I am not sure if this post is a testimony to my exquisite observational powers or my descent into madness....but you see, I have been in Belgium since September and have yet to see an insect other than one dead Ladybird,which was caught up in some plans so may well have been imported from blighty.My flat comes with baguette bits all over the kitchen and should be a breeding ground for the blighters.But not even a money spider...no run-ins with Daddy-Long-Legs in season,no scary beasties with legs like Lisa Snowden,not even a Moth never mind a Cockroach.No ants or their flying cousins.What the hell is going on here.I know it's now winter but that's no excuse in blighty.Are all Belgians closet insects....are they insects in disguise....there are some very pretty one's if they are! I am determined to get to the bottom of this...All this and I have yet to sample any of the 200 varietals of Absinthe in the Fleur bar in Brussels.I will keep you posted!
Lord Roby chose to go native today.First up a 'Tarte da Djote' pronounced Jot.It is the local speciality for Nivellians(who are actually known as Aclots(Nails in English).This tart is made with fermented cheese and beet leaves and very fermented cheese.Under the bed fermentation is not unknown.I had my reservations.After 2 mouthfulls I had regrets.It was very very pungent and very sickly.I managed to eat half of a 9" tart with the help of some ketchup and Perrier.Never again!..The reason natives of Nivelles are called Nails goes back to medieval times when the city portal was under siege and the word went out to get more nails to batten down the hatches.After this it was off to the Christmas market.An impressive affair which involved marquees and a section with in the Cathedral trancepts.After a few free tastings Lord Roby could not resist a bottle or two of wine and a stick of pepperoni.All in all a very satisfying day so far.After the tastings Lord Roby is still a bit tiddly,so is it wine and TV or wine and Irish Bar?...I'll let you know later,
A few nights ago Lord Roby called into the 'local' for a demi litre of his favourite Belgian draght beer 'Maes'...After a few it was about 10pm and time for bed.The 6am alarm clock was already ringing in my ears.As I was finishing the dregs a local guy turned up with his guitar.Within 15 mins the place was bouncing.If the locals weren't singin along they where clapping or smiling.Lord Roby assumed the position and chose to play the bar congas. I was going nowhere.The party went on and on.The only songs I knew apart from a couple of Elvis ones were Tainted Love(sang very nasally) and a great rendition of Rock a Billy Boogie which apart from being a fave of mine is also a song I have never heard on the radio or in a club...in fact nowhere apart from my own record/cd player.A great time was had by ALL.The bar owner could not wipe the smile from his face.Well it was all free entertainment.Yet again Belgium has come up trumps.Good clean fun in a bar in a late 60's early 70's style.Lord Roby left about midnight fearing the dreaded alarm clock a few hours later but glowing with the simple pleasure a good old fashioned knees-up brings.
It has come to my attention that there is a lot of fuss over here.... and there, about Beaujolais Nouveau.So Lord Roby has decided to become a trendy wendy for a night and review this years crop for you.As Ali G once said.'If there's grass on the pitch ...Lets play'.....The nose....fruity.....The taste young...The nose .....fruity.....The taste even younger.....The nose...very young....The taste....very very fruity...Slpp.Slpp.Slpp.... Petulant....You bet......Hell this reminds me of the night I lost my virginity,except I can't remember how long ago that was and I'm sure it cost me more than 2.69 Euros...Dr Sir Les Patterson you would love it.With me?
Shortly after Everton beat Spurs on Sunday Lord Roby came upon The Grand Place and was stopped dead in his tracks by the annual son et lumiere display that is Brussels at Christmas.I was unable to take my eyes or attention off it for a second. Surely this is what displays and celebrations of Christmas should be like, not the shitty steel coathanger crumby chrimbo tree that is Church Street, Liverpool.At the time Lord Roby was gagging for a beer.What a dilemma.The solution....A 5.50 euro beer in the bar opposite.Very much pole position I might add.Next week I will be taking a 5.50 euro six pack!!...Do youselves a favour and check out the display in all its glory on YouTube if you dont plan to go there yourself.
