Thursday, November 30, 2006

Happy St Andrew's Day

I look forward to my national day soon becoming a public holiday in Scotland. And of course, each nation of the United Kingdom, being able to celebrate their own national saints days in a similar manner.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Celeb Spotting

A bumper day for rubbish celebs today and a nice mix of the showbiz, political and even royal....

First was Jon from S Club 7 - a proper rubbish celeb.
Then Michael Howard (second time spotted on this blog)
Then, the Duchess of Cornwall in a car (possibly with Prince Charles, but I didn't see him, so he wasn't crap celeb-spotted).

Don't think I can take the pace of the showbiz whirl that I live on the boundaries of......

Friday, November 24, 2006

Tory Tosser Campaign

The Conservatives have come up with a new campaign encouraging people to think about personal debt. The main thrust of the campaign is that you shouldn't listen to your inner tosser who encourages you to spend money you don't have. As you can imagine, the Daily Mail are apoplectic.

When I first read about it I was fairly reactionary, but having read the site I have moderated my comments slightly...

First the positives - I'm really pleased that a major political party are speaking about personal debt. It's an issue that affects literally millions of people in the UK and I'm delighted that the Conservatives are talking about more than just the theoreticals of politics and actually looking at the practical issues which make a difference to the lives of individuals.

There is some really useful information laid out in a clear and non-scary manner. And the advice isn't bad either.

Some of the suggestions, which I hope are policy commitments, are really sensible.

If you get past the attention-grabbing tosser character, it's not a bad site/campaign.

Now the negatives....

I completely agree that people have to take responsibility for their own actions and anything which encourages this is a good thing. By why talk about just individual responsibilities? There is a corporate responsibility too. People who give out credit should really consider the ability of their debtors to repay. Who thinks its a good idea to give students upwards of £10,000 in credit/store cards? The campaign should also accept that while individuals can be tossers by over-spending money they can't afford, the banks/store cards are equally tosserish by making this possible.

Are the suggestions serious policy commitments? If so, excellent, if not there need to be policy commiments. Will these include funding for CABs?

Not everyone in debt is a middle-class tosser who spent their money on designer goods and Cristal. If this is the Conservative idea of the personal debt problem in the UK then there's still a huge way to go. Debt affects people from every class, let's look at people in debt because they need to feed their kids not just because they've been buying very expensive rubbish.

Perhaps if people kept more of the money they earned there wouldn't be such a need to borrow - is there a commitment to a reduction in personal taxation on the horizon?

One of the biggest debts in the country is tuition fees loans - care to commit to abolish fees Mr Cameron?

What protection will you put in place to stop unscrupulous debt collectors harrassing and frightening people who are in debt and need support not threats?

So, a good step forward, but take it further. Face down the big banks and offer a real commitment to help people who are in debt.

10 Things I would Never Do

Paul has tagged me again - this time with the Iain Dale challenge of coming up with ten things I would never do.

In no particular order

1. Vote BNP
2. Bungee Jump
3. Take illegal drugs
4. Audition for the X-Factor - could live without the humiliation, I know I can't sing
5. Work for the Conservative Party (again!)
6. Eat celery - it is indeed Devil's food
7. Live without books - a week in the Big Brother house would be hell for so many reasons, but mostly because I couldn't read
8. Become a vegetarian - love meat and could never be that smug
9. EVER, EVER, EVER willingly carry an ID card
10. Say never to most things - including one or two of the above.....

Again, I won't tag anyone but let me know if you take part.

My Birthday Meme

Paul has tagged me with this meme based on my birthday.

1) Go to Wikipedia
2) In the search box, type your birth month and day but not the year.
3) List three events that happened on your birthday
4) List two important birthdays and one death
5) One holiday or observance (if any)

So I did

Three Notable Events

1170 - Thomas Becket murdered in Canterbury Cathedral
1845 - Texas is admitted as the 28th US State (yee-haw)
1937 - The Irish Free State replaced by a new state called Ireland with the adoption of a new constitution

Two Important Birthdays

1721 - Madame de Pompadour, mistress of King Louis XV of France
1808 - Andrew Johnson, 17th President of the United States

One Notable Death

1916 - Grigory Rasputin, the mad, virtually unkillable Russian monk


Fouth day of Christmas
Optional memorial of said Thomas Becket

I enjoyed that one - as always I won't tag anyone, but interested to know if anyone else participates and what results are.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Lookie Likies

News reaches us that a photofit of Jack the Ripper has been released.

