Friday, April 23, 2004
Saint George's Day
Today is Saint George's day. The English flag is the St George's cross. He's popularly identified with England and English ideals of honour, bravery and gallantry and of course the political right identify with him as a national hero. Here's some truth about the guy though.. he wasn't English at all. He was born sometime in the 3rd century in Cappadocia (an area which is now Turkey) so he looked more like the tanned guy who does your kebabs than an arian or brettonian. Also he never even visited England. He left Cappodecia and went to live in Palestine.. a some point he joined the Roman army -yes the roman army which invaded england some years back.. Anyway his parents (back in Cappodecia) were christian -I think I once read that one of them was probably a palestinian in fact. After he quit the roman army he protested against Rome's persecution of Christians and was imprisoned and tortured for his troubles. He was eventually beheaded at Lydda, in Palestine. Apparently he stayed true to his faith. At some point he was beautified then canonised (that means made a saint by a Pope). The Syrian church was quite keen on him back in the 4th century In 1222 April the 23rd was named Saint George's Day.
He is patron saint not only of England but also of Aragon, Catalonia, Georgia, Lithuania, Palestine, Portugal, Germany and Greece; and of Moscow, Istanbul, Genoa and Venice (second to St Mark). He's also patron saint of soldiers, archers, cavalry and chivalry, farmers and field workers, riders and saddlers, and of those suffering from leprosy, plague and syphilis. -Why?
He was popularised over here during the crusades but contrary to popular belief he wasn't a crusader at all. I very much doubt he could've passed for european with his undenialable middleeastern credentials. I also doubt he was called George either. He's not only a christian figure either.. the muslims call him El Khidr and also revere his memory.
Here's his bestest story ever:
The most famous Saint George story is the one about a killing a dragon it became popular in 1265 it goes like this.. there was a dragon (yeah ok.. well some sources say a serpent) living in a lake (or a cave) in Libya or Beirut (not Wiltshire or Essex you notice). It was said to eat 2 sheep in single day and had defeated whole armies which were sent against it ('cos yeah who wouldn't sacrifice an army to save a couple of sheep).
Here's the good bit: when mutton was scarce the local villages would draw lots and send maidens instead of sheep for the creature to eat -why maidens!? Had they run out of goats, camels, gazelles or whatever else lives out there?
One day a princess (one of the villages had a princess?) was going to be fed to the dragon and by chance this was the same day our lad George heard about the dragon. Crossing himself he rode into battle and dealt the dragon a single blow of his lance and his horse then trampled the creature -ok his horse is trampling a creature that's been defeating armies (armies of munchkins presumably?). For this great act the local king (well if one of the villages has a princess they can have a king too) gave him a hefty reward -which (get this) he gave to the poor, he then gave a sermon and the local people were so impressed that thousands converted to christianity (how big was this village?)
My own alternative interpretation is: There was a snake bothering livestock, George stuck it with a stick to impress some farmer's daughter, his horse stamped the injured reptile to death, the farmer paid George for the job, George gambled it away then left, probably cursing.
posted by martin 14:21
Wednesday, April 21, 2004
Addiction and the dissafected
Read an interesting article aboutaddiction and social dissafectation. Apparently people are more likely to become addicted to things when they are socially dissatisfied and lose their addictions when they're in a happy place. There's more on it in this article too. Well I thought it was interesting anyway...
France has just booted out an algerian imam for advocatng wife beating. Read about it here. I would've thought islam had had enough bad press recently without people like him. Imagine if your local priest or vicar was telling the congregation the bible says wife beating is ok.. I think he'd be excommunicated before he could say "hail mary".
posted by martin 13:41
Went training last night, Kung Fu, just 2 of us. Whilst the club is so poorly attended (down to 4 regulars!) it's a chance for us to brush up on basics and try to standardise parts of the syllabus. The style underwent some changes a few years back so the other two instructors both do things slightly differently - I wound up learning both ways which was a bit of a ballache at times. Looks like the senior instuctor is calling it a day, he hasn't trained for a few months :( The club is slightly in limbo at the moment, we haven't advertised for new students yet and both Phil and myself preferred being able to choose whether to train or not on a daily basis which you can only do if there's another instructor who will always be here. My knee is still painfull from when I fell back in January, guess I'll have to see my doctor about it afterall.
