For Old Times Sake
It's all been said and hardly read. :
It's all been said and hardly read. :
You are viewing the most recent 25 entries.
15th November 2007
For Old Times Sake
It's all been said and hardly read. :
16th April 2004
The following is an excerpt from the July 1943 issue of Transportation Magazine. :
This was serious and written for male supervisors of women in the work force during World War II - a mere 58 years ago! Obviously, the intent was not to be "funny" but by today's standards, it is amusing to say the least! For those of you with efficiency issues, pay particular attention to #8.
ELEVEN TIPS ON GETTING MORE EFFICIENCY OUT OF WOMEN EMPLOYEES
There's no longer any question whether transit companies should hire women for jobs formerly held by men. The draft and manpower shortage has settled that point. The important things now are to select the most efficient women available and how to use them to the best advantage. Here are eleven helpful tips on the subject from Western Properties:
Pick young married women. They usually have more of a sense of responsibility than their unmarried sisters, they're less likely to be flirtatious, they need the work or they wouldn't be doing it, they still have the pep and interest to work hard and to deal with the public efficiently.
When you have to use older women, try to get ones who have worked outside the home at some time in their lives. Older women who have never contacted the public have a hard time adapting themselves and are inclined to be cantankerous and fussy. It's always well to impress upon older women the importance of friendliness and courtesy.
General experience indicates that "husky" girls - those who are just a little on the heavy side - are more even tempered and efficient than their underweight sisters.
Obtain a physician to give each woman you hire a special physical examination - one covering female conditions. This step not only protects the property against the possibilities of lawsuit, but reveals whether the employee-to-be has any female weaknesses which would make her mentally or physically unfit for the job.
Stress at the outset the importance of time - the fact that a minute or two lost here and there makes serious inroads on schedules. Until this point is gotten across, service is likely to be slowed up.
Give the female employee a definite day-long schedule of duties so that they'll keep busy without bothering the management for instructions every few minutes. Numerous properties say that women make excellent workers when they have their jobs cut out for them, but that they lack initiative in finding work themselves.
Whenever possible, let the inside employee change from one job to another at some time during the day. Women are inclined to be less nervous and happier with change.
Give every girl an adequate number of rest periods during the day. You have to make some allowances for feminine psychology. A girl has more confidence and is more efficient if she can keep her hair tidied, apply fresh lipstick and wash her hands several times a day.
Be tactful when issuing instructions or in making criticisms. Women are often sensitive; they can't shrug off harsh words the way men do. Never ridicule a woman - it breaks her spirit and cuts off her efficiency.
Be reasonably considerate about using strong language around women. Even though a girl's husband or father may swear vociferously, she'll grow to dislike a place of business where she hears too much of this.
Get enough size variety in operator's uniforms so that each girl can have a proper fit. This point can't be stressed too much in keeping women happy.
It's twenty years since he died but he can still make you chuckle. :
7th April 2004
I may be grasping at straws, but.....
I'm quite ashamed about the pleasure I experience through Arsenal's misfortunes. I am quite clear why I like to see them come undone; it's because they are a bunch of foreign mercenaries with no real attachment to the fans - fans who are happy to embrace them as Arsenal. The same might be said for Chelsea, except their manager is more personable and they do have a rich seam of local lads in the side; both goals last night were scored by Londoners, and another, Terry, was Bobby Moore-like in defence. :
But I am most excited by the prospect of a fascinating climax to the season. Have the wheels come off Arsenal again to the extent that they will completely fold now? I am amazed that their manager has twice said to the media this week that he fears they will win nothing. What kind of a message is that to his fragile frenchmen?
Will Chelsea over-reach themselves trying to secure two trophies?
Easter weekend will give us some of the answers, and I can't wait.
30th March 2004
Men - Who needs them?
Men are going to be biologically surplus to requirements. I think that's ok with me and I'd be interested to know how most men feel about it. :
We won't ever be surplus to requirements full stop. The majority of women will still want a man in their lives for sex, furniture shifting, protection (aggression works for you as well as against you), decoration (not decorating - decoration!), inventions, design, art, literature, architecture and imagination.
When it comes to procreation how many men drive that? A man might like the idea of a son and heir but in reality is just as happy with his mates and has to be dragged into fatherhood and responsibility. Does every father look at the kids he's raising and wonder whether he can see any genetic resemblance?
And since most women are going to want to keep us around they will probably just as soon have us fertilise them by the traditional method; that way they can secure the child support and maintenance in the future.
I'm being ultra-cynical but generally, don't you agree ladies?
