February 15, 2015

Movies4Men. And movies to make you riot.

There is a TV channel called Movies4Men. Those who are fleet of brain and nimble of cleverness will instantly recognise that it is a TV channel of movies… which are for men. These movies are not for boys. Nor are they for those of a female disposition. Likewise dogs, hamsters and fish are discouraged from viewing this channel. I have instructed my wife not to view this channel, it is for men only. Occasionally I may come home to find that said channel is in fact on our TV. She assures me that this is, of course, an error. Or sometimes, she has kindly turned on the channel ready for me for when I return home. It is good to know that my wife knows who is the Boss in our house.

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January 24, 2015

The letter “W” and why it must go

The worldwide web was invented by Tim Berners-Lee in the early 90s. (No, you haven’t accidentally wandered into a History lesson – all will become clear as I progress. Actually “clear” may be a little too high as an objective. I will progress but clarity is never guaranteed.) Tim Berners-Lee’s proposal for a WorldWideWeb (please note – all one word!) became reality and search engines appeared. Said search engines referenced websites with addresses beginning with “www”, short for world wide web. This looked fine on screen but what happens when you say it out loud? That’s “double u double u double u“. A total of NINE syllables. I get tired by the second “W”. Three of them is just too much. “Worldwide” (in my dictionary) is one word so the abbreviation for “Worldwide web” should really be “ww”. That would have been a 33.33% reduction in verbal effort. Or if he’d kept to WorldWideWeb as one word that would have been just “w”. But it was not to be. So “www” it wwwas.

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January 18, 2015

The Spam Police!

I remember the first time I won the lottery. I was quite surprised. Not least because I hadn’t entered the lottery. Later that same week I won another one. And then another. At one point I kept a count of how much I had won but once it got into the hundreds of millions, I was rich enough not to bother.

And then came the bequests. I had been selected to receive a very large sum of money because someone had “found my email address on the web” and was sure I was a worthy recipient. They hadn’t been in touch with the lottery people or they would have known I was already a millionaire and didn’t need any more money.

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January 10, 2015

New Year Resolutions

I am not one for New Year resolutions. I know my limitations, as they say. Already a victim of the “To-Do-list-which-just-gets-longer” syndrome, I don’t want to be making myself another list of things which I am unlikely to complete. So I will simply lower my standards… Perhaps the trouble with New Year resolutions is that they are too high and mighty (for me, at least). There’s nothing like a bit of lowering of the sights to bring about some true inspiration. Hmmm. Perhaps my resolutions should go like this…

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December 7, 2014

The moviness of English and the stayiness of maths. Alright? All right!

The problem with English is it’s always moving. “English and Maths” are often lumped together as a pair but they are an odd couple. English likes to move with the times, she’s hip and groovy, she’s down with the kids. Right on. Maths is still wearing that brown corduroy jacket with elbow patches.

When I was at school, “alright” was not alright.┬áMr Wright – which is a great name for a teacher and has an almost Dickensian fitness for purpose here – was my English teacher. He told me that “alright” was not acceptable. It has just occurred to me that if his first name had been Alan then Al Wright would be telling me that “alright” is not all right. Indeed.

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December 3, 2014

It’s another sign… but this one’s a slogan

There’s a shop I visit. This is the shop where I purchase chocolate. So, as you can imagine, it’s one I frequent on a regular basis. There’s a large sign on the wall that reads “We’re here for all that you want. And a little bit more.” Depending upon your outlook on life in general this would appear to indicate either (a) a caring and generous establishment or (b) a cynical attempt to trick you into thinking this is a caring and generous establishment.

But I have to ask the question: Do I wish to support a business that intends to give me more than I want?

Would it happen like this…? Continue reading

November 30, 2014

It’s a sign. And a Capital Offence

Yesterday, I had need to “spend a penny”. It happens to all of us sometime. The convenience I visited happened to be one that was also an Accessibility toilet. The one with the red cord. The frightening red cord. The emergency cord that I am convinced I’m accidentally going to pull. In some freak turn of events, I lose my balance and reach out instinctively, grabbing something to stop me from falling… and the thing I grab is the dreaded red emergency cord. Accidentally I will call out three fire engines, a couple of ambulances, two nurses and Barry with his first aid kit. Continue reading

November 23, 2014

Doing It Now! (Tap to snooze)

Somewhere in the house is a book with a very jazzy cover – bright yellow and black stripes as I recall. Big, bold red letters that declare: “Doing It Now!” It is quite possible that the title has more than one exclamation mark. Such fevered punctuation indicates an enthusiasm that can only be admired. I think this book may have been purchased while I was a member of a book club. Do people join book clubs now? Surely they just have the digitised version fed into their brain while they are asleep. The book club would, each month, send you a brochure with a selection of titles. One of these was the book of the month. And this would be sent to you automatically unless you returned a form with an X against this title, thus indicating that thanks but no thanks, you didn’t want this one. I am fairly sure that this strategy was designed so that people would forget to send back their form with the X and thus books would be sent out to people who didn’t really want them. Ah, the inventiveness of capitalism. Continue reading

November 15, 2014

41, XXL and why Diesel underwear makes me chuckle

41… That’s forty-one.

I was recently rather concerned about my waist size suddenly blossoming from a lithe and rather fetching 32 to a blubbery and, quite frankly, ridiculous 40 inches. I reduced my cookie intake. I started walking again at lunchtime. I even dusted off the exercise bike. (The main function of the exercise bike is as a clothes hanger. The handlebars are ideally suited for this purpose. So much so that I had forgotten said bicycle’s genuine function as a pedalling device.) Having dusted off said exercise bike, I even considered getting on it. One thing at a time though.

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November 8, 2014

Sticking to walls and putting on glasses

While considering creating my own superhero hideaway, I have come to consider the practicalities of being a superhero. I know that an appreciation of such a genre as the superhero does require a suspension of belief. Which is fine by me but there are some things that don’t quite make sense.

Now Spider-Man doesn’t have a secret HQ. Or at least, he didn’t when I was reading the comics all those years ago. Perhaps by now he has his own super secret headquarters under the streets of Manhattan. Or perhaps, in keeping with the spider theme, he hides under the sofa and skuttles out while you’re watching TV. Anyway. When he lived with his aunt in suburban New York, he would often swing in and out of the window in his Spider-Man garb. And no one noticed.

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