Archive for December, 2010

Today’s Tribute Video

Friday, December 31st, 2010

I think that for people my age and older, the Marx Brothers were an essential part of growing up. By the time I was aware of them, they had stopped making movies and were mostly slipping into retirement or death. However, Groucho went on, quipping on You Bet Your Life and a slew of talk shows.

CBS Sunday Morning profiled Groucho a few years ago on the anniversary of his death. My favourite Groucho line wasn’t from a movie, or from TV, but from a chance encounter in a restaurant. A priest came up to him and said, “Groucho, I’d just like to thank you for bringing so much joy into the world.” Without looking up from his meal, Groucho said, “And I’d like to thank you for taking so much joy out of it.”

In this time of enforced joy around the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, those of us who follow a religious path might want to think of that.

From Twitter 12-30-2010

Friday, December 31st, 2010
  • 00:09:00: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to retire. The exhibition would have been first-rate if they’d had seats for the lesser-abled (like me).
  • 08:56:35: Good morning,tweeps & peeps. Feeling better this morning–was a bit rough last night. Rest day today.
  • 16:43:56: RT @ianvisits: Retweet this and you stand a chance to win nothing, gain no new followers or get any follow backs. Thanks.
  • 21:30:05: RT @daveyrobson: Just got fucked. << Hooray! A late Christmas prezzie…
  • 23:51:50: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to hit the hay. I hope everyone has a safe New Year’s Eve. Remember, it’s Amateur Drinker’s Night!
  • 23:52:22: @TrevorWesley Because the whiskey drinkers prefer ginger ale with their tipple so the airlines stock lots of it.

Tweets copied by

Happy birthday, dirrtysean and charleswanmushi

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

…and many happy returns of the day!

From Twitter 12-29-2010

Thursday, December 30th, 2010
  • 08:52:07: Good morning, all. England has retained the Ashes overnight, hurray! A sports triumph for England–rare these days!
  • 11:50:23: RT @TheHollyJohnson: RT @donnaair: If you care about what other people think, you will always be their prisoner – james frey
  • 14:52:29: About to go out to the Serpentine Gallery…hope it’ll be a good exhibition.

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-28-2010

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010
  • 00:23:56: Well, tweeps and peeps, time for bed. Be good, and if you can’t be good be careful.
  • 08:24:00: Morning, tweeps & peeps. Will be a grey day in London today, unfortunately. But we may win the Ashes as well! So not so grey after all!
  • 12:56:51: @maleaddict Say “Hi!” to @perignonic for me…we share a birthday so I keep in touch…
  • 22:57:10: Well, all, I think it’s time to retire. Saw the Turner Prize entrants this afternoon…I liked Angela de la Cruz but the judges disagreed…

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-27-2010

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010
  • 08:35:16: Good morning, all. I hope that all my friends in ECNA will be OK during the blizzard and the cleanup afterward.
  • 08:53:27: @maleaddict Use hair remover. It might be called Neet or something else there. It’s great.
  • 09:03:42: @sexydeadstar Sweet dreams!
  • 09:16:42: @chelliahlaity Thanks; it has been quite quiet, so far. Hope you’re feeling well this morning.
  • 10:15:18: @MitchBenn Awwwww…..bless. I hope you can replace the iPod soon, and that everyone is safe and happy.
  • 12:37:44: RT @soveren: awwwwww that was a nice clever ending to #uglybetty ! woots << I’m hoping for a sequel!
  • 12:39:25: @soveren Yeah, and you should get in touch the next time you’re going up those stairs… 😉
  • 12:39:39: @soveren There is supposed to be a movie in the works.
  • 12:49:37: RT @soveren: @chrishansenhome ooooh like SATC huh, which i’ve not seen either of. haha << Yes, except loads better than SATC & SATC 2.
  • 13:41:23: @yuuutsu Has the head appeared yet? Push!
  • 17:07:17: Back from the Hayward Gallery. Best part of the exhibition was seeing Jo Brand and her family enter a few minutes after us. Sigh.
  • 17:56:39: @GaySkyHooker Jeebus H. Xrist, I’m going to have nightmares about that nose tonight…
  • 21:05:46: @jonk Sorry to hear it. I hope you survive the next two weeks…
  • 21:06:32: @GaySkyHooker Yeah, your nose IS pretty…pretty SCARY!!! 😉
  • 21:07:29: @HotRyu Oh, ok. Got a cam? 😉
  • 21:09:58: @jenny8lee My 43-year-old husband (Chinese) was refused a beer because he had no ID and they thought he was under 21.
  • 21:11:36: @sexydeadstar I’m sorry to hear that…may he rest in peace.
  • 21:21:33: @besskeloid Oh, ok. Could I possibly just _lean_ a little bit then?
  • 21:28:06: @besskeloid You can still bake a cake, you know. Just make sure your oven is level so it doesn’t _list_ heh heh heh.

Tweets copied by

The Bishop of Blackburn attacks bankers

Monday, December 27th, 2010

The Bishop of Blackburn’s Christmas sermon concerned the economic situation at this time and how people can fight back against the downturn and the cuts in services. I’ve looked on the Diocese’s website and that of the Cathedral, and neither has posted the text of Bishop Reade’s sermon, unfortunately.

I am very sympathetic to Bishop Reade’s message. Some background may assist non-UK people in understanding exactly what is going on.

In England and Wales, most funding for local government (that is, on the town, city, and county levels) comes from central government grants, not from local taxes. So the cuts in grants must be made up by either local tax rises or by local savings. The central government has capped the amount that the local tax (referred to as “council tax” here. It is a household tax based upon the value of the property in which you live, not limited to owners.) can rise, and it has the power to roll back rises that it feels are too high. So the localities are caught between that metaphorical rock and the hard place.

There is no doubt that many local councils have featherbedded many jobs. The chief executives (think “city manager” in US terms) are often paid 6-figure sums (said to be needed to attract the best candidates) and yet the services that the councils provide have been slashed and slashed again. The bins in front of St. Matthew’s Court (16 dwellings in the apartment block) were not emptied last week and the post-Christmas trash is now overflowing the area. I expect they will not be emptied this week, as Monday and Tuesday are Bank Holidays here to make up for the fact that Christmas was on Saturday and Boxing Day on Sunday. The mess will be monumental.

Services for children are also the responsibility of local councils. These services are labour-intensive and thus ripe for “economies”—slashing the number of personnel. This will end up being devastating for children who are in danger in their homes and will result in injuries and (sadly) in deaths. These will make the front pages of the tabloids and will force the Government to think again, but too late.

Housing is also a local council responsibility. The weather here has been perishingly cold for the past month (it hasn’t gone above 4 degrees C [around 39 degrees F] and has often been below 0 C) and there are a number of homeless people on the streets. Emergency shelter is easier around Christmas, but after New Year’s some of the providers disappear from the scene and people are left to freeze on the streets. The local council has the legal responsibility to house people, but has few open houses and even less funding to do it.

On the funding side, the banks have been preparing record bonuses for their employees and executives, waving their wads of cash in the Government and the populace’s faces and bleating that if they do not pay high bonuses, they will not be able to attract and retain the best bankers. Of course, the best bankers are the ones who got us into the mess we’re in now.