Is it just me or is there a real similarity here?

Friday, November 17, 2006

Casino Royale Review

Went to see the new James Bond film last night.

Fantastic - can't recommend it highly enough. Fast-paced, exciting, funny but not camp, and has Daniel Craig. What more could a girl ask for?

Did Daniel Craig make a good Bond? Absolutely, he was tough, ruthless, witty, handsome (so handsome). He stared a bit much for my liking, I think it was supposed to be steely, but when he smiles oooohhh......

Look out though for the most blatant ever product placement in a script. There was a collective snort throughout the cinema it was so bad.Judi Dench is M. Perhaps the best actress working in Britain today. With her, Craig and other cast members all performing fantastically this was perhaps the best acted Bond film ever.

The best Bond ever? Dunno - I still like Goldfinger, with the best ever line from a Bond movie - "You expect me to talk? No Mr Bond, I expect you to die". Casino Royale is up there though.

Go see! And then all your Daniel Craig nay-sayers eat your words. Bond is here for another good few films yet.

Tory MP Faces Deselection

James Gray, MP for North Wiltshire, may face deselection after leaving his wife. More here.

He is whining on about always having been a good MP and can't understand why this has happened. He's right, marriages break up all the time, people have affairs all the time and it's sad but it doesn't affect their ability to do a good job. I think that what members of the local association have found unpalatable is the fact that despite carrying on an affair while his wife was suffering from cancer, he still had the hypocrisy to stand up in a church and ask people to pray for his wife during the 2005 election campaign.

If you use your family as a political tool then you have to be prepared to face the consequences when the reality isn't the same as the perfection you portray. And if you are prepared to use your ill wife as a vote-getting exercise while you're sleeping someone elses wife, certainly don't be surprised when people tell you that they don't want to be represented by a liar and a cheat.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

More Bizarre Searches

The latest strange search to lead here is

"how many people choke to death on nerds"

I'm afraid I don't have the answer, but when you put the question into google, this is the first site that comes up. Ironically, the first story it leads you to is my last comment about bizarre searches.

I don't understand it, but it amuses me greatly.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Idiotic Questions #337

At the Thameslink Station at King's Cross there are always people trying to sell you something - today it was health insurance (I think!) The salesman's sharp opening gambit to me as I was trying to get home at 5 o'clock was "Excuse me, when you get your glasses, do you buy them?"

Next time I will answer, out loud and not just mumbling as normal "Naw, I steal them. Got a thriving sideline in spectacle theft from Dolland & Aitchison."

Seriously, 5 o'clock on a grotty Monday evening when I just want to get home, I really can't be doing with idiot questions.

Me Cookie Monster

From Kerron

You Are Cookie Monster

Misunderstood as a primal monster, you're a true hedonist with a huge sweet tooth.

You are usually feeling: Hungry. Cookies are preferred, but you'll eat anything if cookies aren't around.

You are famous for: Your slightly crazy eyes and usual way of speaking

How you life your life: In the moment. "Me want COOKIE!"

The big question though - which Avenue Q Character would I be? Someone has to come up with a quiz for that one....

Red Road

Congratulations to everyone involved in the film Red Road which did so well at the Scottish Baftas last night. I haven't been to see it yet, but I do intend to - for the first 25 years of my life I lived right across the road from the flats - except I was in the posh "block" houses.

The one thing that's confusing me a bit is the description of the flats - notorious. I don't know why they are notorious. Apparently they are. But I've never noticed it. It's funny, people look on other's lives and backgrounds and make judgements, but the people who live that life never make those same jusgements. You hear often people saying they didn't realise they were deprived until someone told them they were - that was just their life. Same with me, I never knew until now I live in a notorious area. It was just home.

Friday, November 10, 2006

My Birthday Tune

First seen at Jo's blog

The number one record when I was born was - Bohemian Rhapsody, Queen. Cool.

Find out yours here and let me know.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Pet Peeve

Why do, people insist on, using so many commas, throughout their writing, in totally, inappropriate places? Grrrr

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Celeb Spotting-Tastic

I'm such a A-list star spotter.

Monday night at King's Cross there was Don Warrington once of Rising Damp, now of Grumpy Old Men.

Then yesterday at King's Cross again, Suranne Jones ex of Corrie, looking very pretty it must be said.

Beat that Chris House.