Last Sunday proved rather trying for Lord Roby and his new found friends.After landing at Schipol,Amsterdam ; the Dutch rail network went bismark.My first inkling was that I did not recognise the stations on the itinerery from my usual ones.I started to convince myself Bossum was dutch for Brussels.Big mistake.I was non-plussed enough to ask a nice young man if I was on the right train.I was, but he told me we had to change two stops down the line, to catch the international train.Nobody had warned of this.I decided to stick close to the man with the plan.Two stops down the line everything went pear shaped.Stuck in a remote station in the snow and all mainline trains cancelled due to a crash!! After half an hour looking at the increasing worried passengers around me I decided to ask the man with the plan to scout for a guard.No luck,all we found was a computer terminal.Ditto...no more trains for us.Our only chance was to wait for a minor train and nail the guard.Bingo.He told us we had to get 3 more trains to Rotterdam! Once there we would be OK provided we were not too late! Every train was jammed Tokyo stylee,but me and my new found friends(a scouser!...a dutch junior doctor and two chinese girls who thought it was all great fun) were lookin out for each other.Holdin open train doors and finding room where there was none.By the time we hit Rotterdam in good time, it was jars out over a few beers to Brussels.Unfortunately the two chinese girls missed the boat at the eleventh hour.We went looking for them but a last minute platform change sealed their giggly fate. What did I get out of it?.That companionship in adversity thing and at least two new friends.One I will probably meet again, Doctor Marcus who saved our collective bacon, I probably won't....But a strangely pleasant experience nontheless....
Lord Roby has spent quite a lot of his free time recently in Belgian Bars.There are many similarities to English Bars of old.The bars in Belgium are very inclusive and welcoming of all ages.Thats not to say those in England aren't.But the emphasis is totally different.The bars over here are for meeting people you either know or don't.Many Belgians meet in bars to play board games over a few drinks.In England it seems to be the emphasis is on getting drunk.You know drink,get drunk,dring some more,get blind drunk.Drink some more.In Belgium the beer is much stronger...consequently they tend to savour it..drinking beer more slowly.There is also a complete absence of malice regardless of how much alcohol has been consumed.So far I have not seen a single incident of aggression or otherwise.Just happy smiley people.The only problem is every one of them to a man or woman smokes like a chimney.I vaguely remember skittles being played in an English pub and had great fun playing Bar Billiards in a bar in Manchester in the 80's.Alas it is now more a case of pool or quiz machines.Pool causes fights and quiz machines just pass the time while relieving you of large amounts of money.Never trust an electronic game as the processor is holding all the cards.I'm off out now for some more Wallonic irrigation and fussball !!!!
When it comes to picking your best all time 11 for your favourite football team,disputes invariably break out.But when to comes to Everton left-backs the answer is always the same.Ray Wilson.His real name is Ramon.Unusual name for a boy from Huddersfield,WestYorkshire.He represented England on many occasions and notably in the World Cup Final of 1966.He is one of the guys along with Geoff Hurst holding Bobby Moore aloft in the famous picture that has since been converted to a sculpture in Bobby Moores honour.I suppose the untimate honour for Ramon would have been to embalm Bobby after his untimely death from cancer.You see, when Ray retired from football he returned to his first love,undertaking! His business thrives in Huddersfield to this day.As for Huddersfield;Lord Roby had the misfortune to work there for many years.A more miserable monochrome place you will not to encounter.Grey people, living in a grey place devoid of any humour.Perfect surroundings for an exquisite undertaker.I guess it takes all sorts!
On a day when a black man finally ruled the world and we all rejoiced;I thought I'd enlighten all four of you with a lesson in black Belgian folklore.Belgian kids are brought up to believe Santa is from Spain and is assisted in his chores by big ugly blacked-up, white guys called Pete.Zwarte Pete(Black Pete) is used to get the kids to behave.If kids end up on Petes naughty list, he will beat the shit out of them on Santas behalf! If they are worse than naughty, they risk being bundled into a sack and taken to Spain to make toys for the good kids!! Is it any wonder the poor tykes end up growing up, terrified of anyone with a black face.To look at the guy even I wouldn't say 'Zwarte Pete' three times in front of a mirror.So don't worry land of the free;when it comes to scary black guys.....Belgium got there first.
As Chaz Az once warbled.....Lord Roby was viciously assaulted twice in the space of 20 minues in downtown Wallonia a few evenings ago.Shortly after entering a local hostelry by the name of "The Pilgrim" (no less).Lord Roby, after explaining that he had prior knowledge of a house of the same name in the backwaters of Liverpool,was assaulted with a potion of strange looking liquor.Amber in colour and barely above freezing point.He was obliged to swallow this liquid known locally as the "Duvels Brew" by a man known only as "Le Proprietor".Once this ordeal was "over" a copycat event occured.Two local studettes, reading scriptures from a strange looking tome,approached the by now light headed Lord Roby and demanded he chant verses in tongues(his native tongue); from this ghastly bible.Lord Roby duly obliged.Yet again, immediately after succumbing to this ordeal, a further yard of this potion was proferred.Not more icey yellow filth to imbibe.Was this ever going to end.Whats more, the Duvels Daughters where getting rather too close for comfort.The thought of Lady Roby analysing my cojones for earring piercings was enough to make one exit stage left; feeling very mellow and slightly bemused by this unsolicited attention.Vive Le Baps!!
