Monday, 31 March 2008

Fun Monday #15

This week's Fun Monday is hosted by Robin, the Pensieve one. her assignment is to tell her our favourite inspiring quotations.

You actually got my favourite quotation in last week's Fun Monday, but in case you missed that one, here it is again:

"A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most." George Bernard Shaw.

Perhaps it's time I took that quote to heart again and started feeding the good dog.

In fact, most of my favourite quotes come from George Bernard Shaw. Here are a few more:

"A fashion is nothing more than an induced epidemic"

"Hegel was right when he said that we learn from history that man can never learn anything from history."

"If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance."

"You are going to let the fear of poverty govern your life and your reward will be that you will eat, but you will not live."

There are a few others I really like too:

Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else. Judy Garland

I hope to be the kind of person my dog thinks I am.

And although this isn't really a true quotation but, being a bit of a Trekkie, it still makes me giggle:

"Bother," said Pooh, "Eeyore, ready two photon torpedoes and lock phasers on the Heffalump. Piglet, meet me in transporter room three. Christopher Robin, you have the bridge."

Writing this post has reminded me of another quote that I used to have pinned up on my wall.. It came from a Susan Howatch book, Glamorous Powers, and in it, she quoted from W.R. Inge at the beginning of many paragraphs. There was one in particular that really stuck with me and for the life of me I cannot remember what it is. I have just spent hours Googling but I can't find them. For once, Google has failed me. I had the book but it's long gone and I think I am going to have to buy it again because it's really going to annoy me now.

Head over to Robin's to see what other quotes inspire people!

Sunday, 30 March 2008

Get your thinking caps on!

It seems that next Saturday's blogpost will be my 500th! That's a bit of a milestone isn't it?

So, I need to come up with some way of marking the occasion. I will try to think of some sort of giveaway but the topic of the main post itself is entirely up to you! What do you want me to blog about? What would you like to know? Post your suggestions up here and I'll pick one or two of the best to write about.

*Angela wanders off and wonders why she's setting herself up for a fall!*

Saturday, 29 March 2008

Did you know.....

....there are two 5 o'clocks in a day? Apparently there's one at a crack of sparrow fart as well.

My friend Nettie and I got up at this forsaken hour this morning to go to a Car Boot sale to raise some money for Greyhound Gap. I love Greyhound Gap and I'll do anything a lot of things to raise some funds, but please, please please don't ask me to do a car boot sale ever again. It's soul destroying. You sell good stuff so cheap and still people haggle you to drop the price. You'd have though we were asking £100 for stuff, not a £1. Seems it must be a matter of principle at these things not to pay the asking price.

Just pleased that we managed to raise £150 and that, given the weather here over the last week, that it didn't rain.

Friday, 28 March 2008

Saved by cake!

It's been a stressful few days.

Apart from not sleeping well and getting the 3am weepies, my period arrived out of the blue (which probably goes some way to explaining the 3am weepies) and the usual cramps and headache came with it. On top of that, it's particularly busy at work as we are short-staffed because everyone is trying to use up their holiday allowance before our year-end next week. So there was just me in the office yesterday afternoon when there is normally four of us.

Why is it that when you are on your own, every time you go to the loo the phone rings? You're always mid-flow and you sit there thinking "come on, come on" then you have a mad struggle to get your knickers and jeans back up because sods law says that if you run into the office with your underwear akimbo, somebody will pick that moment to walk through the door.

During one such moment, I just managed to grab the phone to be greeted by Mark, the local cafe owner, saying "Your telephone answering time is appalling". He was trying to make a joke. I, on the other hand, was most definitely not in the mood for jokes. I bit my tongue. Hard. And spat out..

"I. am. Here. On. My. Own. Mark. What. Do. You. Want." I don't need to explain that tone of voice do I? You all know exactly where I'm coming from don't you?

"Well" he said, cottoning on to the mood pretty damn quickly for a man. "That's answered my question as I'm coming round with cake for you".


"Mark, I think I love you. Get here NOW!"

Now Mark's cakes are all homemade and they are to die for. Maria, who makes most of them, has cake-making down to a fine art and one day I may just kidnap her to become my personal cake-maker.

Mark duly arrived with three pieces of freshly made Victoria Sponge, beautifully moist and oozing raspberry jam. Never has cake tasted quite so good.

Spirits lifted, I even managed a smile.

Thursday, 27 March 2008

Words of the Week #3

Thank you all for your kind comments yesterday, they are very much appreciated . Hopefully I will get my head back in one piece at some point!

Anyway, this week's "Words of the Week" are:

Dwelling in or under the earth; also, pertaining to the underworld

comes from khth├│n, the Greek word for earth

Inkhorn \INK-horn\
1. Affectedly or ostentatiously learned; pedantic.
1. A small bottle of horn or other material formerly used for holding ink.

derives from the name for the container formerly used (beginning in the 14th century) for holding ink, originally made from a real horn. Hence it came to refer to words that were being used by learned writers and scholars but which were unknown or rare in ordinary speech.