29th March 2004
About Time Too
I have a clock in the bedroom, which projects an image of the time on the ceiling. It also projects the room temperature but there’s something wrong with that, because hot though I am in bed, I’m not that hot. :
It might sound a bit sad having the time projected on the ceiling but it’s quite practical when you wake up in the dark and wonder what time it is; I don’t even have to move my head. It also keeps time by radio signal and is always accurate.
I woke up on Sunday morning and it said 7.30am. I felt tired, as though I’d been robbed of sleep and the feeling lasted all day, I soon discovered that the hour had gone on and I HAD been robbed of sleep. It was the first time I can remember not having seen or heard any reminders about the clocks going on. We usually wait until we get up on the Sunday before adjusting ourselves and our clocks to the new time. But techno-time waits for no man.
22nd March 2004
Thirty reasons why men have 2 dogs and not 2 wives
1. The later you are, the more excited they are to see you. :
2. Dogs will forgive you for playing with other dogs.
3. If a dog is gorgeous, other dogs don't hate it.
4. Dogs don't notice if you call them by another dog's name.
5. A dog's disposition stays the same all month long.
6. Dogs like it if you leave a lot of things on the floor.
7. A dog's parents never visit.
8. Dogs do not hate their bodies.
9. Dogs agree that you have to raise your voice to get your point across.
10. Dogs like to do their snooping outside rather than in your wallet or desk.
11. Dogs seldom outlive you.
12. Dogs can't talk.
13. Dogs enjoy petting in public.
14. You never have to wait for a dog; they're ready to go 24-hours a day.
15. Dogs find you amusing when you're drunk.
16. Dogs like to go hunting and fishing.
17. Another man will seldom steal your dog.
18. If you bring another dog home, your dog will happily play with both of you.
19. A dog will not wake you up at night to ask, "If I died would you get another dog?"
20. If you pretend to be blind, your dog can stay in your hotel room for free.
21. If a dog has babies, you can put an ad in the paper and give them away.
22. A dog will let you put a studded collar on it without calling you a pervert.
23. A dog won't hold out on you to get a new car.
24. If a dog smells another dog on you, they don't get mad, they just think it's interesting.
25. On a car trip, your dog never insists on running the heater.
26. Dogs don't let magazine articles guide their lives.
27. When your dog gets old, you can have it put to sleep.
28. Dogs like to ride in the back of a pickup truck.
29. Dogs are not allowed in exclusive clothes shops.
And last........ but not least:
30. If a dog leaves, it won't take half of your stuff
11th March 2004
I was hughely encouraged to read that the Higgs boson particle may actually exist at a mass of around 115 gigaelectronvolts (GeV to you). :
Physicists have observed 16 particles that make up all matter under the Standard Model of fundamental particles and interactions.
But the sums do not quite add up for the Standard Model to be true if these particles are considered alone. If only 16 particles existed, they would have no mass - contradicting what we know to be true in nature.
Another particle has to give them this mass. Enter the Higgs boson, first proposed by University of Edinburgh physicist Peter Higgs and colleagues in the late 1960s.
Their theory was that all particles acquire their mass through interactions with an all-pervading field, called the Higgs field, which is carried by the Higgs boson.
The Higgs' importance to the Standard Model has led some to dub it the "God particle".
I think we will all sleep easier in our beds when the little blighter has been finally tied down.
9th March 2004
a couple of thoughts.......
My job has never been the most important part of my life. But working, or at least being in employment probably has been as important as anything else to me, because work means self-esteem; for me it does anyway. :
The other equally important strand of my life has been marriage; I don’t know whether I have just been lucky or maybe I instinctively knew what I needed in a partner for marriage to work. It is more likely that because it has been equally important to both of us we have made sure it worked for us. We got married in a Register Office, she wore black, we honeymooned in a tent. We never said so, but our wedding was a statement that marriage is about your life together not about an event.
I was wondering which would hit me hardest; the breakdown of my marriage or unemployment, but having written this I know the answer. I would find another job if I had to.
2nd March 2004
this made me cry
Tears of laughter :
The retirement and emmigration of my old friend prompted another old, mutual friend to contact me and with our partners we met for a drink at the weekend. We were soon reminded why we don't really keep in touch; Al is so boring to be with and his partner is no better. It was a long evening. He has always been sycophantic and he hasn't changed; he spoke in awe and reverence about a photograph he framed for David and Victoria (Beckham), but to him it was David and Victoria. :
The story is worth relating though, because it is quite funny and confirmed one or two rumours about the pair. The photo was a large portrait of them, head and shoulders, kissing. It was brought by their agent to Al who framed it and it was delivered to the Beckhams' Cheshire home. A few days later it was returned to Al via their agent who said they didn't want it hanging portrait, but landscape. Al looked at the fixings on the back and saw that someone - probably DB had tried to reposition the hangers and had made a right old mess, using sellotape and blue-tack. Al asked; if it was to be hung landscape, who should be on top? The agent said Victoria, as she is the dominant partner. So that's how it ended up on their staircase wall. It took Al about half an hour to tell that tale.