Things in Wallonia ain't all beer and chocolates.The locals do have some strange ways.One of which is eating cakes with a knife and fork!....The dirty bastards.Another is the fact that they would quite willingly eat Red Rum or Mr Ed!....The dirty bastards.A third is a 'dish' called American.The only thing that sets this food apart from dog food is that at least dog food has some taste.It also has no smell.Oh! and it's also served cold...The dirty bastards.But the one thing that I will never understand is their predeliction for inspecting their own shite every morning.The WC's are designed to facilitate this by having a dainty little Royal Doulton ledge upon which to catch their morning constitutional.Inspection is obligatory....The dirty bastards.In fact I am contemplating a blog bubble to participate in this sport.No narrative,just a picture of the days offerings with a caption along the lines of ..'Kop for this one,I nearly choked on this little beauty;the extractor just couldn't cope.'The blog title "Mi Merda Tu Merda"
One of the things about living and working in Wallonia is the importance they make of meeting and greeting.A handshake is obligatory.Kisses are just for the born and bred.If I am attending a meeting the first five minutes are spent walking around the table shaking hands with everybody.The thing is, it is something I have always been big on.It really does engender commaraderie.The kisses are very disconcerting.I'm sure if my lingo improves then one of the locals might just try it on.Even though it might be flattering a "Kirkby Kiss" will be the most likely retort!
Well done Lord Roby.On the back of desperately high blood pressure and the onset of dibetes; and a less than impressive recent career history,I got the job.Now firmly ensconced in Wallonia and mightily impressed by the place too! I'm sure the place has it's problems,but a problem here is a solution back in Two Dogs. I could go on about the place for hours,but the overriding pleasure is the unfettered existence I now ENJOY.Its such a simple pleasure but one which I had forgotten existed.Liberty Egality Fraternity is the glue of this society,defended to the hilt by it's participants.No cameras,no parking restrictions,no speed 'control' measures.In fact I have only encountered ONE traffic light in over two weeks.Needless to say it got me.I have also been afforded a nice apartment just a stones-throw from the Grand Place.As if this wasn't enough the owners have installed a velux window in my living room, which enables me to admire the efforts of the local ballerinas, in the dance school opposite while quaffing a glass of claret.Boy do they work up a sweat!!!.....Vive La Difference!
20/20 vision did nothing to make up for the disappointment of 220/110 BP reading. Yes 220/110!!And I couldn't have been more chilled.Is it just my metabolism or could be my inactivity, coupled with rapid weight gain?(not to be confused with rapid weight loss,which is usually fatal).The banana I ate an hour before my medical made no bastard difference whatsoever. Potassium my arse!! I guess medication beckons: if I want to live to be gored by a Maura Bull in Pamplona on my 50th birthday.I don't know about bananas I'll need a rocket up my jacksie on July 11th 2009 at 8.01am. I guess my new career is all down to my blood test results on Wednesday.I wonder if I tell him it's a DSS 'Get your arse offa Incapacity Benefit' medical he'll sign me off 'fit for work'.You know what I think it just might work.Come on you Lipids!! The doctor is a Nigerian chappie...if all else fails he might be partial to a bung!!
It would appear from all recent indicators that Lord Roby may soon be on a soujourn to Wallonia.I've been asked to declare my overall size and shoe size and have also been asked to attend a medical.Does this mean I can actually go back to work? Well in Belgium,a founder member of the EU the answer is no!! I need a work permit.They don't call them work permits,they call them Limosa's(sound like a top cocktail to me).But since I have to forward my details including my passport number,then present myself in person at Wallonia Town Hall, with a copy of my birth certificate,marriage licence and contract of employment for inspection, prior to being allowed to start work;this seems like a work permit to me.Maybe Gordo and his boys at the Home Office in downtown Liverpool could learn a thing or two from our fellow EU members about quelling immigration.Let's face it, if one of our own has to jump through so many hoops then moose-heads should have no chance. Another feature of the whole employment process is the need to have a medical.To this end Lord Roby has been de-toxing for the last few days.No mean feat I tell you.First to go was the coffee.This was the toughest.Plenty of weird tingles and aches.Then it was the alcohol.After the coffee this was plain sailing.The only disappointment was waking up on Sunday morning knowing that it was the best I was going to feel all day!!The medical is at 2:30 on Monday.I should be well into the 'crack' pipe by sundown.
