Drat. It happened again.

I keep meaning to update this thing. I really do. But things keep getting in the way.

Since my last update, TLW & I have taken Roxy for her first trip outside London; we stayed in a farm in the Lake District for a few days and she loved it. Although she did seem a bit vexed that we didn’t let her get some of that moving food with wool on the outside… We then had her over in Norn Iron for a few days as well, and BOY did she like that. Running on the beach, getting to meet loads of new people, all good. Perhaps it was less good having to sit in a car for hours to get there and back, but I think we all enjoyed the time there.

Aside from that, work has been bonkers; the dog has managed to ruin our fence so isn’t allowed into the garden unattended until we get it repaired; our boiler died on a freezing day and needed replaced; and cars have been developing new faults with depressing regularity.

As I say, life got in the way. But I’ll try to be better.

Such a shame

If last week’s game between Ireland and Wales was a heartbreaker (seriously: I’m sure that the stress of it took weeks off my life expectancy), then this weekend’s was a heartbreaker for thousands who were there, and a shame for all those planning and watching it at home.

Still, not as heartbreaking as it was for Scotland. That was an impressive collapse in the second half…

Things that are unexpectedly nice

Walking the dog in the early morning at this time of year.

You get about an hour of peace and quiet, with the normal sounds of the city subdued. You get to meet a couple of other dog walkers and talk shite for a minute or two. You get to see the sun starting to rise and hear the urban dawn chorus. ‘course, in this part of the world that means that you get deafened by parakeets rather than traditional songbirds, but hey.

Also, the park seems very calming and quite busy at the same time; on the way around during daylight I might see half a dozen dogs and their humans; in darkness I see many more by their use of lit collars and torches. But still, it’s eerily quiet. Except for the scores of early morning flights into Heathrow, naturally, but then I’m odd and like them as well.

I’m a fan. At least until the rain returns.


Look, if they don’t have nuclear powered proton packs and permanent hells with funky black and yellow tape on them to trap the ghosts in, then they’re not Ghostbusters.

I recommend that Belfast City Council treat these people like the fakes that they are, and commit them to some form of lunatic asylum while being over confident in the non existence of ghosts. That always works in the movies.

Why wasn’t that there when I was?

Ah, competition. Why wasn’t that about when I was buying gas in Belfast?

Friction between the two main suppliers in the greater Belfast market has intensified with both Phoenix and Firmus claiming victory in the battle for market share.

Firmus Energy sparked off the latest exchanges by announcing an end to its summer price freeze but promising not only to honour its commitment to be at least 7.5% cheaper than Phoenix but increase the discount to 10%.

Phoenix hit back immediately with a statement clearly aimed at Firmus.

“We said earlier this year that we believed large introductory offers from other suppliers were designed to lure customers and would not be maintained moving forward,” said Phoenix Supply.

Awesome. Two companies, one a young upstart and one established player. Hopefully that’ll help keep the prices a bit more reasonable…

Non-news news

Shocking news on the political front: Brown was really a bit of a shit.

My question is this: who, exactly, didn’t realise before time that Brown was a bit of a shit? A control freak, a self-righteous wingnut, a back-stabbing twat? Who thought he would be a good PM? I don’t know; I’m not a fan of Labour1, but I could name about twelve people from their 2007 front bench that I’d rather have had in Number 10 than Brown.

So it’s not really news that Brown had people briefing against his hand-picked Chancellor. It’s not news that he had his head in the sand over how bad the deficit was (and is). It’s certainly not news that people in Labour were discussing how to get rid of him soon after giving him power. But it is useful to see how so many of the people still on the opposition front benches (a) were too scared of action to get rid of the fool and (b) are still pretending that he did a decent job.

I thought opposition was supposed to be easy…

1 – Or most political parties, to be honest. I have a soft spot for the Monster Raving Loonies, at least they admitted that they’d be shite in power.

A bit much

I can see the benefits of RSS feeds; keeping track of news is easier, outputting data for use in aggregation is easier. Weather forecasts can be distributed nicely and other worthy things can be done.

But putting an RSS feed on a car? That seems odd. Plus, knowing how pretty much every company in the world likes to share data without permission, it’s rife for abuse…

Well done Nissan. F- all round.

Worth waiting for

Yesterday’s Grand Prix was one of the most interesting and exciting of recent years. And that despite the fact that there was two hours of filler in the middle of it while everyone and everything drowned on the circuit. DRS was perhaps a little too effective, but that was the only complaint I had. There were accidents, overtaking, spins, excellent overtaking manoeuvres and random scary moments galore. Me likee.

Bring on Valencia. Although I doubt it’ll get anywhere near the amount of rain…

There’s the real surprise

I’m not surprised that a chunk of FIFA executives are in trouble for corruption. I’m not surprised that Blatter is trying to (and likely will manage to) brazen it out. I’m not surprised that most of the national organisations are going to try and brush it all under the carpet.

No, I’m just surprised that FIFA have an ethics committee in the first place. Hell, I’m not even sure that they know the meaning of the word…

The joys of dog ownership:

(Part VI in a continuing series)

When they get injured, even a little bit, they act very very confused. Like, for example, when they do damage to a paw and need to get it looked at, they seem to be surprised every time they walk on it and it hurts.

In other news, we’re off to see the vet about fixing it… That’s joy VII – vet bills.