London is a world centre of finance and banking. You simply have to walk in the square mile of the City of London on a weekend to discover that it is deserted at times when no money is being made. The Government is scared witless that international banks will abandon London if they are forced to pare down bonuses and salaries.

I believe that the banks are playing a game of chicken with the Government. If bonuses are taxed away at 90%, even so the bankers who are here will be loth to move to, say, Dubai (where their champagne lunches will be few) or to Singapore (where there is little to do after-hours and where the weather is hotter than most of them will enjoy and where it’s a long haul flight to anywhere to ski) or to Shanghai (where no one understands their language and where doing business is problematic because of the system of government).

The social gospel (a.k.a. South Bank Religion, exemplified by Bp. John Robinson, Bp. Mervyn Stockwood, Dean Colin Slee) has withered to a great extent. The causes of this are rooted in the long period of Labour Government, where money was extolled, valued, and promoted. The poor were told that they had only to try harder and they would be carried along to prosperity on the tide of business upturns. Gordon Brown, as Chancellor, proclaimed the “end of the boom and bust economy”. If only.

Thus the Church as well as the State were ill-prepared for the next bust. The poor have become poorer, while the rich have escaped the worst of the cuts. What to do?

Protest in the streets will not be productive in the long run. The recent student protests have put Parliament into “siege mode”, where they feel that they are being coerced into reversing their course. That never works with government.

The Church has a duty to inform its worshipers and the general public about the moral and ethical aspects to the current financial crisis. Without this background, protests will soon descend into a simple striking out at the police who are monitoring the demonstration, rather then intelligently planning for mass action to show the depth of public anger about the financial situation today. The current government is not responsible for the financial crisis, of course. Most of the devastating incidents happened before it took power. What it is responsible for is how we climb out of it, and how we ensure that services are provided to people who need them.

Will the Bishop’s message penetrate to where it is most needed? Southwark’s own Bishop-elect, Christopher Chessun, is the Bishops’ Spokesman for Urban Life, and perhaps he might take up the challenge of persuading the bankers to behave more responsibly as well as encouraging people to vote, and vote in an informed manner. In the end, only votes matter to politicians in Western democracies.

From Twitter 12-26-2010

Monday, December 27th, 2010
  • 12:51:50: Good morning; happy Boxing Day to you all! I hope everyone is well after the Christmas gorge…er…holiday.
  • 13:53:10: @mhisham Rich people gave boxes of food and presents to their servants the day after Christmas, thus Boxing Day.
  • 19:43:12: @soveren Yes, there is usb3 but hardly any uses for it yet…
  • 19:44:40: @soveren it should default to acting like usb2, no?
  • 19:47:26: @soveren Opportunity to upgrade your computer to usb3 though!
  • 19:50:33: @soveren That’s no fun! The economy would collapse if everyone worked on 3 yr cycles!
  • 19:55:35: @soveren Our parish is still three years behind in its accounting…books? We don’t need no stinking books! 😉 I buy a new PC whenever!
  • 19:56:05: Off to forage for dinner. Play nice now…
  • 21:57:45: @RichTheTiger It’s in South London so it all depends on where you work, really (commuting(
  • 22:36:26: @antoinedodson24 And a happy holiday to you and your family as well!

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-25-2010

Sunday, December 26th, 2010
  • 01:54:40: Well, tweeps & peeps, after a very badly planned Midnight Mass, it’s bedtime for me. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!
  • 01:55:16: @TheBlackoutBlog Ask your dad about the blocks of cheese and the peanut butter! Really good stuff!
  • 01:55:33: RT @SunnyRainer: The person who can bring the spirit of laughter into a room is indeed blessed. -Bennett Cerf
  • 02:03:05: He repaid his debt to his rescuers; what an inspiring man! Rest in peace, Mr. Hargesheimer.
  • 02:04:17: @Fox_Mullder I will keep your brother, you, and your family in my prayers this Christmas.
  • 08:48:20: Good morning, all. Merry Christmas to all the tweeps & peeps out there.
  • 08:50:26: @thatsam Oh no!
  • 09:25:15: @thatsam No, I didn’t think that. They’re just bad news.
  • 11:14:52: Mince pies are out of the oven, now to whip the cream!
  • 11:30:42: @thatsam And to you as well!

Tweets copied by

Today’s Yuletide Video

Saturday, December 25th, 2010

We had chicken, not turkey this evening, and poured no fat down the drain. However, it’s apparently such a problem that some of the men who clean out the sewers have decided to sing a seasonal carol on the subject.

From Twitter 12-24-2010

Saturday, December 25th, 2010
  • 00:14:36: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to hit the hay. Hope y’all have a good Christmas Eve. Play nice now!
  • 08:19:26: @r4today There is nothing more unedifying than a BBC program endlessly blowing its own horn. He’s just the Pope & by 8 am it’ll be history.
  • 08:20:58: Morning, tweeps & peeps. Some old man in Rome is going to do Thought for the Day. No one will remember it by 8 am. I guarantee it.
  • 18:34:51: @Ricky_Martin Happy birthday! Many happy returns of the day!
  • 22:48:16: @PLAYBOYADONIS Thanks for the kind words. Have a safe and happy holiday!

Tweets copied by

London Stabbie wishes you all would just straighten up and fly right for a change!

Friday, December 24th, 2010

Stabbie is quite cross tonight. He’s avoided the last minute Christmas shopping rush as his hubby doesn’t want presents this year and he himself did all the food shopping yesterday and early today. However, as is his wont, Stabbie was quite annoyed this morning and needs to vent.

First up on the list is the checkout guy at Tesco’s at the Elephant. You were quite nice, you wished Stabbie a Merry Christmas, and you called him over when your queue was empty. However, you also rang up Stabbie’s four sesame bagels (20p apiece) as four very expensive filled doughnuts (70p apiece). Stabbie realises that some doughnuts and some bagels carry a slight resemblance to each other. But, for goodness’ sake, Tesco does not need the extra £2 that you have granted them through this mistake. Do they add it to your bonus, asks Stabbie, retroactively? As this is the season of Official Good Cheer, Stabbie finds it difficult to take his weapon out and prevent you from committing any more mistakes of this nature. He presumes that Tesco would go bankrupt without the help of incompetent checkout people and does not want to be solely responsible for Tesco taking a big hit on the bottom line. But do it again after the holidays are just a distant memory, fella, and you may need to run very very fast and very very far.

Second up is every dimwit texting or talking on their mobile phone while walking down the street. Is there some law that specifies that whenever Stabbie is walking (painfully, as Stabbie’s foot is still rather poorly) along the pavement some yahoo who has barely mastered how to turn the smartphone on approaches him, head buried in the touchscreen, and does not see him, forcing Stabbie to make a very tortured emergency detour. Due to Stabbie’s foot problems, walking in a reasonably straight line is OK but trying to turn on a dime is problematic.