Yesterday, I had the misfortune to learn of Linda Buchanan.Linda,58 was waiting for a train at Farningham Road station, when she asked a fellow 'traveller' if he would refrain from smoking.Shortly after she found herself with multiple bruises and a fractured wrist,while laying perilously close to the electrified rail;with the 7:57 fast approaching!! Ionel Rapisca,from Kent,and an immigrant of East European extraction has been charged with GBH(that all!!). Lord Roby has had the misfortune to come across these types,on the odd occasion.You need not ask their origin; they all have unfeasibly large heads not unlike that of an encephalytic moose.If one of them ever asks me for a light I will be getting out of Two Dogs sharply. Seriously though,lets just put this down in the category of 'Things an Englishman Would Never Do'. Rapisca..('ca' is pronounced 't' in Albanian by the way), is due up before the beak on 5th November.At least they got something right!Hands up those who would like to throw this moose-head on top of the nearest bommie come bonfire night.
It would appear from some rumblings of late that it is the Veggies who will inherit the Earth.Since the latest culprits, in the damnation of planet Earth due to gaseous overload, is us carnivores.This sounds like a stealth tax coupled with a nanny state hidden agenda behind it if ever there was one.I can definitely smell a 'Carnivore Tax' in the offing.If we all become veggies overnight, we will all be reducing our gaseous footprint,since all our food will now be served cold;the cow will cease to exist,methane will no longer poison planet Earth at an alarming rate and we will all be saved.Halle-effin-luah!We will also no longer die of red-meat cancer or calcium calcification of the arteries.(We never did learn how to digest that milk stuff anyway!!) Alternatively, we can ignore the rhetoric,buy a cow each,have a plentiful supply of milk and sirloin steak,dispense with the lawnmower and give Putins gas the fingers;because we can all keep warm with the strike of a match anywhere within six feet of the nearest cows arse!!!
David France grew up in Widnes,Cheshire in a two up-two down terraced house that had one cold water tap,one electric light and one nail; to hold up the tin bath on the outhouse wall! He was a slow learner and in fact did not learn to read until the age of 14.However, once he got to grips with himself academically there was no stopping him.He eventually gained a few university degrees followed by a PhD in Chemical Engineering,specialising in hydrogen combustion.His work came to the attention of NASA who made sure of engaging his services by asking Senator Edward Kennedy no less to sponsor his Green Card.It would appear that all the money he made during his time as a rocket scientist was destined for only one purpose.Buying up almost the entire history of Everton Football Club.The collection is now in the hands of a trust to ensure it is never broken up.Some of the items are now on display in the Picton Library in Liverpool ,where I came across it, by chance while looking at JJ Audobons 'Birds of America'; another priceless artefact.Just how much time and effort David put in locating programmes from the 1880's only he knows.I suppose the fact the Everton FC invented programmes, as well as championship medals may have helped a little.But just where do you find a season ticket from 1881-1882 season, which even pre-dates the formation of the Football League is beyond me.And who bothered to keep it in the first place for posterity.David France I take my mortar board off to you;a Top Toffee and a gentleman who took the trouble to throw a party for my friends while they where in Houston,Texas for a pre-season friendly not so long ago.
It is now some 6 weeks since Lord Roby joined the rank and file of the proletariat by succumbing to the temptations of mass unemployment.It's been a very frustrating ride so far.If it were a roller coaster,it would be called CRAVASSE PARK; because it's the only ride I have ever been on that has no ups... only downs! A bizarre soul destroying game of Snakes and Snakes and even more Snakes.The1st down was being told I did not qualify for Job-Seekers Allowance because Baroness Roby earns £99.99 per week helping out part-time at the local medical centre.Apparently, this is above the Department of Work survival threshold for a family of three or more! I doubt Winston Smith could have survived on this back in 1984. Alright then hows about Income Support? Cracked it;this one ain't means tested.Sorry 2nd Down;this one is only available to the single parent families and the "sick".The third down was being offered a lifeline of possible help with my mortgage payments.3rd down....this help is only available to proles on Job Seekers or Income Support!! Next up, how about Council Tax benefit.Surely they can't expect you to pay £120 per month out of four times £99.99.Don't bank on it.The department responsible for this has so far taken over 4 months to assess my claim.So far, they have told me the Robys don't qualify because we have an income of over £500 per week and accused Lady Roby of fraud for claiming benefits while working part-time!! The irony of it.4th Down.This is now..."on appeal".But we ain't holding our breath. For someone who has worked and never claimed unemployment benefits, since leaving school in 1975, this is really hard to swallow.Where is the safety net?..Just why have I been paying my contributions all these years? I just can't wait to get a job....claiming benefits is just too much like hard work.
