Monday, June 30, 2008

I Think They've Got It Now!

Well, well... I actually picked a winner! The team I chose to follow in the absence of Hingerland only went and won the Euro 2008 Championship!!

And what a joy it was to support a team that can PLAY; a team that can PASS; a team that doesn't look as if they only met each other a few hours before the game...

Hmm, it's going to be hard to go back from enjoying Spain to suffering the pain of a Hingerland campaign.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Pale Blue Dot - Carl Sagan

I really love this clip. It is great to have something that is inspiring to most people regardless of religion or ideology.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

3 Years Today

It is three years since my mother died.

Feels more like 300.

Death is terribly final, isn't it?
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Friday, June 13, 2008

Happy Birthday Dear Teabag

The teabag is 100 today - I wonder if it was also a Friday!

Anyhow, it was all a mistake,

"...Thomas Sullivan, a New York coffee merchant who turned to tea, sent out samples in small silk sachets rather than as loose tea. His penny-pinching was misunderstood by his customers who failed to realise that they were supposed to cut open the sachet and empty its contents into a pot before brewing their tea. The result was an instant success with American tea drinkers." Say no more...


Reading the article reminded me of what my dad always said about teabags, "they just fill them with the leftover dust in the crates! Grrr..."

But I also recall clogged plug-holes, jammed with tea-leaves... and that horrible moment when you are draining your cup and you get a mouthful of them... bleeeuuuuugh! That is the reason that I still leave a drop in any cup of anything I am drinking.

(Cup... not glass)

I have kind of got used to teabags now, but I do miss tea caddies, those funny little spoons for the tea, teapot cosies and the sound of the boiling water pouring onto the leaves in the pot...

Time for a cuppa!

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Hinger-land, Hinger-land, Hinger- oh!

So, ladies and gentlemen, the European Footy Thingy starts today and as has been pointed out to me gleefully - nay, gloatingly - by numerous inhabitants of deepest Bavaria, Hinger-land is not taking part.

I have to admit this has left me free to approach this Championship with a relaxed feeling of calm which is wonderful. No frustrated screams of anguish at the TV when the Young English Millionaires show that they still do not understand that the basic principle of passing includes the fact that the ball should go to one of their own team-mates.

I realised that watching England play in one of these competitions is like driving an underpowered car up a steep hill... you clasp the steering wheel tightly and push with all your strength to try and help the struggling, spluttering vehicle make it. After watching England 'play' I would find myself totally knackered from the exertions of attempting to inject some vigour and inventiveness into their tactics from my living room.

Anyhow, for this tournament I have adopted Spain as my team. It should have been Greece but I just can't accept the horrible way they played in the last championships - somehow Otto Rehhagel time-machined the Greeks back to the dour scientific football of the 1970s. It used to be fun watching the Greeks play football and he drilled that out of them - making the team something like football's version of 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest'.

So, Spain... yeah. I watched them play Peru last week and experienced something I had never felt before watching 'my' team play international football - these lads can play! They really can play!! Good football - good moves - skilful runs down the wing - clever defence-splitting passes - erm, WOW!

So, we are stocking up on papas fritas and cerveza and practising the new chant:
Hespan-yar, Hespan-yar, Hespan-yar...

Friday, June 06, 2008

I Got This Email This Morning...


Πέρυσι τέτοιον καιρό διαφήμιζα έναν μαγικό χώρο στην ορεινή Ηλεία, έναν χώρο για σεμινάρια και εναλλακτικές διακοπές. Ύστερα από τις φωτιές του Αυγούστου 2007, αυτός ο χώρος και το πανέμορφο δάσος που τον περιτριγύριζε μεταμορφώθηκαν σε μια αναπαράσταση της Χιροσίμα.

Η καταστροφή του περιβάλλοντος είναι ολοκληρωτική κι έτσι αποφάσισα να σας προσκαλέσω κατά τη διάρκεια των διακοπών του καλοκαιριού, αν θέλετε, να έρθετε να μας βοηθήσετε να στηρίξουμε το δάσος, έναν ελαιώνα και ένα μικρό αμπέλι στην αναζωογόνησή τους.


Well, let me show off my Greek.. cos, if you've got it, you've got to flaunt it!

This is from some friends of a friend in Thessaloniki and it's about a 'magical little village' in the Peloponnese and the beautiful forest around it which was all burned to a cinder in the fires last year. The mail is an appeal for volunteers to go there in the summer and help to replant the forest - a few olive trees here and some vines there.

What a great idea, camping up on the hills above Olympia and doing some honest work in the fresh air... with the prospect of wonderful sandy beaches down on the coast in the evening...

Hmmm... worth a ponder...

Monday, June 02, 2008

Summer Bloody Holiday

I have been singing, humming, whistling, Summer-bloody-Holiday non-stop since Saturday! It is driving me seriously round the bend.

My apologies if this has affected any of you in the same way...'re all going on a - a summer more workin' for a - weekortwo.....

...argghhh! SHUT UP!!