appointments that day, phone in the morning, stressing the urgency. The practice said they would get the doctor to phone in a couple of hours.

This he did and went through the symptoms with her but said nothing, she had difficulty understanding much of what he said as he is foreign but persevered and got most of it.…