Peregrination \pehr-uh-gruh-NAY-shun
A travelling from place to place; a wandering.

comes from Latin peregrinatio, from peregrinari, "to stay or travel in foreign countries," from peregre, "in a foreign country, abroad," from per, "through" + ager, "land."

Crapulous \KRAP-yuh-lus\
1. Suffering the effects of, or derived from, or suggestive of gross intemperance, especially in drinking; as, a crapulous stomach.
2. Marked by gross intemperance, especially in drinking;

Crapulous is from Late Latin crapulosus, from Latin crapula, from Greek kraipale, drunkenness and its consequences, nausea, sickness, and headache.

Tintinnabulation \tin-tih-nab-yuh-LAY-shuhn\
A tinkling sound, as of a bell or bells.

derives from Latin tintinnabulum "a bell," from tintinnare from tinnire, "to jingle."

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Why I love my dogs

The Lurchers woke me up at 3am this morning, needing to go outside. Nothing unusual about that but last night I could not get back to sleep. 3am is a bad time not to be able to get back to sleep. Your mind wanders and ponders and goes off in all sorts of directions. It wasn't any particular issues that were keeping me awake but more the state of my mind at the moment.

I seem to be constantly at the end of a very short fuse. I can be absolutely happy and fine one moment, and something will happen and I lose it. Zero to train wreck in a split second and that really can't be good for my blood pressure. Stupid little things annoy me and patience and tolerance are at an all time low.

There is one underlying issue that is the cause of this but I'm not ready to go there just yet.

Back to 3am, or rather, 4am by now... and I found myself getting really upset. Why was I so miserable? Why am I so short with everyone? Is the rest of my life going to be like this? Crying into my pillow, I felt a nudge in my ribs. Lurcher No.1 had been curled up at my feet but, sensing my distress, she moved up the bed and lay full length alongside me, and started nuzzling me with her nose, offering her comfort.

And that's why I love my dogs.

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

The Funeral

Himself attended The Bunny's funeral yesterday.

He'd kept the body in a box as Mr Neighbour had suggested the children would want to say goodbye.

Mr & Mrs Neighbour have been very good about this I have to say. It would have been easy enough for them to say that "Brodie done it" but they don't want the children to turn against him, or any other dog for that matter.

So himself ceremoniously carried the box around to The Neighbours, the children said their goodbyes, and he stood by whilst they buried The Bunny.

When I saw Mr Neighbour this morning, I asked how the children were. Apparently Daughter Neighbour said that she wanted to "go out and cuddle her bunny but he wasn't there". Mr Neighbour rather wryly commented that that was a first and neither of the children were much involved in looking after any of the The Bunnies anyway.

Himself has explained about the Guinea Pigs needing company of their own species and the dangers of housing them with rabbits (thank you Jan and Lesley). Fingers crossed the information has sunk in.

Monday, 24 March 2008

Fun Monday #14

This week's Fun Monday host is Swampy over at Anecdotes, Antidotes & Anodes. This is her assignment:

Choose a topic/theme and make an alphabetical list of words, phrases, photos...however you want to share your topic/theme.

Topics can range from pet-peeves, vacations, people who have influenced your life, jokes, favorites, philosopher's quotes/sayings, birds, flowers...anything. The sky is the limit. Your ABC list can be depicted with words, photos, illustrations... You are limited only by your imagination. Be funny. Be serious. Be creative. Be sarcastic. Be there, or be square.

And, yes, of course you may bend the rules. Just entertain us. If you can't do all TWENTY-SIX, do as many as you can. (If you have kiddos, let them join the fun and help with the list. Make it a family, brainstorming session.)

I've pondered long and hard about what theme to use for my ABC list. Should I make it clever? Funny? Thought-provoking? Should I just break the rules and write something completely unrelated? No, but I am going to totally cheat! This was an A to Z meme that I was tagged with almost a year ago and I'm going to repeat it for this Fun Monday, although I have updated it a bit because it's amazing what's changed in the course of a year! Boring? Yes, sorry. Unimaginative? Oh's that third Monday of the week brain fart thing!

A- Available or Single? – Ummm...neither actually!

B- Best Friends? – Lots but Niki, Ali, Nettie and Ginny immediately spring to mind.

C- Cake or Pie? – Pie

D- Drink of Choice? – Tea, or very strong kick-me-in-the-butt coffee

E- Essential item? – PC, mobile phone. How sad.

F- Favourite Colour? – Black. yes, yes, I know black isn't a colour it's a tone, don't be so picky. Tsk!

G- Gummi Bears or Worms? – Neither

H- Hometown? – Born in Cardiff, South Wales. Live in London

I- Indulgence? – Hmmm......sleeping in

J- January or February? – January, my birthday!

K- Kids and Names? – None of those!

L- Life is incomplete without? – Living

M- Marriage Date? – No way not ever

N- Number of Siblings? – Two younger step-brothers

O- Oranges or Apples? – Oranges

P- Phobias/Fears? – Ladders

Q- Favourite Quote? – A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most

R- Reasons to smile? – Life is good...almost. And that's just good enough.