Got a text from Spencer yesterday, haven't seen him out for ages. He's not been to the usual club since before xmas =:O Wonder what (or who..) he's been doing all this time.. Got a call at work from Laura with a belated Happy Birthday too. She's still dealing with all the foreigners and is looking forward to meeting her first slovak -or is the word slav?
Julie popped round after training, the evening shot by and we wound up eating just before midnight. Found out how much the bursary is for studyng what I'm considering, it's more than I'd expected but not really enough to live off.. at least not the way I'm living at the moment. Need to think some more.. don't want to get loans.. might stick to IT -it's dull but the cash isn't too bad..
posted by martin 11:03
Monday, April 19, 2004
It happened again
I'm another year older! I share my birthday with the original untouchable, Eliot Ness and inebriated comedian Dudley Moore.
Spent this weekend in, Julie's on Friday mine on Saturday. Did something very middle aged on Saturday afternoon.. dragged J to a garden centre to get some plants. I don't think I'm quite in carpet slippers Sunday papers territory yet though. Went to see my folks on Sunday. My brother presented me with a card containing a betting slip with £2 on someone to win a snooker contest. Never seen a betting slip before. Never been into a bookies either, lets hope the bloke wins so I can do that!
Julie got me a lava lamp! Something I've wanted for years but never got round to furnishing myself with, Blink 182's recent CD, Blink 182, a book on penis puppetry -I kid you not. These two guys do a stage show where they turn their parts into erm things ranging from pelicans to burgers, they've released this book showing you how to do the same with yours... Pretty gross really, still it could something to show the grandchildren someday. She also got me a keyring with some little handcuffs on it. I'd already told her that I didn't expect her to get me anything and all I really wanted was to wake up with her this morning unfortunately my birthday falls on a Monday this year so I was working and J was on an early so we had to get up at 06:30.. so nice that she did :)
posted by martin 16:15
Friday, April 16, 2004
Nearly the weekend! Walking home last night, as a single decker bus went by I noticed a waving hand I looked up saw Laura sticking her tongue out at me. I returned the insult, she hopped off the bus and we had a natter. Some nutty woman has put in a complaint about her at work because she said to her something really inexcusable.. terrible in fact.. I think the phrase was "Hallo, can I help you?" Shocking stuff. Care in the community eh.. Aside from that she was quite pleased with herself having been out on a date last week.
Went to Julie's she was a bit unhappy with the world, having seen some black guy being pushed and insulted by a local couple at the bus station. She was more dissapointed that none of the hullmen waiting for buses nearby did anything about it. I went round with a hug and some ice cream. On the plus side she's not taking the forensic job in manchester, just yet. The logic behind her staying in her current post seems to make sense.
Got an email from Sarah in Australia, she's been getting strange emails. Someone is distributing the Netsky virus using her addresses -I've had the same thing with my hotmail account and 2 people at work had it with their work addresses too.. Works been a bit slow recently so I've given this page and my homepage a bit of a smartening up.
posted by martin 16:02
Wednesday, April 14, 2004
Been acting my age last night. Did a spot of gardening. Yup gardening.
Gave the grass it's first cut of the year. It'll need doing weekly for the whole summer. Looks a bit scraggy at the mo but I'm sure it'll recover. Pulled the dead bits of old plants out and pruned the living bits. Looks much tidier now. One end of the garden seems to have been designated the cat toilet and whatever I plant there dies from the acidity -or from being uprooted by feline diggers. This year I'll try to get some advice on what to plant there, I'd like it at least hidden from view. I'm not about to start watching Friday night gardening programs just yet though.
Thinking about job changes (again).. looks like if I did retrain it'd have to be something in the NHS so I got my tuition fees paid. could I get by for 3 years as a student again though.. tricky one. I'm used to financial freedom at the moment need to weigh that up against an interesting job. Problem with IT thugh is a year or two out of it o try something else is enough time for your knowledge to be outdated as regards the IT jobmarket. Tricky one.. I'll just coast along a few months more before making any decisions.
posted by martin 16:20
Sunday, April 11, 2004
Julie got old! er..