Yesterday was GCSE results day in Quaff Castle,and a good one it was too! Lady Amy exceeded her expectations, so it was off to the local 6th Form college for enrolment day.Upon arrival it was apparent that this was not going to be a walk in the park.Throngs of Two Dogs finest had descended upon the establishment.Strangely about 80% of the arrivals were scholettes! Undercroft a plenty!This bore all the hallmarks of a potential ordeal for Lord Roby.So I exited left for a bacon sarnie and left Baroness Roby and Lady Amy to their own devices.Upon my return some 30 minutes later my family were nowhere to be found.There was nothing Lord Roby could do but stand in the reception area and wait.You don't realise how hard it is to spend 90minutes looking nonchalant in the face of severe temptation.Lord Roby lost count of the number of times he reassured the security guards of his noble intentions.Me the 14th Earl of Roby engaging teenage nyphettes surely not!! Let just say if the day was a bottle of wine it would have to be a Semillon!!
The Olympics always draws me in to the most unusual places.Fortunately a lot of the live stuff is late morning when there's nothing much going on anyway. So I end up being enthralled by Canoeing,Archery and Badminton etc.Sports I wouldn't normally take a blind bit of notice of.Some Olympic "sports" such as football and tennis which I would normally watch, I couldn't give a rats-ass about because they don't deserve to be there. Boxing though has always been a must.In Davie Price,Boxing and Liverpool has a star in the making.A true salt of the earth working class hero.When he beat the No 1 contender Islam Timurziev,he ran around the ring shouting............................ 'Bastard,Bastarrd,Bastarrrd'. His post fight media event was even better."No one does that to him,arl granite jaw,I caught him wid me Sunday punch".And so he did,knocked im into the middler next week! Davie won again today.He is now guaranteed a medal.Let's hope it's a good one, without any tears.
Lord Roby has been on a sabbatical.A torrid one at that.The sabbatical has involved spending all day every day of the past 8 days trying to obtain gainful employment.It really is a full time job trying to get one.First off you have to try and determine which are the blag internet jobs and which are real.Tip.Those that appear in papers and journals are always real.They've been paid for.The rest are all likely to be blag! On Tuesday,Lord Roby actually got an offer for a job on Ireland."We'd like to offer you the post,we just need to agree a rate.We'll be back to you in a few hours." Miriam Sharkey said.Two days later,no reply.On Thursday I rang them.They rang back an hour later to say that the client would not accept my CV!!!Stroll on! Is this code? Should the client have been shown my CV before them making me an offer? Is it just the way they operate in Ireland? Nevertheless you just have to keep your pecker up and plough on.However,when you can't cover your bills and the wolves have their tongues through your letter box things start to get scary.I'm now applying for jobs in Milan and Japan! Am I suffering from no-job neurosis? Yosser Hughes would be proud of me.I'm even thinking of applying for a job as a meter-reader.Could Lord Roby become the first minimum wage proffessional? Anyone out there know the current cost of a gross of Paracetomol? Being self employed is a breeze compared to dealing with all the tossers in the employment game,maybe I should stop bitching and go back to it.
Thankfully now that Destination Kirkby has been called in by the Government it appears that Everton may now be staying put at Goodison Park if not forever but for another two years or so at least.Personally I cannot imagine Everton playing anywhere but Goodison Park and it was beyond my comprehension to go anywhere near a dump like Kirkby to watch them regardless.However,Liverpool City Councils behaviour with regard to the Goodison Park situation has been a disgrace from Day 1.Our original enquiry to occupy a sliver of Stanley Park to alleviate parking problems was widely condemned due to the fact that Stanley Park was a listed site and as such any encroachment was quite simply a complete non-starter.Move on a year or two and our bastard child puts in an application to build a new ground on said listed park.They don't want a sliver;they want half the precious park.Guess what?They get it.At this point even 'Private Eye' started to sit up and take notice and accused the City Council,the majority of whom were Dark-Side season ticket holders,of being a tad partisan. Move on a few years and Everton have the chance of a new state of the art facility in an outlying suburb at an affordable cost.What do the City Council do but object on the grounds that business will be lost.The City Council then agree to endorse a modified i.e. smaller ground and scheme.However, once the scheme is approved by local planners,the city council then renege on their earlier promise not to object and ask for the proposal to be called in!!! I guess it's all in a days work for a politician.I guess the writing was on the wall when Everton were denied planning permission to build a new exclusive housing estate on prime land owned by the club in West Derby;by guess who? You've guessed it.Liverpool City Council.Funny how the Capital of Culture 08 logo was also in the colours of our beloved neighbour.The same colours as the rags of shirts we left behind, when we vacated Analfield all those years ago.