S- Season? – Assuming this means a favourite one....Autumn

T- Tag 3 People? – Nah, go ahead and do it if you feel like it!

U- Unknown Fact About Me? – If I told you it wouldn't be unknown anymore would it!?

V- Vegetable You Hate? – Broad beans

W- Worst Habit? – Thinking I know the right way to do everything when I don't.

X- X-rays You've Had? – Dental and chest

Y- Your Favourite Foods? – Thai, Chinese

Z- Zodiac? – Aquarius

Go visit Swampy to find out who else is participating this week!

Sunday, 23 March 2008


A selection of facts:

1. Our neighbours are away.

2. Himself is looking after their six rabbits.

3. He took Brodie with him when he went to feed them yesterday.

4. He didn't put a muzzle on Brodie.

5. Brodie is a Greyhound.

6. Brodie is very quick at snatching things.

Can you see where this is going yet? Yes, I thought you might.

I suppose I should be thankful he only got one of them. Himself was mortified and as the children apparently want a guinea pig, he has offered to buy one for them. But that's not the point really is it?

Saturday, 22 March 2008

Slowly but surely

You might remember that back in February I threw a hissy fit over the state of the area outside my front door and the general state of the garden. Things didn't improve much over the following weeks.

Then on Thursday I got stuck in. I started clearing the area in the yard (which really is a yard as opposed to the garden which is at the back!) that has become overgrown. Now I'm left with a patch of bare earth that I'm not sure what to do with so I've bought one of these mini-greenhouses and I think I might put it there as it catches a lot of afternoon sun. I've planted up two pots with some Margarite to go outside the front door and put some more herbs in the herb bed. I've planted up some other pots with small shrubs and bedding plants which have been dotted about and will give a nice splash of colour.

I've also sown some Dwarf French bean seeds to go with the tomato and chilli-pepper seeds I sowed two weeks ago. They are currently living in our shed which, because it has the freezer and a fridge in it, is warm enough for them, and under the window should be light enough. But with everything else in that shed it's starting to get a bit crowded so fingers crossed the mini-greenhouse will do the job.

Himself has also been off for the last two days and has got stuck in to paving the yard at the side of the house and a smaller area in the garden that was getting very muddy (not that the rest of the garden isn't muddy but this patch is just worse than the rest). He's doing a great job and it makes such a difference already.

I think we are starting to have a home that, on the outside at least, looks like someone might care about it. The inside is a different matter. We have had "weather" over the last few days. One minute sunshine, torrential rain the next. Every time the Lurchers, Brodie or Himself and I walk in, we leave muddy footprints everywhere. There's just nothing I can do about it so, much as it's driving me insane, I need to take a deep breathe, wait for Himself to finish and then clean right through. Cleaning it and then seeing it get all muddy again over and over will just be soul-destroying!

Friday, 21 March 2008

Round-up of the week

When I started blogging, one of the aims was to use it as a diary. I was always hopeless keeping a diary as a child and, consequently, many memories escape me. So I thought writing everything down in a blog would be a "good idea". Well, it would be if I remembered to blog the minor details of my days. So, this is what has happened this week. It's not hugely interesting so feel free to move right along as I'm sure you have much better things to be doing than coming along for a trawl through my week.

Monday - day off work. Lurcher No.1 has had a few lumps develop over the last few months and whilst the vets were fairly sure that they were just harmless fatty lumps, they weren't quite prepared to commit to that on the basis of "feel". And so they shouldn't. Instead they charge me lots of money to stick some needles into the lumps to send off for testing. Lurcher No.1 does not like needles. She knows what my vet is up to, even when their backs are turned and she starts screaming blue murder and crawling up the door trying to break out. Vet hatched a plan. They'd shave a little hair off over the lumps and spread on some anaesthetic cream. Bingo. Job done. And then my bank card was declined. I hadn't given a thought to how much this would cost and neither had I thought to check my bank balance. I should have realised that 3 days before payday might be a bit iffy.

Tuesday - I have to go to work and leave Lurcher No.2 and Brodie the Foster at home. They were fine for the two hours I was at the vets on Monday so I'm figuring they'll be OK for 3.5 hours in the morning and 3.5 hours in the afternoon when I go back after lunch. Except Brodie the Foster has the squits. He had me up 3 times during the night and it's coming out like water. All morning my heart is in my mouth not knowing what I would be coming home to. I needn't have worried. He was pretty fast out the door to the garden but he had been clean inside. What a star this boy is.

Thursday - Brodie learns to play. I decide to garden. Brodie decides to help. It's raining, the garden is muddy. Brodie is muddy. The Lurchers are muddy and wet. My house is muddy and wet. Why am I gardening in the rain? Good question and one I can't answer to anyones satisfaction.