Now I realise that smartphones are the wave of the future, starting a year ago, and that every dimbulb in every city of the world needs one. But, for goodness’ sake, is there any way that you could perhaps grow a third eye in the top of your head so that you could swerve and avoid Stabbie as he’s hauling his mean sack of comestibles home? If you can’t see your way clear to developing that third eye, perhaps Stabbie could help you do it—now where did Stabbie stow his drill?

Third on the Hit Parade, Stabbie has been struggling with his computer for the past couple of years. As is its wont, Windows PCs tend to accumulate crud over the years, and no computer is more assiduous at accumulating crud than Stabbie’s. It is time for Stabbie to do the unthinkable and clean off his computer and start again. This may be difficult, as Stabbie only uses a few programs regularly but has lots of them which he uses once in a while but wants to keep around. So Stabbie was very happy to find a utility that promised to fix all of Stabbie’s computer woes. He bought it, and ran it, and discovered that what the program really did was roll his computer back to the Dark Ages, require him to reinstall seemingly hundreds of Microsoft Windows Updates, and generally feel miserable about the entire thing. When Stabbie tried to roll back the rollback, he discovered that the company that made the utility had claimed that a complete rollback was possible, but such a claim, sadly, was totally untrue. The rollback was not possible, and since then Stabbie’s computer has every so often lost touch with the Intarwebz mothership (DNS servers, Stabbie thinks) and has to reestablish contact, without the genius of Lieutenant Uhura to man the switchboard that would make that possible. (Stabbie has tried changing DNS servers—don’t you worry about that! No effect.)

So, if Stabbie ever stumbles across the airheads who sold him this idiotware, he will gladly give them a piece of his mind. In order to emphasize his dissatisfaction with the software, he might actually create an excavation in the area that passes for their brains in order to insert a much more intelligent piece of mind. Then Stabbie will make them buy him a Mac.

Now, finally, Stabbie would dearly love to confront BBC News executives. This morning the BBC Radio4 Today show, without which Stabbie finds it difficult to digest breakfast and drink coffee, ran a 2-3/4 minute Thought for the Day spot contributed by His Holiness the Pope. As some religious figure delivers this spot each day, it was inevitable that someone would get around to asking the Pope to do one. And it was quite as one would expect from the Pope: “Thanks for not stoning me to death during my visit earlier this year; let’s put Christ back into Christmas, and I’m praying for you.” But why, Stabbie wonders, did the BBC build up to this event for days, have one slot before Thought for the Day where a representative of the National Secular Society took them to task for not confronting His Holiness about child sexual abuse by clergy, and one slot afterwards where the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Birmingham managed to say nothing new or interesting about either the Pope, the BBC, or Christmas. This “story” has run on every news bulletin on BBC Radio4 today. BBC Executives: You are overpaid, and you do not need to make your own news programs part of the news itself. I pay part of your salaries, and I think you need to think again about this kind of “non-event”. If you do it again, Stabbie may get even more annoyed and point out to you the error of your ways. Oh, and we’d appreciate it if you would return 2/3rds of your salaries in order to make your remuneration more nearly equal to your abilities and not equal to your inflated opinions of yourselves.

Stabbie wishes all his readers a blessed Christmas season, a happy New Year, and good health. But, don’t piss off any anonymous passers-by or casually encountered people you might meet—because, remember, Stabbie might be anywhere!

It gets better, Singapore!

Friday, December 24th, 2010

I have been waiting for an “It gets better” video from Singapore. It has arrived, and is first rate. Singapore has been a place where it is at the same time easy to live your own life but difficult to conform to your family’s and society’s expectations of you. Here are a goodly number of gay men and lesbians who are living examples of the phrase “It gets better”. It’s worth watching to the end, especially the man with the mask.

From Twitter 12-23-2010

Friday, December 24th, 2010
  • 00:10:58: Well, tweeps & peeps, despite my computer’s best efforts, I will tweet you all good night. Always look on the bright side of life! Cheers!
  • 00:20:45: RT @retxedmada: until I called them and learned they mixed my license number up with someone else’s. << Must have been a relief! Xmas prezzy
  • 00:29:30: RT @LucasLascivious: Fish Pedicures Pose HIV Risk << Very popular in Sg…please be cautious!
  • 00:36:05: RT @soveren: aww catherine tate’s nan’s xmas carol neat! n i fancy jamie woof! << You’ll have to fight me for Jamie. You can have Nan, ok?
  • 00:36:43: RT @bennyluo: I can’t seem to log into Skype, is anyone else having trouble? << Skype’s been FUBAR for a day or so…
  • 00:38:09: @therealgokwan Watch out you don’t get it where there’s any hair, or you’ll be hauling out the razor…
  • 00:38:53: @soveren Yeah, he’s dreamy.
  • 09:38:39: Good morning, all. Another grey morning in London. Shopping is mostly done and I may bake a US-style mince pie today.
  • 09:39:03: @retxedmada I am OK, thanks. You
  • 09:39:38: @luv_ktv Good. Think of tweeting as micro-blogging and you’ve pretty much got it.
  • 09:40:20: @retxedmada That last tweet should have ended with a question mark. “You?”
  • 10:25:29: @nickjeffery I’m afraid I like Westfield. Perhaps it ought to have been put somewhere else, but it’s convenient for me. YMMV, of course.
  • 10:28:33: RT @AboutLondonNews: London : The secrets of Parliament’s Victoria Tower uncovered
  • 20:15:33: Customer information board at Angel Tube Station, courtesy of ?
  • 20:15:54: It was courtesy of @cormac70, sorry I lost it for a moment.
  • 20:16:58: @50cent You are really neat!
  • 20:28:36: RT @LevequeThots: What are you going to do next?

Why am I always in the slowest line?

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Christmas shopping always brings out the worst in shoppers and in shops. Why am I always in the slowest line? Let Bill Hammack explain it all to you. Thanks to the Journal of Improbable Research for the reference.

Today’s Lexicographical Post

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Thanks to the Rev. Ann Fontaine for referring me to this.

The Washington Post’s Mensa Invitational once again invited readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition.

Here are the winners:

  • Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.
  • Ignoranus : A person who’s both stupid and an asshole.
  • Intaxicaton : Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.
  • Reintarnation : Coming back to life as a hillbilly.
  • Bozone ( n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.
  • Foreploy : Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid.
  • Giraffiti : Vandalism spray-painted very, very high.
  • Sarchasm : The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn’t get it.
  • Inoculatte : To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.
  • Osteopornosis : A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)
  • Karmageddon : It’s like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it’s like, a serious bummer.
  • Decafalon (n.): The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.
  • Glibido : All talk and no action.
  • Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.
  • Arachnoleptic Fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you’ve accidentally walked through a spider web.
  • Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.
  • Caterpallor ( n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you’re eating.

The Washington Post has also published the winning submissions to its yearly contest, in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for common words.