Now I do like a good conspiracy theory, 9/11,the Titanic,Walking on the Moon bring them on.One of the ones I like best though, is the one involving Jeffry Archer and Jill Dando.It would appear that Ms Dando used to live not far from Angela Peppiatt and bore a remarkable resemblance to her and even driving the same BMW.But what did Jill Dando ever do to Lord Jeffrey Archer.Nothing.Sweet FA.What then did Angela do to Lord Archer; apart from being instrumental in getting Jeffrey sent down for perjury, by producing a 'missing' diary; probably nothing any other PA wouldn't do for him.And didn't Monica Coghlan also die in mysteriously tragic circumstances after pointing the finger at Jeffrey in court.Mmmm.I wonder.And what a classic line from Barry Bulsara."It couldn't have been me,I was stalking someone else at the time!" Or is he just The Great Pretender.I guess we will never know.
This forum was not created to extol the virtues of the Dark Side,our bastard child from over the park,but I am getting increasingly concerned for their welfare.Are they all suffering from Rafa Benittis,Repetitive Never Again Injury,Delusions of Grandeur.The spend is now up to at least £300 million and they are no nearer winning the league than 20 years ago.The latest poaching is Keane at somewhere near £40million all-in (including the pay off to appease the injured party).Let's face it,Tottenham were the last club who were going to refuse more money to keep quiet! And Barry; a 'steal' at £20 million without the salary and pay off!These would appear to be the actions of a desperado.If I was Stevie Gee Laaa, I would looking for a new club to poach me,come the January transfer window."Easyjet for Rafa." The definition of madness is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome.Well there's always next season.Also to all the armchair fans out there; the players aren't really 4 inches tall!!!
It would appear from todays news bulletins that we are about to create a new crime.The heinous offence of 'premeditated manslaughter'.The accent in this case is definitely on the man bit.Lets say there's a bit of trouble and strife in the relationship,throw in a bit of PMT for good measure,decide that this is a good time to off your old man and hey Bob's yer uncle.The missus can now claim provocation and end up receiving compo for all her trauma.Is there an offence of 'premeditated womanslaughter'? I think not.You see the generally held view is that only men commit domestic violence.Bollocks! Misogyny is definitely a man thing.It must be, as it has no feminine counterpart.The nearest etymologically you will get to it is Misandry,but it aint in my Oxford English Dictionary and I doubt very few have ever encountered the word.Why would they because women don't ever hate men.Why would they?
It would appear from an article I read today that all is not well in the scientific community over climate change and the way the temperature data is collected and evaluated.The data most widely cited as being representative is that supplied by James Hansen of Nasa's Goddard Institute for Space Studies.Hansen is an ally of Al Gore, the Nobel prize 'winner'.However,other equally emminent organisations are now challenging the validity of GISS' data.Namely,that they are the only ones to rely on surface based data as well as satellite readings.Strangely some of the surface based sensors would appear to be in rather dubious locations i.e. asphalt car parks or local to air-conditioning outlets!...Now I wonder if this would skew the data?
Gorey Al has always appeared to champion this theory that although the planet has been cooling for the last 4.5 billion years it has suddenly started to heat up in the last 100 years since we began collecting data! A leading French scientist has called Gorey Al a 'crook' for presiding over an eco-business that pumps out cash.And what a tax gatherer it is.Accuse people of creating too much of something that can't be seen or measured and then proceed to tax them to death for doing it! A programme on Channel 4 recently challenging global warming was watched by 2.7 million people and received some 250 odd complaints.When it was judged by the broadcasting complaints commission it was accused of doing untold damage and setting back the global warming crusade years.Thankfully the commission found in Channel 4's favour and defended their right to make thought provoking documentaries.No doubt the commissioner will soon be found burnt at some eco-friendly stake and accused of suicide in a government scientist style. Lord Roby is now off to burn some stubble on his estate.Yippee!