Brodie is in danger of hurting himself. He is food obsessed and sticks his nose in everything. Regardless of whether it's a boiling saucepan off the stove or the oven. There's food and he's in! Himself put a board across the entrance to the kitchen (no door). Brodie yips and yips because he can't get in. Then he learns that if he grabs the top, it will fall down and his plan is back on track. Not any more! Last night I got a baby gate off Freecycle. It's too big for the kitchen so it goes in the hall and stops his plans right in their tracks again. Permanently this time.

Friday - Today is my Sunday. Yes, I know it's Friday but as I'm working at the weekend and have had yesterday and today off in lieu, today is technically my Sunday. Tomorrow will be Monday, Sunday will be Tuesday and Monday gets confusing because I'm on Wednesday and everyone else is still on Monday. Except I have a day off on Monday and Tuesday so come Wednesday, which will be my Monday again........I will have a brain fart.

Happy Easter!

Thursday, 20 March 2008

Words of the Week #2

Gimcrack \JIM-krak\, noun:
1. A showy but useless or worthless object; a gewgaw
1. Tastelessly showy; cheap; gaudy

The origin of gimcrack is uncertain. It is perhaps an alteration of Middle English gibecrake, "a slight or flimsy ornament."

Hortatory \HOR-tuh-tor-ee\, adjective:
Marked by strong urging; serving to encourage or incite; as, "a hortatory speech".

is from Latin hortatorius, from hortari, "to exhort, to incite, to encourage."

Imbroglio \im-BROHL-yoh\, noun:
1. A complicated and embarrassing state of things.
2. A confused or complicated disagreement or misunderstanding.
3. An intricate, complicated plot, as of a drama or work of fiction.
4. A confused mass; a tangle.

Oh yeah....welcome to my imbroglioed world.

Imbroglio derives from Italian, from Old Italian imbrogliare, "to tangle, to confuse," from in-, "in" + brogliare, "to mix, to stir." It is related to embroil, "to entangle in conflict or argument."

Pulchritude \PUL-kruh-tood; -tyood\, noun:
That quality of appearance which pleases the eye; beauty; comeliness; grace; loveliness.
Pulchritude comes from Latin pulchritudo, from pulcher, "beautiful." The adjective form is pulchritudinous.

What an ugly word for such a pulchritudinous meaning!

Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Wordless Wednesday


Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Chook Chook Chook Chooky

That's what I can be heard to say at 6.30am every morning these days. The neighbours, who already think I'm one sandwich short of a picnic, now know I'm one sandwich short of a picnic. Yes, the hens have arrived.

They are in a bit of a sorry state having spent all of their short lives in a very small cage churning out eggs day in day out. But, within a few weeks, their feathers should have grown back and they will have fully adjusted to their new life.

Twenty-four million chickens are currently battery farmed in Britain ensuring the low prices of eggs and chicken products. In small cages not large enough to turn around, thousands of chickens endure the monotony of life spent eating and laying. Whilst it is easy to lay the blame with the farmers, they are only supplying a demand for cheap eggs. If more people gave some thought to where their eggs came from, maybe this practice would stop.

These four, who I've yet to name so any suggestions would be appreciated, are amazing! One took to freedom with ease, with a second follwing closely behind. The third is well on her way and the fourth is still a little shy but is slowly getting the idea of freedom.

And The Lurchers? Lurcher No.1 has turned into a slavering beast screaming "let me at 'em". She usually has to be dragged outside for a pee but now she's first at the door. Lurcher No.2 is pretty laid back about the whole thing, he wanders up to the run, says hello and then mooches off to find something more interesting. Brodie just barks at them. And pinches the eggs that I thought I'd put safely out of reach!

Monday, 17 March 2008

Fun Monday #13

This week's host is Nikki and My Husband Calls Me Weird and this is her assignment:

1.) I don't know about you, but my family is great at creating strange words that only we know the meaning. Some were created when the kids were first learning to talk, others came about when our tongues were twisted and the word came out funny. Either way, the words stuck and we still use them in our daily conversations. What created words does your family use?! Please share the story behind the word if you remember. If you don't have a made up word then tell us about the unspoken way you communicate with someone. Do you and your significant other have a look that means "This party is boring, lets split" or do you have a look that your kids know means their butt is in serious trouble? Please share!! And a picture of the look would be very entertaining!


2.) In honor of St. Paddy's Day, please share your worst green beer story!

I have no idea what green beer is so will stick to the first one!

We have a few spoonerisms that we use in our house. (After last week's Fun Monday you must be wondering whether we ever use proper English!)

Chish and Fips (Fish and Chips) - Someone, and I think it was my Mother, came out with this backwards phrase many many years ago and it's just stuck

Distructions - We use this one instead of "instructions". It seems more appropriate somehow.

Fsh - as in "what do you call a fish with no eyes - Fsh" Yes, corny but it makes me giggle and it has also now become part of our regular vocabulary.