On Friday I went round to visit Colin and Becky. We wound up walking the dogs in some field on the edge of cott. Dogs may be some man's best friend but they sure aren't his brightest. Popped round to Donna and Matt's too for a cuppa and to get them out that night.
Went to the Hogshead with J, met up with Billy, Mike, Donna and Andy then headed off to the Piper. This was the first night of my "not gonna get so wrecked phase", went OK. Stuck to lager, still wound up drunk enough to have a dance to a couple of things with J. Later tured out I'd missed some twat trying it on with her when I wasn't around but that's probably for the best I guess, it's not like she can't deal with that stuff afterall. Was a good night, although the music seems to have changed a bit recently, less of the older indie and rock oriented stuff and more modern tunes. I had been wondering what the current batch would be making of some of the old indie stuff they used to pay like the Lemonheads and so on.. missed it myself tho! I won a bottle of Bud in a true/false promo that was running. Today's zoological trivia fact is: all polar bears are actually left handed.
Went back to Julie's where I'd surreptitiously stashed her birthday pressies :) It was getting on for 3am so technically her birthday. Nice to surprise people. Think she liked what I got her, a silver necklace, a CD of Poison's Greatest Hits, and some latex pieces.. One didn't fit but 3 out of 4 is pretty good :) She even liked the 'fetish roses' I'd made with er dried roses, heat shrink tubing and Cat's hairdryer.
Spent Saturday in town, bought some interesting stuff I shan't go into. In the evening we celebrated Julie's birthday at an italian restaurant in town called Viva. The food was excellent, we had a bottle of white wine with the meal -the rather nice but unfortunately named "Suave Classico". There was so much food we had to turn down the owner's offer of a post meal sambuka.
Today we went to The Deep. To be honest it wasn't quite what I was expecting. I'd expected er well a bigger aquarium and less backround noise about the origins of life and so on, afterall that was covered many years ago in school for me. The aquarium bits were pretty cool though with some (admittedly little) sharks, rays, moray eels (I think there were two but it might've been one busy one), and other fishy things, coral and jellyfish. I think the long horned cowfish is probably evolution's idea of a joke, it's worth going just to see them zipping around as you enter. Nice bright yellow box shaped things. Something else we noticed as there were quite a few people there with small kids is that.. well kids seem to be a bit daft but ...y'know they're kids so it's expected but the parents.. it's worrying such fucking thick people are having kids.. hell it surprising such people have sperm that knows which way to swim and were to put it.. The human zoo had some bad exhibits on show today.
Popped down to East Park this afternoon and had a look at the animals and birds. Saw deer, peacocks, 2 kinds of llama, wallabies, rheas, chickens (why?!) and various other birds but to my dissapointment we didn't see any guinea pigs this time :( Then we went back to J's and spent some time going through Anne Hooper's Kama Sutra. Not a straight tranlastion of the original but a modern book with bits of the Kama Sutra, Ananga Ranga, The Perfumed Garden, and The Tao all lumped in.
Just making a copy of Project 1950 by The Misfits. On Saturday we went into a new clothing shop which a mate from Spiders has opened. They were playing it when we went in. It's covers of a load of old rock'n'roll songs, reccomended listening for everyone -and for their parents who probably remember the songs from first time round. It's so good I'm going to put it in the recommended listening column of this site which I've not updated since I put it up.
posted by martin 22:08
Thursday, April 08, 2004
Took yesterday afternoon off from work to go shopping for a birthday present for a lady. Tricky, another hard thing is buying a card. The majority that I saw were either totally unsubtle pub humour or so saccharine sweet and sentimental she'd've been nauseated. I eventually found one not too offensive/gag worthy in the fourth place I tried.
Went training last night. The dojo still smells of creosote and the floor is in the process of being repaired following some cowboy electricians' attentions. I got a text message just after we started training so my phone was playing a reminder tune for almost the whole session. I reckon a few people will be humming it today.
In the evening someone came to look at a single bed I'm selling. It's actually my childhood bed. He was one of those people who buys and lets houses. Needs the bed for a new property he's furnishing. He also wanted to buy my house too, the sum he mentioned was just over three times what I got the place for... but I'm going to hang on to it. It could be a handy second income if I move out and get more lodgers in.