And the winners are:

  • Coffee, n.. The person upon whom one coughs.
  • Flabbergasted, adj. Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.
  • Abdicate, v. To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.
  • Esplanade, v. To attempt an explanation while drunk.
  • Willy-nilly, adj. Impotent.
  • Negligent, adj. Absentmindedly answering the door when wearing only a nightgown.
  • Lymph, v.. To walk with a lisp.
  • Gargoyle, n. Olive-flavored mouthwash.
  • Flatulence, n. Emergency vehicle that picks up someone who has been run over by a steamroller.
  • Balderdash, n. A rapidly receding hairline.
  • Testicle, n. A humorous question on an exam.
  • Rectitude, n. The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.
  • Pokemon, n. A Rastafarian proctologist.
  • Oyster, n. A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.
  • Frisbeetarianism, n. The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.
  • Circumvent, n. An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men

From Twitter 12-22-2010

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Tweets copied by

Today’s Holiday Tip

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010

Prioritise your Pies! Zombies first, then pies!

From Twitter 12-21-2010

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010
  • 09:17:58: @maleaddict Because they have no place else to put their donkeys? Seriously, if only going a few stops makes sense to sit on the outside.
  • 09:19:31: Good morning, all. Missed the lunar eclipse…shux. GP today, then shopping for Xmas. Roast chicken, we think.
  • 09:21:37: @nickjeffery Bosses demand that people come into work even when on death’s door on pain of sacking. So illness spreads throughout business.
  • 17:05:36: RT @hungskateboy: Grovery store then gym. Its nasty out. < Grovery stores are where one buys groves? Sounds like it must mean SOMEthing 🙂

Tweets copied by

Bumbling Britain

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

As many of you will be aware, Britain (and Europe generally) has been hit with a large (for us) amount of snow coupled with rather low temperatures in the last week. This has resulted in the closure and then tight flight restriction of Heathrow Airport, the cancellation of a number of Eurostar services, and a great amount of disruption on the East Coast Main Line from London to Scotland. On the roads and the sidewalks (pavements), clearing of snow and ice has only taken place on the main roads, while most pavements are still mired in ice and are skating rinks for the unwary.

For the last three years, Britain has lumbered under severe snowfalls at least once each year. This was not the case in the previous 14 years I have lived here—snow was rare and mostly consisted of flurries which did not stick, and temperatures stayed above 0° C most of the time. Every year for the last three, after the snow has fallen and the country is faced with paralysis, the scream goes up from the citizenry: “Why?”

Well, I’ll tell you why. The United Kingdom does not believe that buying snowplows, antifreeze, sand, and salt in the amounts necessary to cope with the kind of winters we’ve had lately is economical. This is belied by the pictures on the evening news of acres of hopeful passengers camping out at Heathrow Airport waiting to get on an airplane, and the queue to get on a Eurostar train, which queue stretches out the doors of St. Pancras International Railway Station down the Euston Road, ending somewhere in front of the British Library.

Heads will, of course, roll. Probably not the Transport Secretary’s; the government has no appetite for sacking yet another Cabinet minister (see below). Something may be done with the people at the airports and the railways responsible for deicing runways and running rails and overhead catenary wires. But sacking the personnel involved will not help the situation unless the country is willing to bite the bullet and plan out exactly what will take place when a snowfall occurs here.

Airports like that of Stockholm are still running; the only services curtailed are those to Heathrow and Frankfurt. Why doesn’t BAA (the owners of Heathrow) tempt Stockholm-Arlanda’s Director of Preparedness (or whatever they call the post) with a huge salary to come here and sort this out for us? If something like this does not happen, then next year, or the year after, when a paralysing snowfall dumps itself on the United Kingdom, I do not want to hear ANYone complaining about it. Either we decide to take our lumps and wait until the weather and the snow clears, or we plan for this occurrence and commit the money required to keep transport running through it.

In political news, we were greeted this morning with the news that the Business Secretary, Vince Cable MP (a Liberal Democrat), had been caught speaking indiscreetly to two people who he thought were constituents but who were actually reporters for the Daily Telegraph, which is the main Tory broadsheet newspaper here in the United Kingdom. Among the tidbits were:

  • Being in the coalition government is like being at war.
  • However, if the Tories push him too far, there is always the nuclear option of resigning.
  • He compared the Coalition Government’s policies and reforms to ‘a kind of Maoist revolution’ and thought that the Liberal Democrats should be a kind of brake on them.
  • He “declared war” on Rupert Murdoch (owner of News International, Sky, and lots of other stuff here, in the US, and in Australia) and thought that he himself would win.

Now the first three should not be news to anyone who follows British politics. However, the last one is one nuclear option that perhaps Mr. Cable wanted to avoid. His department is considering whether Murdoch should be able to buy the portion of BSkyB that he does not now own. For the Cabinet minister who would make the decision as to whether this purchase should go ahead to express such bold anti-Murdoch sentiments to people whom he did not know is unwise, to say the least. While many were calling for Cable’s head, the news has just broken that he will continue as a Cabinet minister while losing control over the BSkyB sale to Jeremy Hunt, the Culture, Media, and Sport Secretary. For the Liberal Democrats to lose two Cabinet ministers (David Laws being the first to resign from his post as Chief Secretary to the Treasury because he fiddled his expenses to conceal the fact that his landlord was actually his same-sex partner.) would be extremely unfortunate. (Declaration of interest: I am a registered Liberal Democrat.)

An additional bumble is this: the Daily Telegraph did not break the news about Cable’s attitude toward Murdoch. A leaker within the Daily Telegraph passed that information to Robert Peston, the famously hesitant-voiced economics editor of BBC News. The reason that the Telegraph chose not to publish these remarks is probably because it agrees with them and did not want to expose Cable’s indiscretion on this subject to public view. Sauce, goose; sauce, gander!

The third bumble was committed on the Radio 4 breakfast news and comment show, Today. I listen every day and get my main daily diet of news from it. Last week, one of the subjects of discussion was the aforementioned Culture, Media and Sport Secretary, Jeremy Hunt. In announcing the segment, James Naughtie, one of the main presenters, said that he was going to be interviewing “Jeremy C*nt”. He followed this with a long interval of coughing and sputtering. This mistake captured the smiles of millions at their breakfast tables. While that particular word is considered fairly taboo here, it is not absolutely proscribed in print or on TV or radio. Any usage of it has to be justified. In the US, of course, anyone who made that particular mistake would be banned from the airwaves and the station or channel that carried it would be fined. Naughtie apologised later on during the show, and disappeared for a few days while the country was digesting the news that he’d slipped up. Later on another BBC presenter, in reporting Naughtie’s mistake, made the exact same mistake. Another apology. The nation chortled.

Thus, I live in a country where gaffes are made almost continuously. I love the frisson of danger this adds to listening to, watching, or reading the news. Others think that the country is going to the dogs. If it is, then I say, “Woof!”

From Twitter 12-20-2010

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010
  • 00:10:44: Well, tweeps & peeps, time for bed. Have been Twitter-remiss today, I’m afraid. I hope that normal service will be restored tomorrow.
  • 09:22:30: Good morning, all. Still frozen (-4C when I got up). Heathrow is a hotel, not an airport. Christmas is coming. Hibernation time, methinks!
  • 23:56:27: OK, all. Time for bed. Rather frustrating day computer-wise. Still can’t get MSN to work… 🙁 Sleep tight!

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-19-2010

Monday, December 20th, 2010
  • 09:00:51: Morning, all. Preaching this AM, not expecting a big crowd. Too icy.