The next two came about after a very drunken evening with friends. We had been out for the day on one of said friend's boat on the River Thames. At some stage we came across a bevy of swans who were having a very bad day, resulting in a major swan punch-up. Fast forward to later that evening when much alcohol had been imbibed and I came out with "Those vons swighting!". Amid the hilarity that followed some bright spark, sticking to the German sounding theme, came out with "Herr Rons" for Herons. That evening went down in the annuls of history and both phrases remain with us to this day.

UPDATE: I forgot one! As I was just preparing dinner I remembered another one we use regularly - "indegrents" for ingredients. No idea where that one started!

Head over to Nikki's to find out what the other FMers have to say today!

Sunday, 16 March 2008

Sunday Snigger

LAWYER: What did the tissue samples taken from the victim's vagina show?
WITNESS: There were traces of semen.
LAWYER: Male semen?
WITNESS: That's the only kind I know of.

LAWYER: Did you ever sleep with him in New York?
WITNESS: I refuse to answer that question.
LAWYER: Did you ever sleep with him in Chicago?
WITNESS: I refuse to answer that question.
LAWYER: Did you ever sleep with him in Miami?

LAWYER: So, after the anaesthetic, when you came out of it, what did you observe with respect to your scalp?
WITNESS: I didn't see my scalp the whole time I was in the hospital.
LAWYER: It was covered?
WITNESS: Yes. Bandaged.
LAWYER: Then, later on, what did you see?
WITNESS: I had a skin graft. My whole buttocks and leg were removed and put on top of my head.

CLERK: Please repeat after me: "I swear by Almighty God..."
WITNESS: "I swear by Almighty God."
CLERK: "That the evidence that I give..."
WITNESS: That's right.
CLERK: Repeat it.
WITNESS: "Repeat it".
CLERK: No! Repeat what I said.
WITNESS: What you said when?
CLERK: "That the evidence that I give..."
WITNESS: "That the evidence that I give."
CLERK: "Shall be the truth and..."
WITNESS: It will, and nothing but the truth!
CLERK: Please, just repeat after me: "Shall be the truth and..."
WITNESS: I'm not a scholar, you know.
CLERK: We can appreciate that. Just repeat after me: "Shall be
the truth and..."
WITNESS: "Shall be the truth and."
CLERK: Say: "Nothing...".
WITNESS: Okay. (Witness remains silent.)
CLERK: No! Don't say nothing. Say: "Nothing but the truth..."
CLERK: Can't you say: "Nothing but the truth..."?
CLERK: Well? Do so.
WITNESS: You're confusing me.
CLERK: Just say: "Nothing but the truth...".
WITNESS: Okay. I understand.
CLERK: Then say it.
CLERK: "Nothing but the truth..."
WITNESS: But I do! That's just it.
CLERK: You must say: "Nothing but the truth..."
WITNESS: I WILL say nothing but the truth!
CLERK: Please, just repeat these four words: "Nothing", "But", "The", "Truth".
WITNESS: What? You mean, like, now?
CLERK: Yes! Now. Please. Just say those four words.
WITNESS: "Nothing. But. The. Truth."
CLERK: Thank you.
WITNESS: I'm just not a scholar.

LAWYER: On the morning of July 25th, did you walk from the farmhouse down the footpath to the cowshed?
LAWYER: And as a result, you passed within a few yards of the duck pond?
LAWYER: And did you observe anything?
WITNESS: I did. (Witness remains silent.)
LAWYER: Well, could you tell the Court what you saw?
WITNESS: I saw George.
LAWYER: You saw George *******, the defendant in this case?
LAWYER: Can you tell the Court what George ******* was doing?
WITNESS: Yes. (Witness remains silent.)
LAWYER: Well, would you kindly do so?
WITNESS: He had his thing stuck into one of the ducks.
LAWYER: His "thing"?
WITNESS: You know... His thing. His di... I mean, his penis.
LAWYER: You passed close by the duck pond, the light was good, you were sober, you have good eyesight, and you saw this clearly?
LAWYER: Did you say anything to him?
WITNESS: Of course I did!
LAWYER: What did you say to him?
WITNESS: "Morning, George

Q: What is your date of birth?
A: July fifteenth.
Q: What year?
A: Every year.

Q: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?
A: Gucci sweats and Reeboks.

Q: This myasthenia gravis-does it affect your memory at all?
A: Yes.
Q: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
A: I forget.
Q: You forget. Can you give us an example of something that you've forgotten?

Q: How old is your son - the one living with you.
A: Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can't remember which.
Q: How long has he lived with you?
A: Forty-five years.

Q: And where was the location of the accident?
A: Approximately milepost 499.
Q: And where is milepost 499?
A: Probably between milepost 498 and 500.

Q: Trooper, when you stopped the defendant, were your red and blue lights flashing?
A: Yes.
Q: Did the defendant say anything when she got out of her car?
A: Yes, sir.
Q: What did she say?
A: What disco am I at?

Q: Were you present when your picture was taken?

Q: Did he kill you?

Q: How far apart were the vehicles at the time of the collision?

Q: You were there until the time you left, is that true?

Q: How many times have you committed suicide?