41. Who do you miss right now?
Amy, Teeann, Veronica, Frances. :
I would say Sara but she's dead and I find it harder to miss someone who is gone for good, definitely - no way back.
If any of you read this.............I miss you ;-).
27th February 2004
the passion of the christ
I've been following the controversy over this film during the past few months whilst it was being made. I have a strong interest in Christianity, because it is the great western religion and is so powerful. I am most interested in verifiable, contemporary historical fact. There is plenty of good recorded history from the years during which Jesus was alive, so I was interested that although Mel Gibson said he consulted historians and scholars over language, clothes and events, he is being criticised for inaccuracy. So I did some research myself to try to find out just how well documented the crucifixion is; and it isn't, which is very disappointing to me. The cool, dispassionate, secular view is that the gospel stories are an embroidery of some bare facts - i.e. that a rabbi called Jesus was tortured and executed by the authorities because he was considered to be seditious; nothing new or different about that. The rest is religion. :
24th February 2004
An old friend of mine retired a week or two back. I haven't seen him for about six years, but he and his wife put on their christmas card this year that from early February they would be living in the south of France, where he's had a small house for quite a few years. The day before his birthday, which was the date of their move, I got a large brown envelope in the post from him, returning some photos he'd come across whilst clearing his house. They were my pics which he'd had in his possession for thirty five years, mostly of my twenty first birthday. It was spooky to see myself, my friends and my family as we all were then; nice though. We'll probably spend a few days with them over there later in the year. :
I live a quiet, fairly solitary life these days, it's the way I like it and the way I want it. But sometimes I get drawn into events and occasions which it would be rude to snub; thankfully those occasions are few and far between. Except this month. Not only have I had to attend several parties, but they have all been surprise parties for colleagues; two of them for the same retiring colleague and two of them on consecutive evenings last weekend - It feels as though I'm working a twelve day stretch. It's been very stressful and I'm glad it's nearly all over - I have one more evening out this weekend before I can get back to being a recluse. :
23rd February 2004
bloody crystal balls
ok, so it wasn't quite as predicted but there's still time; it's running out, but hope springs eternal, or at least until it's mathematically impossible. :
18th February 2004
It's a little hazy...becoming clearer now.......
This is how I see it - how I want it to be: Chelsea, hungry for vengeance for their cup defeat, bring Arsenal's unbeaten run to an end at Stamford Bridge this weekend. Meanwhile Man U overcome their jitters and Leed's desperate determination and win at Old Trafford. This will leave United two points behind Arsenal with the game at Highbury to come. United will beat Arsenal at Highbury to lead the premiership by one point, a lead they will maintain to become champions again. Arsenal and United will both go out of the Champion's League tournament but will meet at the Millenium Stadium in the FA Cup Final. United will win that one too.....'Ave it!!! :
The way we live
I went to a consultation event yesterday, about sustainable energy. A Government driven initiative to make energy efficiency improvements in transport and households by raising public awareness. :
I just don’t think renaming and reorganising the existing network of energy advice centres is going to work; they have been around for ten years and it all leaves the general population cold (pun not intended). People do not want to trade style, convenience, cost, fashion and familiarity for worthiness and eco-friendliness; it doesn’t appeal.
There are only a couple of effective ways to drive life-style change:
1) Technological advances in materials and systems which are logical, irresistible and which capture peoples’ imagination.
2) Legislation to introduce materials and methods into such areas as construction projects to achieve energy efficiency, and transport or industrial processes to reduce pollution.
There is a need for grants and subsidies to help people make changes which are initially costly but which bring economies in the long term. But on the whole the old addage is true: You can take a horse to water but you can’t make him drink – he has to want to.
It's the team that you'll see sitting outside the chippy on a Friday :
night, or driving up and down the High Street in a souped-up Renault
Clio while 50 Cent is blasting out of the speakers. (For those of you
who know Bristol these guys should come from Filton, wear an assortment
of Puffa Jackets, Ben Sherman shirts and tracksuit bottoms and
continuously say "Allll-reeeet my lurver!!!") It's the almighty Scroat
Goalkeeper: Nicky Weaver
Difficult choice to make as the natural scrawny build and hunched
shoulders of the scroat is not exactly conducive to goalkeeping - though
of course you do get the bonus of occasionally wearing a baseball cap.