Tweets copied by

Today’s Sermon

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

November 28, 2010 Fourth Sunday of Advant

Sermon delivered at St. John the Evangelist, 10 AM.

First Reading: Isaiah 7:10-14; Ps. 23; Epistle: Romans 1:1-7; Gospel: Matthew 1:18-24

In the name of God, the one, the Undivided Trinity. AMEN.

I hesitate to say this, but among my interests is public transport and railways. In America such people are called railfans, and here they are sometimes referred to as trainspotters. I state here and now that I do not own an anorak and I do not sit on cold railway platforms writing down locomotive numbers. I do have an interest in the many and varied ways that people all over the world use to travel around their cities and their countries.

One of the email transport lists I look at had a story about a crime on the Underground system in Boston, which is called the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, or the “T”, for short.

A woman leaving a train took her iPhone out of her bag. While she was using it, a robber snatched it from her hands and ran down the platform, intending to leave the station with it.

I don’t know about you, but in those circumstances I would do what this lady did: I’d have screamed “THIEF!”, and started to chase him. Often such chases end in the thief being faster than the victim, and we see in the last picture of the situation the victim standing on the street, watching the thief escape.

This story, on the other hand, had a happier ending for the victim. Two intrepid employees of the “T” gave chase and cornered the robber. He tried to leave the station through a ceiling-high gate and was caught there.

The two men were braver than might first appear. When the police arrived and arrested the robber, they discovered that he was armed with a rather large knife. Thankfully, he didn’t use it and was thus spared the horror of injuring someone physically and being punished for that crime rather than simply for the crime of robbery.

His name is Christopher, which, as most of you will realise, means “Bearer of Christ”. He is only 18 years old. He is a heroin user and a drug dealer, judging from the drug paraphernalia found on him when he was arrested. Now I am not an apologist for youth crime and young criminals; blaming distressed circumstances for one’s criminal behaviour is just not on. But here’s where the story intrigued me, and I hope it’ll intrigue you as well.

One of the men who captured Christopher asked him, “Why did you do it? Christopher said that he was just down on his luck and that he needed the money. The worker replied, “You could have at least asked people for money.” and Christopher looked at him and said, “Would anybody give me money?”

We’ve all encountered people panhandling—it’s almost the norm in the subways under the Elephant and Castle. Some look relatively neat, some have a pet (Tan always insists on giving them money when they have a dog with them.), and some look very much the worse for wear. The question we might ask is, “Would anyone give _them_ money?”

Whether of money, or of toys for the kids, or warm socks and mittens, or of a great Christmas meal, ended only by switching on the telly to watch the Queen’s Christmas message, gifts are on all our minds during this season. We try to think of the best gifts to give each of our family and friends. We brave the Arctic conditions outside to purchase them or order them online and wait by the mailbox to ensure that they don’t fall into the hands of the recipient before the 25th. When we’re children, we speculate on what Father Christmas has in store for us, and when we’re adults, we shake gaily-wrapped boxes to see if we can figure out what Aunt Barbara has given us just from the sound it makes.

We believe that we deserve presents, and we “Oooo!” and “Ahhhh!” as each box is unwrapped and its contents are displayed. Even the box from Aunt Jane, revealed to contain an ancient fruitcake, drilled full of holes which are in turn filled with brandy, is welcomed with the same enthusiasm as we greet some object we’ve longed for and which is now ours, through the grace of the giver.

We then discard the wrappings, and for the rest of its useful life appreciate the item we’ve received. Christmas recedes into far memory; soon Easter looms. And don’t think that Easter is that far away; Tesco’s puts out a shelf of Easter eggs the week after New Year’s, every year. Count on it.

The point of gifts at Christmas is that they are always deserved. Your family and friends love and treasure you, and the gifts you receive are recompense, in some small way, for your presence in their lives and in their histories. A child may have been a longed-for addition to a family where the parents had long since given up hope for children. The child’s gift to her parents is in some small way a thank offering for the supreme gift of birth and continuing life and nurturing in their family. Even the dog who gets a bone wrapped in silver paper and tied with a red ribbon deserves the gift after offering his devoted unconditional love to the family of which he is a part.

As Christians, there is one gift that we receive around this time each year, every year. Preachers preach about it, carollers sing about it, the Scriptures tell us about it, The first time we received this gift, it wasn’t under a decorated tree, and it probably wasn’t around the Winter Solstice when it was given. Joseph and Mary were the first to know about the gift, and Joseph considered rejecting it at first.

Joseph seems to be relatively embarrassed about it all. He considers discreetly getting rid of Mary and her unborn child, even though they were engaged to be married. Something wasn’t right, and he wanted no part of it. The angel persuaded him otherwise, and he accepted the gift.

Jesus was that gift, God-with us.

The robber, Christopher, looked at his captor and asked, “Would anybody give me money?” We are in the same boat when it comes to Christmas and God-with-us. Would anybody give us the gift of God-with-us? Do we deserve it?


From Twitter 12-18-2010

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

Tweets copied by

CHKDSK dilemma in Vista

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

All you Linux-heads and Mac-heads, you may go to the next post now. Nothing to see here, move right along…

For all you who remain, I’ve got a nagging problem that is driving me rather around the bend. Background: I have a Dell server (which I use for a workstation), with a RAID array (I believe it’s RAID 0), running Windows Vista, patched up to date. What is bothering me is this: I keep the computer on 24/7, but of course it occasionally hangs or needs rebooting for various other reasons such as updating. When I reboot, most often than not the machine wants to run CHKDSK before starting up again. When it does, it invariably says that there is a problem with the file gameuxmig.dll. It fixes the problem, then reboots, and service goes on normally until the next reboot.

I have AVG Anti-Virus Free, latest version, and XoftSpy XE, also latest version, both with malware files up to date. Neither of them has caught any viruses on my machine.

I thus decided to Google “gameuxmig.dll” to see whether there was any information on what kind of file it was. There are a shedload of references, but most of them seem to trace back to anti-virus sites that may or may not be legit (as I don’t recognise them), so I refrain from following the links.

I also tried to google CHKDSK to see whether there were any online pages I could visit to learn about how it works and what the various error messages it throws mean. No luck there, either. I got lots of Q&A sites, where if you pay for guidance, or trawl through hundreds of questions from the clueless, you might find what you need to know. I did not get any useful sites.

My question to you, dear techie friends (or friends of dear techie friends) is this: What is gameuxmig.dll? Where does it come from (I think it’s part of Windows, but can’t be sure)? What does it do? And why does it always go wrong on the disk and have to be corrected by CHKDSK?

I may try Bing, or Yahoo!, or some other search engine to see whether they give any further useful information. And, as for CHKDSK, I went into the Windows technical pages and looked for technical information about what CHKDSK does and what the messages it turns up mean. No dice there either.

Wit’s end, here…any references, steer to references, or suggestions for more useful search terms gratefully received.

Today’s Video

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

The vicar may be camp, and not attired in the proper vestments for preaching, but the message, surprisingly, is valid no matter how camp he is.

This Christmas think about not what you want, but what you need. And chillax.