Q: So the date of conception (of the baby) was August 8th?
A: Yes.
Q: And what were you doing at that time?

Q: You say the stairs went down to the basement?
A: Yes.
Q: And these stairs, did they go up also?

Q: Can you describe the individual?
A: He was about medium height and had a beard.
Q: Was this a male, or a female?

Q: Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a deposition notice which I sent to your attorney?
A: No, this is how I dress when I go to work.

Q: Doctor, how many autopsies have you performed on dead people?
A: All my autopsies are performed on dead people.

Q: All your responses must be oral, OK? What school did you go to?
A: Oral.

Q: Do you recall the time that you examined the body?
A: The autopsy started around 8:30 p.m.
Q: And Mr. Dennington was dead at the time?
A: No, he was sitting on the table wondering why I was doing an autopsy.

Q: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
A: No.
Q: Did you check for blood pressure?
A: No.
Q: Did you check for breathing?
A: No.
Q: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
A: No.
Q: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
A: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
Q: But could the patient have still been alive nevertheless?
A: It is possible that he could have been alive and practising law somewhere.

Q: You were not shot in the fracas?
A: No, I was shot midway between the fracas and the navel.

Saturday, 15 March 2008


This will mean not very much to a lot of you but today Wales won the Rugby 6 Nations Grand Slam! Not only that but this competition also gives us the Triple Crown and the Championship. And I am a very proud and happy bunny tonight!

Brodie, my latest foster has also arrived today. He is an absolute sweetheart who just wants to please. He's clean as a whistle in the house and, although is completely food obsessed and will counter-surf given half a chance, he has been as good as gold! He desperately needs some weight on his bones, he's been in our kennels for nearly three months and although he held his weight fine, the last few weeks it's all been getting a bit too much for him so he really needed to get out and into a foster home....and here he is!

Friday, 14 March 2008

Moving right along

I can think of absoluely nothing to say today that you might find remotely interesting. I am tired and my brain is having trouble in stringing words together (trust me, it's taken me three goes to write just that sentence without mistakes).

So, I shall thank Alison and Fiona who have both kindly given me this award over the last few days. Thank you both!

The other award that I've not acknowledged on my blog, which is nothing but downright rude really, is from the lovely Jo Beaufoix and I can't tell you how long I've coveted this one!

I've always liked to consider myself a bit off the edge (although that's probably wishful thinking) so to have a mad skillz award is proof of the pudding and the icing on the cake really (yeah, guess who's on a diet a becoming food obsessed. And being on a diet is, of course, the reason I have eaten a bar of chocolate and a pastry this afternoon. "Willpower, willpower, where for art thou willpower".)

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

My Handsome Boy!

Every now and then you press the shutter button on the camera and you just know that by sheer fluke everything has come together and you have managed to capture something just right!

Our bird table sits just a few feet outside our sitting room window and I was standing in the room photographing the birds and squirrels as they came over to feed. Lurcher No.2 happened to look out of the window and saw a squirrel sitting on the fence. He was absolutely transfixed and I took my chance!

I am really pleased with the result. All natural light on an overcast but bright day and it has had minimum processing. I know the crop is a bit tight on the right hand side but the kitchen window was in the background and was completely blown out and it really distracted from the picture.

In other news, I am picking up my chickens on Sunday! They aren't now coming from the Battery Hen Welfare Trust - they had a waiting list stretching out to May and, whilst I was happy to wait, by sheer coincidence I mentioned it to a friend who just happened to be having dinner that night with someone involved in another battery hen rescue organisation and they were desperate for homes. One quick phone call later and it's all arranged!

Oh, and my new canine foster arrives on Saturday! It's going to be a bit of a busy weekend

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

The Art of Procrastination


1. the act of procrastinating; putting off or delaying or defering an action to a later time
2. slowness as a consequence of not getting around to it

I have this down to a fine art.

Every month we have a Board meeting at work. As Secretary to the Board, it is my job to take notes and write the minutes of the meeting. In order to complete this job, I get to spend the following day working at home so that the distractions of the office do not disturb me. Ha! What about the distractions at home!?

I get up full of good intentions. This month I will settle down and crack the minutes out without getting distracted. But first, I must just walk The Lurchers. That done, I sit at my desk and start work.

Ahh...hold on, The Lurchers just need their breakfast. Whilst they're eating, I'll just make a cup of tea. As I fill the kettle I notice the tap is starting to get a build up of limescale and make a mental note to do something about that when I finish work.

Sit down and start typing again. The limescale on the tap suddenly starts to bother me. Get up and spray on the limescale remover. Go and sit down again. Remember that it shouldn't be left on too long. Get up and rinse it off. Now the sink looks grubby so I might as well just do that whilst I'm there.

Sit down again. Mmmmm...feeling hungry now so get up and get some cereal. It's difficult to type and eat cereal so this seems a good time to take a ten minute break and browse a few websites.