Weaver makes the side purely because we just couldn't picture Tim Howard
in an altercation at a nightclub though it would be very, very funny)
and there would certainly be no rumours about Jens Lehmann, two women
and a goalkeeping glove. Ouch.
Central Defence: Rio Ferdinand
Scroat points galore for filming himself and his friends having sex with
some holidaying girls in Ayia Napa, more scroat points for getting
caught drink-driving after quaffing alcopops and a big old pile of
scroat points for buying a Cadillac Escalade he saw in a rap video and then getting
himself another ban for speeding. Plus the 8 month ban for drug-taking!
The boy from Peckham made, erm, good - the ultimate scroat.
Central Defence: John Terry
Classy scroat who was part of the Chelsea group whose drunken behaviour
included 'stripping, swearing and vomiting' in a Heathrow hotel full of
American tourists on the night of the September 11 tragedy. Particularly
impressive was the head-first human bowling at a nearby ten-pin centre.
Was also charged with, but eventually cleared of, assault on a bouncer
in a west London club.
Central Defender: Jamie Carragher
Possibly the Scousest man in England, but it is not just this which
earns him a place in the Scroat XI. Apart from the accent and the scroat
("Wha?") face is the tale of the stripper who was covered in whipped
cream and paraded around by Carragher (dressed as the Hunchback of Notre
Dame) at a Liverpool Xmas party. Reports do not detail whether Quasimodo
was wearing a Burberry cap.
Central Midfield: Lee Bowyer
Just watch a video of him running up to a referee to protest his
innocence for booting someone in the face, running them over in a
souped-up car, whatever - it's pure scroat. This is the man who was
acquitted of an attack on a young lad in Leeds but was found guilty of
wearing black shoes with a metal buckle and no socks. He actually
admitted this in court. Scroat and proud.
Central Midfield: Jody Morris
Looks like a scroat, speaks like a scroat, acts like a scroat - was of
course part of the Chelsea 'stripping, swearing and vomiting'
collective, has a conviction for an assault on a man who questioned his
friend's right to wee in the street and was recently accused of sexual
assault, prompting a succession of 'My love with five-times-a-night
Jody' style exposes with a string of 'models' and 'exotic dancers', one
of which had his name tattooed on her foot. Classy lady.
Right Midfield: Joe Cole
Poor lad just looks like a scroat. He has the classic build, the classic
features and the classic voice. And we're sure the official at the
Reebok Stadium who was subjected to a volley of abuse last year agrees.
Left Midfield: Cristiano Ronaldo
Here we have the rare case of The Foreign Scroat. He's only been around
two minutes and we've already seen him have two ridiculous haircuts (The
Spaghetti and an odd kind of bouffant), get into potential trouble twice
through gestures and abuse and allegedly steal the girlfriend of Leeds'
Alan Smith. Wonder if he can do a step-over in time with Sean Paul...
Striker: Wayne Rooney
Click here for 18 reasons why Rooney is the king of the boy Scroats and
then picture him screaming 'you f*cking c*nt' at a referee with a spotty
face (Rooney, not the referee) or chewing gum at the BBC Sports
Personality of the Year awards with a fat, skewiff tie. Not just the
future of football, but the future of Scroat-ery.
Striker: Robbie Fowler
One from the old-school scroats - who presumably amused scroats
everywhere with his parted bum cheeks gag aimed at Graeme Le Saux. Other
scroat highlights from this veteran include celebrating his first
Liverpool goals by going down the chippy, cutting up Neil Ruddock's £300
Gucci shoes over a wee misunderstanding and revealing that his favourite
chat-up line is "Do you like jewels? You should suck my dick - it's a
Rooney can only dream of being half the scroat Fowler has been.
Striker: Craig Bellamy
Like Bowyer, to watch Bellamy in full vitriolic action is to watch
scroat poetry in motion - the stream-of-consciousness swearing is
definitely the product of nature rather than nurture. Bellamy boasts
the physique as well as the criminal record of the scroat and the ultimate
Scroat accessory? the look of a feral and slightly hungry rodent.
11th February 2004
Everything will be alright
"Oddly, this Grand Narrative divides people who are allies on other matters. Thus, some scientists dislike GM’s* enemies (for being anti-scientific) but would be quite cautious in allowing GM use. This is because they are conventionally “green” in their wariness of messing with nature. In short, they are conflicted. :
Contrariwise, one suspects that most scientist members of the GW* consensus have no difficulty promoting it, and are largely irritated by those contrarians who challenge any part of the consensus view. Few of them are conflicted on the issue.