From Twitter 12-17-2010

Saturday, December 18th, 2010
  • 00:06:42: RT @dhruv_dhody wondering how stalking use to work without facebook and twitter? << they did actual legwork!!
  • 11:06:58: Oh what a good boy is John… RT DentonPolice 12/17/2010 03:26 | 19 yo | CONSUMPTION OF ALCOH
  • 11:21:18: Looks like the alcohol won, John… RT DentonPolice 12/17/2010 03:26 | 19 yo | CONSUMPTION OF ALCOH
  • 11:22:18: RT @citygay: Spotted an Ambulance, 2 paramedic motorbikes & police car outside Pleasuredrome this AM on my walk to work. Dread to think why.
  • 18:30:50: I’ve been remiss today. Had a nice lunch, blogged about Bishop @nickbaines and made cold sesame noodles for dinner. Catching up w #FB now…
  • 20:55:56: Gotta do my Augustine translation (it’s a day late already) and then write my sermon, which is already in my head & just needs transcribing.

Tweets copied by

Meteorology is fun!

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Today’s joke:

It’s late Fall, and the Indians on a remote reservation in South Dakota asked their new chief if the coming winter was going to be cold or mild.

Since he was a chief in a modern society, he had never been taught the old secrets. When he looked at the sky, he couldn’t tell what the winter was going to be like.

Nevertheless, to be on the safe side, he told his tribe that the winter was indeed going to be cold and that the members of the village should collect firewood to be prepared.

But, being a practical leader, after several days, he got an idea.

He went to the phone booth, called the National Weather Service and asked, ‘Is the coming winter going to be cold?’

‘It looks like this winter is going to be quite cold,’ the meteorologist at the weather service responded.

So the chief went back to his people and told them to collect even more firewood in order to be prepared.

A week later, he called the National Weather Service again. ‘Does it still look like it is going to be a very cold winter?’

‘Yes,’ the man at National Weather Service again replied, ‘it’s going to be a very cold winter.’

The chief again went back to his people and ordered them to collect every scrap of firewood they could find.

Two weeks later, the chief called the National Weather Service again. ‘Are you absolutely sure that the winter is going to be very cold?’

‘Absolutely,’ the man replied. ‘It’s looking more and more like it is going to be one of the coldest winters we’ve ever seen.’

‘How can you be so sure?’ the chief asked.

The weatherman replied, ‘The Indians are collecting a shitload of firewood.’

Bishop Nick Baines translated to Diocese of Bradford

Friday, December 17th, 2010

I resisted the urge to put “I Told You So, Part 1” as the subject of this blog post.

Downing Street has just announced, and Bishop Nick has confirmed on his blog, that he has been nominated by the Queen to serve as Bishop of Bradford, in Yorkshire. The story is also on the Diocese of Bradford’s website.

You may recall that a while back I predicted that Bishop Nick would be the next Archbishop of Canterbury, predicating that on his translation to a Diocese within the next few years. This is the first part of that prediction, which has now come true.

To repeat what I said about him, in summary, I believe that the deficiencies of one bishop/archbishop/incumbent of a parish are then compensated for in the appointment of his or her successor. One major deficiency of the current Archbishop of Canterbury is that he is a piss-poor communicator. ++Rowan was appointed as a compensation for the shortcomings of the previous Archbishop, who was thought to be somewhat deficient in the thought department. The next Archbishop of Canterbury will have to be someone who is not only intelligent and pastoral, but also a great communicator. Bishop Nick GETS Twitter and the blogosphere better than any other occupant of a seat on the Bench of Bishops in England. He is a good blogger, a good writer, a Tweeter of note, a broadcaster on the populist BBC Radio 2’s God-slot, and (to my mind) a good bishop. He is also relatively broad-Church leaning toward Evangelical, which is where Buggins’s Turn would place the next Archbishop.

As for the Diocese of Southwark, this will place our new Bishop, Christopher Chessun, in the position of appointing two Suffragan Bishops and the Dean of Southwark in the first few months of his tenure. I expect that the third suffragan, Bishop Richard Cheetham of Kingston, will be translated sometime in the new year, which will give Bishop Christopher a clean slate of new suffragans to work with. I also expect that some of the six Archdeacons will retire or take new posts or be en-mitred within the next two years or so.

So, watch this space, folks.

From Twitter 12-16-2010

Friday, December 17th, 2010
  • 12:21:50: Morning all. Still thinking about writing my sermon for Sunday. I wish I could finish it now so that Friday & Saturday would be stress-free.
  • 12:29:48: Andrew: Otter alert! RT DentonPolice: 12/15/2010 21:29 | 22 yo | EXPIRED REGISTRATION
  • 12:31:23: Josh! Is! Blond! RT DentonPolice 12/15/2010 21:41 | 19 yo | THEFT < $ 50.00
  • 12:32:41: Bob’s a Conehead RT DentonPolice 12/15/2010 21:29 | 29 yo | GRAFFITI PECUNIARY L
  • 12:39:46: Look into the eyes… RT DentonPolice: 12/16/2010 01:45:05 | 22 years old | ALCOHOL PUBLIC INTOXICATION
  • 12:41:37: John looks quite tasty… RT DentonPolice: 12/16/2010 03:19 | 23 yo | ALCOHOL PUBLIC INTOX
  • 13:42:44: Off to the quacks…see you later!
  • 21:57:30: RT @Naoij: I’m back did you miss me? << Indeed, I was wondering where you’d landed…glad to see you back.
  • 23:18:21: RT @JoexEd: @chrishansenhome whats an otter? << Think of a thin bear…
  • 23:20:51: RT @jonk: @dchizzle i’m going to la a couple days for the usual christmas thing. << La-la-la-la-LAHHHHH-la-lahh-la-LAH! Have a good one…

Tweets copied by

Happy birthday, am0

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

…and many happy returns of the day.

From Twitter 12-15-2010

Thursday, December 16th, 2010
  • 00:07:38: I’ve neglected you today, Twitterverse. I apologise profusely. Off to bed now, hope to resume normal activity tomorrow. Cya!
  • 00:09:01: Christopher is unhappy… RT DentonPolice 12/14/2010 15:13 | 29 yo | POSS MARIJ < 2OZ
  • 11:11:30: @jonk Thanks for that. I have not drunk any sugary Coke in almost 20 years, being diabetic. I thought there was chili in it or something.
  • 11:12:28: Good morning, all. Blue-grey skies in London this morning. Nothing in my diary for today, yay!
  • 21:15:32: RT @jayehmsee: I hate when bathroom faucets with sensors deny my existence.
  • 21:46:24: RT @liz_sparkes: RT @brendanjOTA: I want a part-time job on full-time wages. Suggestions?>> Tube driver
  • 23:44:57: RT @daraobriain: Mmmm, Manx Knobs! tasty!

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-14-2010

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010
  • 00:03:36: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to travel to the Land of Nod. Be good, and if you can’t be good be careful! It’s a jungle out there.
  • 22:48:52: Nerd… RT DentonPolice 12/14/2010 14:19 | 21 yo | THEFT >=$500 < $1,500/DPD | BURGL
  • 22:51:32: @jonk what’s a Mexican Coke? Enquiring minds want to know!