Tell myself that I must work for half an hour before I do anything else. Must just pop to the loo first though. Whilst in the bathroom, notice that the washing basket is overflowing so gather up an armful and head for the washing machine. Ah, there's already a load in the machine so take five minutes to hang that on the dryer. Oh. Washing already on the dryer so take that down and put it away in the bedroom. Ah, bed's not been made yet. Quickly shake out the duvets and plump up the pillows.

And so on it goes through out the day. Normally, limescale, washing baskets and unmade beds don't demand my immediate attention. It's amazing how much importance they take on when there is something less interesting that I really must be doing.

Monday, 10 March 2008

Fun Monday #12

This week's Fun Monday host is IT Guy and this is his assignment:

I need YOU (yes, the wonderful YOU!) to pick 5 memorable lines from 5 different movies (if you could tell us which character said it and to whom, would be a bonus)...and tell us to WHOM (who in the people in your life) you could have said those lines.

I don't watch that many movies, I simply don't have the patience to sit for two hours and stare at the screen. But, there are several movies I do enjoy and my quotes come from these films.

Men in Black 1997

Kay (to Jay): No, Elvis is not dead. He just went home.

This quote always makes me giggle. In his younger years, Himself did a mean Elvis impression but he had to be very, very drunk to do it and when he was, t was most definitely time for Elvis to go home!

Blade Runner 1982
"Home again home again jiggedy jig"

This is said to Deckard when he comes home by his robot (I think, my memory is a little hazy!) and we say it to each other every time we come home after being away for a weekend.

Independence Day 1996
Captain Steve Hiller (Will Smith): Oops.
David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum): What do you mean, oops?

Another one we say to each other! Despite my protestations that I'm not a great movie watcher, Himself is so quotes from films seem to play a regular part in our conversations! "Oops" is a word I use quite often and Himself usually remembers the response!

Little Shop of Horrors 1986
"Feed me Seymour, feed me now!

I don't think this is the exact quote but it's close enough! Another one that we use here when one of us is starving hungry!

Cool Hand Luke 1967
"What we have here is a failure to communicate"

Not sure who said this to whom in the film but it's one of Himself's favourite quotes and gets used a lot round here.....when should be fairly obvious!

Ummm....I'm not sure I've stuck strictly to the rules on this one but it's the best I can do! Head on over to IT Guy's blog to visit the other participants!

Sunday, 9 March 2008


I took myself off shopping yesterday morning. I hate shopping but this shopping was fun! So, what did I buy? This is what I bought

A sack of Layer's pellets
A bag of poultry grit
A feed trough
A poultry drinker

Himself has finished building my chicken run and the coop has been cleaned.

Now, what am I missing? Oh yes. The chickens.

I have contacted the Battery Hen Welfare Trust and have offered a home to three or four ex-battery hens. I've yet to hear back from them but March is a busy month for them so I'm just keeping fingers crossed that I hear back from them soon and they deem me suitable.

Now I'm off to do more shopping as it's time to plant up my tomato and bean seeds and I need seed trays and compost. Not being a very green-fingered person, self-sufficiency is a long way away but tomatoes and beans are a start.

Saturday, 8 March 2008


I froze my butt off out in the garden this afternoon to get these beauties. I am so impressed with my 70-300 lens!

Friday, 7 March 2008

What are we coming to?

London Underground are, apparently, starting a new campaign to encourage tube passengers to give up their seats to pregnant women. A priority seat sign will be installed on tube trains. Why? Because research has shown that up to a third of pregnant women are never offered a seat on a train and many others have to wait at least five stops before someone offers them a seat.

I really don't want to turn this into an "in my day" sort of post because I'm really not that old. But it looks like I'm going to anyway. I was taught manners, to respect the elderly and infirm, and to offer a seat to a pregnant woman.

Have we really sunk so low that Transport for London have to launch a campaign and prioritise seats for those that need them? Are we so self-absorbed that our own comfort in sitting and reading a newspaper on a train is more important than giving up a seat for those more in need of them? Obviously we have and we are.

I despair of the human race sometimes and I do worry for our future. That is just one example of how we are falling to pieces. The youth of today has no respect. No respect for authority, teachers, their parents. If they want it they have to have it and don't care how they get it, even if it means stealing for it. They moan they don't have things but won't get a job and earn the money to buy the things they want. They think they have a "right" to be respected as their due but they're not prepared to earn that respect and if they don't get it, you're just as likely to get a knife in your back.

We have an epidemic of binge drinking in teenagers. We have teenage drug gangs. Gun crime figures in London last year increased by 4% - 27 teenagers were murdered in London alone last year. 7 teenagers have been murdered in London already this year.

We see it here where I work too. We have a gang of teenagers who come out of an evening and sit on one particular bench to smoke cigarettes and dope, and to get get drunk on alcopops. These are not youngsters with nothing better to do with themselves, they are from wealthy local families and are well-educated. But they have had everything handed to them on a plate, they don't know what it is to go without or to work for what they want so they are easily bored and turn to drugs and alcohol for their kicks instead. Then they think it hysterically funny to smash all the bottles and leave broken glass everywhere, in an area where there are both children playing and dogs being walked.