Leonard Rossiter was born in the Edge Hill district of Liverpool.He always got off on coming from Edge Hill; and went on to become one of my favourite comedy actors. The fact that he was an Evertonian, who was on the clubs 'books' at one time also helped. He was captain of his school cricket and football teams and once scored all 11 goals for the school team in an 11-0 win! He was at his best in Rising Damp as the lecherous (Rupert) Rigsby and used to indulge his passion for Everton by dressing up the on-set skeleton in a blue and white scarf and bobble hat on occasion.However as a performer,he was a perfectionist and gave his co-actors a torrid time.So much so that one of his co-stars,Don Warrington, wanted to teach him a lesson and challenged him to a game of squash, with the intent of wiping the floor with the much older 'Rigsby'.Little did he know that our Leonard was also a very handy County squash player! It was Don who ended up in a heap at the back of the court with Leonard barely breaking sweat. An Evertonian until the day he died and a worthy inductee to the Two Dogs Toffees Hall of Fame.
I was caught behind a white van last night while travelling to my local Oddbins, for my regular Friday night bottle of claret.His bumper screamed at me 'WELL DRIVEN IF NOT RING THIS NUMBER' Of course it wasn't being well driven.But would anybody seriously bother their arse to ring up and have him sacked.As if it's not bad enough having a tracker fitted just in case you can't be picked up by a CCTV or traffic camera; your boss now wants to enlist the help of any other driver you might encounter to judge your performance.Are any other professions persecuted like this I wonder? Does your average whore have "WELL BATTERED" tattooed on her backside?Does your local gigolo have" WELL HUNG" on his lower abs? Is your pole-dancer obliged to be "WELL SLITHERED"? I guess not. You may not realise it, but all this layered persecution does take it's toll.It was only when I was in Venice for a Christmas weekend a few years back that I realised that something was amiss.I actually became aware that I wasn't being watched or directed at every possible juncture.It felt really liberating as it should.There where no traffic lights(obviously) and only three signs in the whole of Venice!St Marks Square and the Rialto Bridge being two of them and third I can't recall,probably because I never came across it! And yet nobody gets lost.Well not forever anyway....A miracle! Now Big Brown and co wan't to gather every e-mail and text and phonecall and, and, and....Why the fascination,they've never insisted on reading and storing every snail mail ever sent.Why?... as an old old friend of mine once said..."Because they can!" Arthur C Clark and the waller who invented the binary system have got a lot to answer for! I wonder what this gargantuan computer might be called.BIG BROWN maybe.From trilobites to kilobytes... did we really come all this way just to be spied upon?
I don't know why but I've always had a soft spot for The Tour De France.It's not rational since I find Formula 1 incredibly boring.So what is it about cycling around France in the glorious sunshine.Maybe it's because I also love driving around France in the glorious sunshine.Well today, amidst the annual drug furore that seems to overshadow the tour these days,Mark Cavendish (a Manxman with a scouse accent) became the first Englishman to win three stages in a tour ever! Drugs and cycling have always seemed to go hand in handlebar since the sixties.In fact Lord Roby was first introduced to 'substances' by an amateur cyclist f(r)iend.My pushers cycling collegues who were, either semi-pro or pro cyclists, all had jars full of the stuff! Another thing that attracts me to the Tour is the madness of it all and the levels of fitness required just to compete.I'd be hard pushed to drive the course in the same time. A particular tour hero is/was Tom Simpson,shown dying above.Tom literally rode himself to death on Mount Ventoux on a scorching hot 13th Stage on the 13th of July 1967.As well as drinking brandy 'en route' he also ingested some amphetamines for good measure. This coupled with a stomach bug and allied to the fact that the Tour organisers in those days only allowed 2 litres of water to combat dehydration, lead to Toms slow asphyxiation as he approached the summit.Not one to give up; his last words as the bike went sideways instead of forwards were 'Go on,go on!'