Tweets copied by

Happy birthday, jebenmed and jesus_h_biscuit

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

…and many happy returns of the day!

From Twitter 12-13-2010

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-12-2010

Monday, December 13th, 2010
  • 13:04:30: @mariocruzxxx your beauty sleep works perfectly! xxx
  • 13:28:38: @thedaveywavey I presume you’re cut, then.
  • 17:42:07: @dchizzle No, but make sure that if you have a + result, other investigations are done before major intervention. Prostate biopsy is painful
  • 17:42:53: Evening, all. Went to a good concert last night but my feet have suffered today because of the travel. Resting comfortably at the moment…
  • 22:38:04: Jeez, everyone is watching this #XFactor stuff…
  • 22:41:32: RT @MrPandaBehr: Having BJ’s in the parking lot with the bear. Ice cream that is. ? << I was a bit startled until I read the entire tweet.
  • 22:44:56: Jason _does_ have a porn stache… RT DentonPolice: 12/12/2010 13:52 | 28 yo | MRP DWI
  • 22:47:15: RT @TrevorWesley: The evening news is where they begin with ‘Good evening’, and then proceed to tell you why it isn’t.
  • 22:51:02: @thepandav2 I hope the bad memories go away…hugs.
  • 23:58:34: @Shimmycocopuffs This guy is Chinese Canadian:

Tweets copied by

Family Acceptance Project video

Sunday, December 12th, 2010

I know that there are hundreds or thousands of families where their gay or lesbian child is accepted and loved for who s/he is. There are many more thousands of families where the child is disowned, kicked out of the house, or abused mentally and physically.

This particular video is of a normal Hispanic-American family whose son came out, and what happened afterward. The father, an ex-Marine, is built like a brick sh*thouse, but the father and mother are so loving and gracious toward their son, that this video is amazingly good. A better set of poster-people for acceptance of lesbian and gay children you could not get anywhere. Their son is cute as well (he reminds me of Justin on Ugly Betty).

It’s 15 minutes long, but worth watching.

If only all parents and adults were as rational as well as loving, lots of trauma in the world would be avoided. I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of trauma. During Advent, when Christians are preparing ourselves and our homes for the coming of the Christchild, let’s think about what kind of home we’re welcoming Him to. I’m certain that the Christchild would be absolutely delighted to go to EJ’s family home—would He be as happy to come to mine, I wonder.

The Wikileaks documents turn to religious matters

Saturday, December 11th, 2010

I have just read the text of the Wikileaked cable from the US Ambassador to the Vatican, where the British Ambassador to the Vatican seems to cast doubt on the Anglican Ordinariate and predicts some violent backlashes from enraged Protestants in England and a chilly reception from the Royal Family of the Pope during his recent visit to the UK. It made the morning news on Radio 4’s Today program this morning, and all I could think of was, “It must be a slow news day.”

First, the cable displays a profound ignorance of the facts on the ground and the back story to the Ordinariate. As I have posited previously, the Ordinariate is not a vehicle for the Vatican to welcome disaffected Anglicans with open arms into the bosom of Holy Mother the Church. It is, in fact, a quarantine camp or, more bluntly, a leper colony into which those disaffected Anglicans can be placed so as to cause minimum damage to the Roman Catholic Church. The cable does admit that the number of Anglicans going over is likely to be a trickle rather than a flood, but there are no startling insights available from the text as given.

Second, the cable documents the dismay of Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams at not being consulted over the Ordinariate. This is undoubtedly true (as I have seen in other fora and heard from people who might actually know something of the subject), but was widely known beforehand. What the cable didn’t say, but what is undoubtedly the case, is that Williams is relieved that the malcontents are swimming the Tiber and only annoyed at the fact that more of them won’t be going. Rome’s centralised power structure means that they can control the Ordinariate more closely than Williams could ever control or even mildly influence the malcontents.

What concerns me is that our representative at the Vatican (and probably the US’s as well) is so uninformed about religious matters that they could write this stuff. “Tell us something we don’t know or can’t deduce from afar!” we cry. One would expect that the British Ambassador to the Vatican would be better informed about the state of Vatican-Anglican relations and more able to make predictions and sense trends in them.

This perhaps means that instead of posting Catholic laypeople to the Vatican as representatives, the UK ought to send people there who are clued in about Anglican affairs as well, regardless of the altar rail at which they receive Communion on a Sunday.

From Twitter 12-10-2010

Saturday, December 11th, 2010
  • 11:00:49: Good morning, tweeps & peeps. Smell the banana bread? Just took a loaf out of the oven. Teatime delight this afternoon, I think.
  • 11:04:45: Sorprised that you were arrested? RT @DentonPolice: 12/10/2010 03:49:04 | 19 years old | DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED
  • 11:05:34: So cute he must be innocent! RT DentonPolice: 12/10/2010 02:25 | 22 yo | POSSESSION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA
  • 11:08:25: A Singaporean breakfast treat: Kaya toast: I recommend it if you are unconcerned with calories but wild for taste!
  • 11:11:31: Hardly old enough to shave… RT DentonPolice: 12/09/2010 20:31:20 | 22 years old | POSS CS PG 2 < 1G
  • 11:19:05: All he needs s a porn stache… RT DentonPolice: 12/10/2010 02:25 | 22 yo | POSSESSION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA
  • 11:21:45: Driving while black? RT DentonPolice: 12/10/2010 01:35 | 23 yo | SPEEDING – CAPIAS | LEWISVILLE PD / FMFR – CAP
  • 11:28:26: @dchizzle Do watch out-PSA results can be unreliable and you might then have unnecessary intervention. Few get prostate cancer < 50 y.o.
  • 22:50:04: RT @Fozzzzz: Can I get 150 followers by Monday??? Probably not >_> << You’ve got 149 now so #FF everyone!
  • 22:52:35: #FF @HotRyu because he wants smiles and hot avatars…
  • 23:47:47: Q. How do we know that Jesus wasn’t a Rastafarian? A. Because he was crucified, not stoned. (drum riff)

Tweets copied by

Today’s Religious Joke

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Don’t blame me, blame spwebdesign, with whom HWMBO, I, and fj had dinner.

Q. How do we know that Jesus wasn’t a Rastafarian?

A. Because he was crucified, not stoned.

A Christian at work?

Friday, December 10th, 2010

In the UK there has recently been a flurry of interest in the Rt Rev’d and Rt Hon. Lord Carey of Clifton, PC’s new initiative to combat the “bullying” of Christians at work and in society. The poster-person for this is a person who was forbidden to wear a neckchain with a cross on it at work (she’s a nurse). Another person who worked for British Airways was sacked for refusing to remove a neckchain with a cross when on duty. According to Carey (the former Archbishop of Canterbury), along with such usual suspects as the Rt Rev’d Michael Nazir-Ali, the former Bishop of Rochester and the Rt Rev’d Peter Forster, the Bishop of Chester, this amounts to bullying of Christians in the workplace. Some would go so far as to defend the registrar in Islington who was sacked for refusing to conduct civil partnerships and the marriage counselor for Relate who could not bring himself to counsel same-sex couples in need of relationship counseling. (I apologise for using links to the Daily Mail, in which I would normally not even wrap fish.)