I realise that I am generalising here and there are a lot of kids out there that don't go off the rails. It's always the bad news that hits the press and that no doubt is colouring my views but, nonetheless, humanity is still falling to pieces.

Thursday, 6 March 2008

Oops. There goes another.

Snowy, my latest Greyhound foster, went off to his new home last night.

Virginia landed from a skiing holiday at 4pm and was with me by 7.30pm to pick him up. She was a little keen to have him home! She arrived laden with new goodies for him and he had lots more waiting for him at home.

Ungrateful little beggar, he jumped straight into Virginia's car wagging his tail and didn't look back once apart from to say "bye then. And you know, I wouldn't have had it any other way.

Be happy little man. Another hound we will miss having around.

Wednesday, 5 March 2008

I have cookies!

I often have cookies but today I have cookies all the way from America!

Last week, Alison over at RDHmom had a blogging giveaway. Alison was giving away Girl Scout Cookies. We don't have things like that over here in the UK. I mean, we have Girl Scouts, or Girl Guides rather, and we have biscuits of course. But cookies? Pale imitations is all we have.

Having mentioned that one of the Girl Scouts Cookies she had were Samoas, a concoction of sugar cookie, coconut, caramel, and chocolate, I started to drool. All my favourite sweet-tooth-satisfying ingredients in one. What is a girl supposed to do? What a girl does is beg a box in return for a book that she had sent to the Girl Scout Cookie lady!

And today my box of Girl Scout Samoa cookies arrived! With great ceremony, I made a mug of tea for a colleague and myself and we opened the box of cookies. Then we got stuck in. And we both sat there saying "oh yeah, oh yeah".

Good cookies!

Thank you Alison!

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

A Sneak Preview!

It's Himself's birthday coming up in a few weeks and I've been racking my brains as to what to buy him. I've mentioned before that he is the worst person to buy presents for. They're always a "waste of money" or "it's nice of you but I won't ever use it". But this time I think I've cracked it.

Greyhound Gap is lucky enough to have a lot of supporters who are very clever with their hands and make some wonderful things. They advertise their wares on Gap and make a 20% donation of any sales they that are made through Gap. One such clever person makes walking sticks and paints dogs' heads on the handles. Himself doesn't need a walking stick of course but he does collect them. So I commissioned one. And this is it....

I am chuffed to bits with it and, hopefully, so will Himself be!

Monday, 3 March 2008

Fun Monday #11

This week's host is Janet on her very own Planet. And her assignment this week is this:

Hollywood has come calling. They want to make a movie of your life story!

So here's what I want to read about: Write the brief synopsis of this film that you might use to pitch this project and cast the principal players. Who would play you? You can either cast or ignore significant others, children and/or pets. This is, after all, YOUR movie about you you YOU! Illustrate as needed with casting photos or filming locations. Your life not interesting enough? Hey, this is Hollywood. Never let the facts get in the way of a good story!

Young girl is a rope in a tug-of-war match between her mother and her father. The wicked step-mother makes her clean and clean and isn't allowed out for any fun until the cleaning is done.

She finally escapes the drudgery into a life that flits from one role to another because she doesn't know how to settle in one place. She finally gets to go to the ball where she meets her Prince Charming who sweeps her off her feet to live a life of bliss.

Then it all turns to pumpkins. And she lives to become old, wearing purple and a red hat and satin sandals, with her dogs for company.

Fairytale? Oh yeah, you bet!

Sunday, 2 March 2008

Silent Sunday

Saturday, 1 March 2008

Happy St David's Day!

St David is the patron saint of Wales and today is the day that Welsh people around the world celebrate, well, they celebrate being Welsh!

The heraldic emblem of Wales is Y Ddraig Goch, the Red Dragon, and this morning I hijacked my neighbour's flag pole and raised my Welsh flag in celebration.

Wales has two traditional emblems aside from the flag. Men traditionally wear a leek on St David's Day. An odd choice perhaps, wearing an onion on your lapel, but, according to legend, St David ordered his soldiers to wear the leek on their helmets to distinguish them from their opponents in battle against the Saxon invadors.

Women more tradionally wear a daffodil on their lapel.
Possibly the reason why the daffodil is used as an emblem is that the word for daffodil and for leek are the same in Welsh (Cenhinen = Leek, Cenhinen Pedr = Daffodil).

(Taken in my garden this morning!)

It is said by some that the daffodil is encouraged more by the English government, as it does not have the nationalistic overtones that the leek has, with its association with the defeat of Saxons.

When I was a child, we always dressed in the national Welsh costume to go to school on St David's Day. The typical Welsh costume consists of a hat, made of black felt, with a high crown and wide brim, which is worn over a lace cap. A red flannel shawl is worn over a crisp white blouse, and a full skirt made of wool with a black and white check pattern and a starched, white apron.

So, whether you are Welsh, or have Welsh ancestry,
Dydd Gwyl Dewi hapus!