Friday, August 27, 2004

Just Curious

I suspect some readers will have the answer to this:

Until recently, I thought a millilitre was a small insect.

While in Ireland I was intrigued that the distances on all the signposts are in kilometres but all the speed signs are miles per hour.

Looking at the cars, their speedos unsurprisingly measure MPH. However, I wonder whether the distance recorders (called odometers don't you know) measure miles or Kms. Either way the Irish must be good at doing little sums in their heads to work out how long it takes to get anywhere.

I like this half-metrication lark. Like with us at the budget. They always say how much a gallon of petrol has gone up even though we stopped buying gallons years ago.

I once bought carpet whose width was in metres, but the length was in yards.


Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Frozen Man

I came across this moving story about the perfectly preserved bodies of three Austrian WW1 soldiers being found on a glacier.

Forgive me for sharing with you the James Taylor song Frozen Man. Simply reading the lyrics you may get the impression that it's a trivial, shallow effort. However, it's one of my "untouchables". A simple song that I never attempt to sing. It's so good, it's worth the price of the album (New Moonshine) on its own.

Hear it and weep.

Jerry Radcliffe

Here is Paula's answer.

She might have to eat a lot of cheese though.

Monday, August 23, 2004

If Only Places

There's a town in the south of France called Condom. I wonder if it is twinned with Maidenhead.

Feltham in Middlesex. That ought to be twinned with Brest.

And I do hope that Falmouth has a town crier:


Friday, August 20, 2004

If There Were Three Sexes

What if there were three sexes (A, B and C)?

It occurred to me that there would be two possibilities for normal procreation (of course there would be deviants. There are always deviants).

  • Method 1: When Sex A gets together with Sex B they produce a Sex C offspring. Similarly B with C produce an A, and A with C produc a B. In this world there would be three "normal" sexual preferences whereas with two sexes there is only one (excluding the deviants). This would cause friction in the family: "Offspring, why can't you be like us - you're such a disappointment". There would be fights and people would be unhappy.
  • Method 2:All sexes (A,B and C) would need to get it together in a "menage a trois" and produce a randomly sexes offspring. What are the chances of this happening? Who would be on top? I reckon the divorce rate would be scandalous.

Am I going mad?

Thought For The Day

Life is like a sewer. What you get out of it depends on what you put into it.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

You Can Buy Anything on Ebay These Days

Go on, make a bid.


I apologise for blog interruption. I've been touring with the family in Ireland. We stayed in Dublin for a couple of days, then went to the country in County Clare, Kerry and Cork.

It's a nice place. I love mucking around with the musicians in the bars and the scenery is gobsmackingly great (when you can see it through the rain). I recommend anyone to go, but there were some disappointments:

  • It's bloody expensive (especially when you're carting around three kids)
  • The traffic is terrible. I remember as a child seeing the "come to Ireland" ads on the telly. The main selling point was deserted roads. Travel all day and all you're likely to see is the odd horse and cart. No more.
  • Bloody Bungalows Every few hundred yards it seems someone has built a new magnolia-rendered block; a mini-palace with underdeveloped lawn patch of a garden. Meanwhile the old stone cottage lies abandoned as if they are trying to say "Look what we used to have, but LOOK WHAT WE HAVE NOW!"

On the plus side, it was refreshing to see a sign pointing to the "Dump". Around here they call it a "Civic Amenity Site" which is, of course, bollocks.

On the way back, the bloody ferry caught fire. I kid you not. A very dodgy moment indeed when the captain said they had a fire and were "trying to put it out". It had us all contemplating the temperature of the water and the distance to swim. They put it out, but it buggered two of the four engines and we limped home (if a boat can limp) two hours late.

Monday, August 02, 2004

Blogging Loss

I can no longer see Birdman. Not from my work computer anyway. And when I'm at home, I'm disinclined to use the computer and generally can't get near it for kids.

I can't see Birdman because the Thought Police have censored it (I say "Thought Police", but it is really a program, without any thought, "protecting" me from unsuitable websites). A spot of investigation reveals that the offending text is likely to be a comment referring to Cyril Smith being a "Big t w a t sighting".

I have to do that: spell the word with spaces in between, to prevent my own blog becoming unreadable by me. Which would of course be a disaster.

And now to memory loss: last year, for the first time, sales of digital cameras exceeded those of conventional cameras. One benefit is that the storage media (memory cards) are virtually indestructible. I suppose it's nice to know that even if you're stupid enough to nail yours to a tree, there's still a chance you can retrieve the images.

A disbenefit of digital cameras is that far fewer photos are actually printed. In the longer term, this is a much more worrying memory loss.

Full story here.