Now the British examples are relatively benign, in that very British way where we are enormously polite to each other in public. The alleged bullying or persecution of Christians seems, to me, to be a last-ditch attempt by those who have traditionally run things in the United Kingdom to preserve their special status and keep the right to discriminate for themselves, while denying that right to everyone else. Imagine the outcry if a Wiccan registrar refused to register the wedding of a devout Christian couple because of their attitudes towards Wiccans.

In any case, were the Rt Rev’d Lord Carey to win out, I wonder if this news item would be the result, translated to England. Would HWMBO and I be the targets of radical and violent Evangelical proselytising at home after having solemnised our civil partnership at Southwark registry office?

Fun with gases, for trawnapanda

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Boy, those chemistry teachers have lots of fun!

From Twitter 12-09-2010

Friday, December 10th, 2010
  • 00:55:50: Well, tweeps & peeps, not feeling well this evening. Will call the foot clinic tomorrow. Wish me luck!
  • 16:28:13: Hello all…a bit late checking in this afternoon. Trying to rest and relax today. Happy birthday to Louie Crew, by the way!
  • 16:28:56: RT @Hey_its_AJ: RT @westchesterdead: Best headline ever!!!
  • 20:12:31: RT @Traphik: Ahahaha my mom almost saw me butt nekkid right now. Sometimes I forget I came from her vagina. << she diapered you too, no?
  • 20:14:22: @jonk Felt better today so put off foot clinic to see whether everything clears up.

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-08-2010

Thursday, December 9th, 2010
  • 00:01:11: RT @dhruv_dhody: 70% of tweets are mindless jabber and this is one of em! X << So what, you take great pictures and are handsome, so no prob
  • 00:01:56: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to go to bed. Foot is in a bit of pain, and the weather has inflamed my arthritic fingers. Poor me…good night!
  • 12:16:01: Good morning, all. HWMBO cut my hair this morning and I feel like a weight has dropped from my shoulders…

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-07-2010

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010
  • 08:14:58: RT @weeteck: it’s a fucking furnace at work! what the hell happened to the aircon? knn #fb << The A/C has migrated to Europe.
  • 15:16:14: Morris is too young to be a hippie… RT DentonPolice: 12/07/2010 05:26 | 33 yo | DPD WARRANT

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-06-2010

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010
  • 00:27:11: @GaySkyHooker Brava, brava!! (tosses bouquet)
  • 00:29:01: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to hit the hay. I have nothing in the calendar until Saturday! Bliss! Play nice now! Careful of the return key!
  • 11:47:55: Morning, all. A quiet week ahead, only two appointments in the calendar. Cold this AM: -2 C.
  • 15:30:12: RT @Traphik: Good morning. Either I have a crazy morning erection, or this cold ass ithaca weather froze my penis << Which was it?
  • 15:40:06: @PLAYBOYADONIS And much year end love to you as well.
  • 20:15:48: @daveyrobson good for you! glad you enjoyed it.
  • 22:54:21: @fj Only bags I have are under my eyes.
  • 22:55:33: RT @sexydeadstar: There’s a super cute little high school soccer player at the store << You could show him your balls…soccer balls, of cos
  • 23:28:06: RT @mariocruzxxx: 61 days today clean and sober #fb << Congratulations!
  • 23:41:20: RT @guardiannews: Oxford colleges took no black students last year
  • 23:42:15: RT @mariocruzxxx: @chrishansenhome thank you sweetie 🙂 it feels good << I’ll keep u in my prayers…
  • 23:57:48: Well, tweeps & peeps, must go to bed. My feet are aching and it’s too late to do much about it…Play safe and nice tonight!

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-05-2010

Monday, December 6th, 2010
  • 09:31:54: Good morning, all. A blue-grey morning here in London. Church, then rest today. It’s a day of rest, innit?
  • 09:32:39: RT @dhruv_dhody: mystery solved! double rainbows = gods having gay sex! << Hm, can they save some for us mortals?
  • 21:32:57: RT @BrandonPinckney: RT @TheKillerTruth If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.
  • 21:36:07: Nice ginger cublet… RT DentonPolice: 12/05/2010 13:46:00 | 21 years old | THEFT PROP >= $50 < $500
  • 21:38:41: Dude, I’ll give you the green light… RT DentonPolice: 12/05/2010 13:55 | 19 yo | RAN RED LIGHT | FMFR
  • 21:40:22: Dude, what big eyes you have! RT DentonPolice: 12/05/2010 13:43 | 22 years old | THEFT PROP >=$50 < $500
  • 21:43:07: Chinstraps are so…backwoods RT DentonPolice: 12/05/2010 02:13 | 23 yo | ALCOHOL PUBLIC INTOXICATION
  • 21:48:04: @sshawnn I took an afternoon nap that stretched into an early evening one, so I commented as soon as I could…
  • 21:52:16: RT @MikeonTV: The Korean Afterlife \<< Heard about this one with spoons rather than chopsticks. Good in a sermon.
  • 21:58:32: RT @GaySkyHooker: *Rehearsing ‘Queen Of The Night’ dance routine… < Can u hit the high notes??

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-04-2010

Sunday, December 5th, 2010
  • 00:23:29: RT @dhruv_dhody: pretty & witty & ohhh sooooo gay! X << That’s you to a “T”!!
  • 00:24:19: RT @dhruv_dhody: what does it mean btw? << Haven’t the faintest idea. If you find out tell us!
  • 00:35:33: RT @EmmaK67: What the fuckityfuckfuck IS THIS? Anyone? ANYONE? @serafinowicz) << It was fun! That’s what!
  • 00:37:14: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to hit the hay. Colin Slee’s funeral tomorrow 🙁 Sleep tight now.
  • 11:36:25: Waiting for Dean Colin’s funeral to begin.

From Twitter 12-03-2010

Saturday, December 4th, 2010
  • 13:31:50: afternoon, all. Bad evening yesterday, and church drop-in lunch is cancelled because of bad weather. Lots of snow on the ground and -1 C.
  • 15:42:27: @thatsam I suppose you could make a small one…

Tweets copied by

From Twitter 12-02-2010

Friday, December 3rd, 2010
  • 01:19:24: well, tweeps and peeps, time for bed. hope you’ll all play safe and have a good night.
  • 11:44:40: morning, tweeps & peeps. Hope you’re all surviving the snow if you’re in the UK. still sputtering down here in London.
  • 16:21:47: RT @JoexEd: I feel like making a milkshake and getting boys to come to my yard. << Sounds good to me…
  • 17:02:17: Thank goodness that the UK didn’t get the 2018 World Cup. We will still be recovering from the 2012 disaster^WOlympics then.
  • 17:10:10: RT @lynneguist: Cockney rhyming slang gets a lot of attention. But rhyming slang isn’t limited to London:
  • 17:12:52: RT @hungskateboy: yummy yummy yummy i got love in my tummy! << You been swallowing again?

Tweets copied by