Visited J after karate, she'd been out with the girls from work and was what I'd call comfortably merry, very merry in fact. Very cute tho, the huge grin of the happily pished... Shame about having to get up this morning. I'm trying to sort out my circadian rhythm the slacker way. The plan is to follow Julie's in the hope that my sleeping pattern falls into step. The only problem is I've opted for someone who works shifts and odd nights so I've had a couple of early nights and a couple of early mornings, sure it's all good for me though. Left to my own devices I'd be nocturnal.
posted by martin 10:34
Monday, April 05, 2004
Back from Consent or as it's now called "The Curious Club". Had a bit of trouble finding a hotel room in Preston but managed to get one really close to the club. Unfortunately this place put the "rot" in grot it was really dilapidated. The room was bright pink. The carpet was another shade of pink. The room had a suspended ceiling decorated with damp patches. There was a shower in the corner -no extractor fan though. The double glazed window unit was full of condensation.. strange. There wasn't an onsuite loo or bath, they were across the hall. I checked into the place before heading over to Julie's in Lancaster. She wasn't impressed with the place.. I've stayed in worse places myself but she hadn't. I decided to take a bath -just to show J it wasn't as bad as it looked. It was tho. There was no plug. I had to hunt all over the hotel to find one that fitted. Turns out the place has one plug between three baths. Nice. I noticed the bath had moved away from the wall on two sides and didn't like to imagine what may be lurking in the gaps.
We got to the club after nearly going into the wrong place -well it was on the same street. Jeremy, Gonzo, Laura and a girl called Naomi made it just after us. Julie looked amazing with her catsuit and thigh boots. A guy asked me if he could approach her to walk on him, I said best not to. I thought it was funny someone asking if he could borrow my girlfriend. He didnt really need to ask me anyway, if he''d just just asked her directly she'd've probably acquiesced. We differ in that she doesn't think of that kind of stuff as being sexual. The guy went off and got trodden on by someone else anyway. At one point he happily had three girls stood on him.
The inflatable deep sea diver from the previous time was out, think he must be a regular fixture. Didn't have a proper look at the sceners this time, they were just setting up. There was a couple of stalls, one showing footwear and one from a steel working firm with various things like manacles, restrainers, spreader bars, a wierd mask, whips and a really tiny cage that someone sat in.
I wound up a bit under the influence and er fell off the bed back in the hotel. Decided to knock that on the head. Shan't be out much this month anyway it's been a bit hectic the past two weekends.
posted by martin 17:56
Saturday, April 03, 2004
Got woken up by a second call at half four, same girl, turned out she was fine just drunk and fancied a chat. Also got woken up by two alarms I'd forgotten to turn off, the cat, the postman with a parcel and a call from an aunt to get me out of bed to go lug furniture. Did that, acquired a dining table and some chairs in the process. Not sure If I'll keep them yet though. Looking forward to this evening. See if I can get to Lancaster without a speeding ticket..
posted by martin 13:40
Just got home from Spiders. Fairly drunk. Sally went off home alone. Hope she was ok.Billy tried to find her in the car but we couldn't see her.. I'm sure she'll have got a taxi. Got a mixed up call from a female friend. Couldn't understand much. She sounded drunk and I think upset, needed someone to talk to. When I called her back later her walls were up so I couldn't tell what was going on. She'd been to the Piper and I think left on her own. Not good. Shit now I'm going to worry about that tonight and feel bad for not picking up on things on the first call.
Earlier in Spiders I sent J a text, missing her alot since she left. Seems to be mutual which is a good thing. No matter how much i'm going to worry about when she gets her forensic job (which I do know and accept will happen) I'm sure she'll be worth it. Think she was a bit drunk, she'd been out with Gonzo, I thought she was going to hit a club but apparently not. i also figured she'd go to Jeremys bar but I get he impresson she didn't go there either. Missing her like a limb. Gonna see her tomorrow though -can't wait. Need to sleep to reach tomorrow faster.