The flags were flying at half mast outside Quaff Castle today as,at the11th Hour of the 16th Day of July..... Lord Roby became the first in a generation to join the proletariet by 'signing on'.There was almost a reprieve at 8:30 that very morning when the phone rang.It was the outcome of a job interview, the day before in Winsford,Cheshire.The message..."You have all the skills required,and obviously now your stuff....but you where a little nervous during the interview, so I'm going to think about it!" Just what do you have to do to satisfy these people? This knock-back was up there with a previous one that accused me of lacking 'sparkle'.I wasn't even applying for a job as the purveyor of Tinkerbelles pixie-dust pouch ; just one with the water board! When this happens to me I start to get a tad paranoid.If there's no obvious reason for me not getting a job..What's the real reason? Being of scouse origin I am naturally thick skinned,because once we cross the city limits we are generally hated, mostly as a consequence of an over-zealous media.As Winston Churchill put it 'When one Englishman opens his mouth another one hates him' Or something to that effect. Winsford you see was populated by refugee ,slum clearance, scousers in the late 60's and early 70's.This didn't go down too well with the local populace and for all I know these tensions still exist today.The problem is how do you prove it? You can't exactly pull the race card, even though it may be no different to any other type of discrimination.Are my suspicions correct? Will my potential employer really think about it?Is he asking his boys if they mind working with a scouser? Who knows....But somehow I think the opportunity has gone and I'll probably never really get to know why.So it's on to the next interview.....No Surrender!
I heard the news today that footballer Ryan Giggs has received an honorary degree, for services to football and his charity work.A Masters degree no less. So it set me thinking.While I already have a degree, I have also been a loyal servant of Everton FC for almost 40 years now.Any recognition of this?...Do I get an honorary championship medal or even to toss the coin before the start of a game? Not a chance. And as for charity work I would guess that the average punter buying a 'Big Issue' or a lotto scratchcard gives a bigger proportion of their income to charity than your average 'charitable' footballer.Given that the average 'charitable' footballer only has a double digit IQ, I would suggest that it's the University who are being charitable.What next a PH.D for Rooney and a Consultants role at Alder Hey,for services to Auld Slapper!
Now I've travelled all over Western Europe and up and down the eastern seaboard of the US and wherever I've been I never see any girls to compare with the might of the scouse bird.Maybe it's genetic that I find local girls attractive ,you know propogation and all that.But then maybe it's just that they are head and shoulders above all other races.I am well qualified to judge....As Lady Roby once said to me "All you ever do is watch football and other women".Can't argue there then.Jennifer Ellison, shown above, as well as being a local lass is also a Toffee to boot.This has the added bonus that she would almost certainly get her kit ON in the bedroom.Now,this gentleman, doesn't normally prefer blondes ;but in this case I'm sure I could make an exception.Up the Toffees!
Well the real Lodge-Day has finally arrived when all my fellow WASPS will toddle off to Southport to party.As a WASP,like most proddies,we do not take our religion very seriously.In fact to me it has always been a bit of a made- up religion without much substance.Also being a scientist and practising aethiest I don't pay much ,if any ,attention to it whatsoever.Whilemanypeople nodoubtdo gainsomesolacefromtheir faith;I get none. We've been up there and thereis nothing.We've been down there and there is nothing(but morerocks and lava).At the end of the day we are all maggot shit! As UB40 once sang "there's no one living on a higher high...don't let the only world you're ever going to live in pass you by".On that note I'm off out to live it up!
As well as myself, my 16 daughter is also looking for some temporary work until she goes to college in September.To this end she applied for a temp job as a Cattery Assistant.90% of the job no doubt involves identifying and shovelling cat shit. The proprietor of the local cattery,a miserable jock,(are they all dour) promised to ring her back tonight.The gobshite didn't have the courage or the courtesy to do so.She is now distraught.Obviously she will have to learn to live with rejection.As my old dad used to say..."Life is like a shit sandwich...the more bread you have,the less shit you have to eat." Hopefully,one day, as heir to the Lord Roby estate she won't have to eat shit anymore.
I've decided to start blogging today not because it's 'Lodge Day' but because It coincides with my first trip to the Labour Exchange since leaving school many, many, years ago.I think it's called JobCentre Plus nowadays.Where the Plus comes from God only knows! It all seems pretty damn negative to me.There doesn't seem to be much work out there for an over-qualified scientist,Evertonian with a penchant for fine wine. I'm expecting a rough ride when I get to the JCP office.I don't know why ; I just am.I'm pretty sure that it won't resemble the one in 'Boys from the Blackstuff' but nonetheless I'm not looking forward to it.To me it represents failure.In over 33 years I've never 'signed on' before and this gives me an immense amount of pride.I'll keep you briefed from Quaff Castle,Two Dogs.
Upper Working Class Evertonian made good.Used to be Working Class.Hates injustice particularly by bent referees and detests bad service but loves life and all that it brings.Carpe Diem from the cradle to the grave and beyond.