The green Grand Narrative is accepted by many scientists, along with left-of-centre politics. This is not surprising: they are often public–sector workers, seldom operate as entrepreneurs, and are part of a wider academic culture which is broadly “dissident”. Besides, to be green is even more common than to be left-of-centre: it is the default position of the majority in society (except – and it’s an important caveat – on matters affecting their wallet or convenience)."
GM = genetic modification
GW = global warming
From this very interesting article:
It all leaves me believing that such issues are almost wholly political and the chosen battlegrounds of political extremists with much bigger agendas.
I think the planet will look after itself and the rest of us should not allow ourselves to be alarmed and brow-beaten about it.
5th January 2004
Updated link :
15th December 2003
If you received this with your christmas card my cover is blown :-).
F said. “You wouldn’t fancy writing a round-robin would you, to put in with the Christmas cards?” I said. ”Oh bother” But then I reconsidered and decided I could at least give people an idea of who we are and what we are doing these days. :
Well, up until a few weeks ago we still had all three of our off-spring living with us. M and S had both been away to university in Leeds and Newcastle respectively, and I was naïve enough to think we only had to lever C out, then start looking for that little cottage, anticipating years of peace and quiet. But they came back.
M has a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and is working in Liverpool, commuting daily. His girlfriend had to go to Yeovil to find suitable work and M is driving down there most weekends at the moment.
S graduated with a BA in English Literature and is working for a recruiting agency until next spring when she is going touring around Europe with her boyfriend. When I asked her friends what they were going to do now they’d graduated, they all said they were going to work until the spring then go touring around Europe with their boyfriends.
C is a CAD technician with a firm of land surveyors and has recently got a house with his girlfriend. That’s my boy, leading by example.
F went to a reunion of Manchester High School for Girls’ Class of ’72 in January: Housewives, social workers, teachers, doctors, barristers, airline pilots and most interestingly I think, Merlyn Lowther, the person who signs all our bank notes; that must be very time consuming. I remember Merlyn; she had brains, beauty and was good at sports. It’s not right, really.
In June F spent a drunken, sunny long weekend in the Cotswolds with three of the girls she met up with at the reunion; they plan to make it an annual event. Hey!! I’ve seen the photos of the girls – I just don’t know who took them.
F is still a very busy service manager for a Manchester charity and I’m still working as a housing surveyor in local government, thinking more and more about retirement.
We celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary at the beginning of September and went to the opera festival in Verona – which was quite wonderful; before that, in June we spent six days walking the southern half of Offa’s Dyke Path and that was every bit as memorable; lost in The Marches, communing with nature.
We are all fit and well and looking forward to 2004.
Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
I was just watching the sunrise at 8.00am. At least I was watching the sky to the north- west as the sun rose somewhere behind me in the east. The sky turned from a uniform grey to a very pale blue with pink-grey patches of cloud. A plane left a vapour trail which in the growing light looked like dark grey smoke; I can’t work out why that should be so when the clouds were already pink tinged. Now the ground and the trees take on their colour, the field through the trees still frost whitened. :
F asked me to write an enclosure for the Christmas cards. I hate those things when we receive them; it’s usually the mothers writing about their little darlings’ achievements and generally bragging about wonderful houses, jobs and lives. So I said I’d do it if I could be more straightforward and honest. F agreed and I wrote something I was quite pleased with. The trouble is, I haven’t slept at all well since we posted the cards.
I might post it on here and invite opinions.
12th December 2003
It was October and the Indians on a remote reservation 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.
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 "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 ever.”
“How can you be so sure?” the Chief asked.
The weatherman replied, “The Indians are collecting firewood like crazy.
11th December 2003
reasons to be cheerful
I left my glasses at home this morning. I keep a spare pair of reading glasses in my desk drawer but they are not very good. I have to get myself into precisely the right position to bring the screen into sharp focus; I’ll have a stiff neck tomorrow. I’ll have to pick my proper specs up later before I go to school tonight. Cunt. :
I am looking forward to 8.00pm when I can go home. (Update: Apparently it starts at 5.00pm with a buffet and they actually intend to finish by 7.00pm, so it might be bearable after all).
I am looking forward to getting my car back.
I am looking forward to tomorrow afternoon when I will go into town with six friends and colleagues for what will officially be our Christmas lunch, but which is really just another get together.
I am looking forward to Saturday afternoon and the Manchester derby match. City took four points off us last season, home and away, so I expect revenge.