posted by martin 03:35
Friday, April 02, 2004
Life goes on
Well the inevitable is drawing nearer. Julie's interested in a job over in Manchester.. in a forensic unit. That means working with headfucked people who've done very bad things. And her living in Manchester. Shes not 100% sure she's going to go for it, needs to see what the place is like first. I'm pretty sure she'll get the position if she does apply though. Not sure what I think really. On the one hand I'd really hate to be the anchor holding her in a job that she doesn't enjoy in a city she doesn't like.. on the other hand I'm gonna be worried sick when she's working with psychos and sickos all day -and that's before I even think abut the geography. Even if she doesn't apply for this job I know full well the day will come when she does get a forensic post somewhere, and I know it won't be in Hull. Fuck fuck fuck. Well if she likes the place I honestly do hope she gets the post, care too much be selfish about it. The fact I'll be coming second fiddle to job (yet again) is not lost on me. I'm also aware that I'm putting a relationhip in front of friends, cats, home, training, a secure job and the lifestyle I'd lose. Just when you think life's finished kicking you in the teeth the hammer comes out. hmph. I'll offer encouragement, and mean it, but I have misgivings too. I'll deal with it as it happens. There's nothing else I can do. Life goes on, the trick is not to get left behind.
I'm going to break one of my personal rules tonight. The one about never drinking at home alone. There's some Carling in the fridge. There won't be tomorrow.
hmm thinking about tomorrow.. it'll be Friday, nearly at Saturday when after helping an aunt shift some furniture I'll be zipping off to Lancaster to meet the girl at the centre of my little world. Happy thoughts are entering my supercynical head. Just need to get through tomorrow quickly and I'm there.
posted by martin 01:07
Thursday, April 01, 2004
Spent this evening sorting out a washing machine. I'd bought a replacement on Sunday before last. The delivery guy phoned me at work this morning with a delivery time so I could let him in. He was 40 minutes late. Nice one White Arrow. Anyway disconnected the old one and connected the new jobbie. When I pulled out the old machine I found about 5 packets of chewing gum underneath it. They'll have been left out by me, claimed as cat toys and promptly lost under the machine.
Gave Richard and Vicky a buzz. Congratulated Vicky on giving birth to a son on Wednesday. James Henry Dee. I could hear him in the background as we were talking. Really strange. They're the second couple of mates from my school days to have had a baby. It's a bit hard to get my head round it. Rossy and Sarah gave birth last year but that was over in Australia so I've not really spoken to them outside of email. Vicky was sure she knows who the next pair to have kids will be, I think she's right but after them we're stumped nobody else is in the right stage or mindset to have children. I really can't imagine being in that situation at all. Scary to contemplate.
Gave Billy a buzz as well. He filled me in on a couple of things I'd missed. Seems the rumour mill was a bit active about myself and a certain lady a few weeks back. Nothing exciting.. we're supposed to have been arguing alot at some point. Strange. He'd figured it was bull when he heard it anyway. Well it's a departure from the usual rumours that go around. Wonder how these things start.. Just read back on my blog a few weeks. No hints in there. Seems I ramble though. Ah well shan't miss any sleep over it. If I started a rumour I think I'd do better than make believe dissent. I'd probably invent some bizzare sexual thing possibly involving goldfish, tiramisu and straps. Hmm I might kickstart that one myself it's sounding pretty good already.
Finished building the second PC and networked it to my main one so two people can go on the internet at once. Now Cat and I can chat via MSN as if we're in the same room -which we will be.. Just need to do some network drive mappings on it to make it as close to using the main PC as possible and then go through the tedious task of applying the various Micro$oft updates, hotfixes, security patches, service packs, post service pack patches and other kludges.
Nearly had a bump with one of those 4x4 school-run-specials this morning, the type that's all deerbars and high suspension. The driver seemed prepared to quite happily turn right and plow into my vehicle. Was quite a near thing really. Saw the aftermath of a car crash yesterday evening. After training. A police car on Ferensway and a stretcher being put in an ambulance. Not sure what happened. I only saw one car. It was a small white one with a mashed up front driverside wing. The drivers door was all battered from an impact and the window glass was gone. There was a wide line of blood down the outside of the door. Guess it must've been pretty nasty. Just before I drove past a fire engine pulled away so I think they must've had to cut someone free. Been thinking about it today.
On a another note I got nice goodnight a text from Julie tonight :) with that in mind I'll hit the sack in a happy mood.
posted by martin 01:51