Sunday, 30 December 2012

I am 60 years old!!






 Its a family members birthday next month, now, its a bloody pain in the arse having to  rack ones brain what to but someone for a birthday prezzie when ones exhausted ones limited brain power in thinking what on earth to buy them for a Christmas gift let alone having to squeeze the old brain cells to come up with a gift for the birthday in January!
But I did it! I came up with a gift for this person! I decided to buy it on line from 'Boots.com'. Its an especially suitable gift for this person I think which I think she'll get use out of. However buying the gift caused me to become really cross-not only at the global company that is 'Boots' but I guess at all those other companies we buy items from via the internet.
What got my goat was when I attempted to register with boots  (in order to buy the gift) I was requested to disclose my date of birth & then chose a "screen name"-a name which others would see when I give the company a review following my purchase.
Now I ask you just what the fuck has my date of birth got to do with me buying g a gift?? (if it were alcohol or a weapon yes, but not an item of bath furniture!!) Surely to God the only essential information that the company require is whether or not I have sufficient funds to buy the damn item not my age!! I did attempt to leave blank the section that demanded my date of birth, but the site refused to accept my registration if I left it blank. It also refused to accept my refusal to enter a "screen name".
 My date of birth, my age is my concern. For any company to demand my date of birth is an intrusion into my personal affairs.And to refuse to accept my registration when I decline to give my date of birth is ageism pure and simple.

I refused to disclose the demanded information incidentally and brought the item using my daughters already registered email account with Boots.

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Being a Catholic has its perk(s)!! But only at Christmas!

 I could have shouted out "I'm alright Jack, bugger you lot!" But I didn't. We were en route to the Holy sacrament that is the Mass this morning-I am a Catholic after all & I've gotta get my 'tick' on the register that will gain me entry into eternal life!). The car park at the rear of the local church was cordoned off by traffic cones & supervised by 2 burly fellows who were stopping cars 7 questioning the occupants.Our turn came. Winding down the car window the bury fellow on my right squinted at me and without a change of facial expression nor a word passing between us he nodded to me & his colleague at the same time. Whereupon the cones were lifted and we allowed into the church car park.
This happens every year around Christmas. Regular shoppers shopping for their Christmas prezzies are searching their little hearts out for a place to park their cars. Well now, they can forget St Dunstons's Church car park, cos unless you're a Catholic that goes to Mass, you ain't got a snowballs chance in hell of parking with us Catholics!!
IT was like a scene from a movie set in German occupied France during the 1940's-You're stopped by 2 burly guys in plain clothes who squint at you and shout "Papers!!" Only now, in 2012 Birmingham we have to show them our Baptismal Certificate that proves that we are Roman Catholics. Then, & only then will you be allowed to park your car. Otherwise....you're turned away.
It was hard not to feel a tad smug, when we were allowed through, but there again....I'm sure that smugness is a sin.
Being a Catholic has finally proved to be a perk!


Part of the car park at St Dunston's-Catholics only!


Thursday, 13 December 2012

Rest In Peace.

Add caption
Rest In Peace Ravi Shankar.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Hindsight

 Hindsight, they say is a wonderful thing to have. Indeed it is I'm sure we'll all agree with that.
And when I think of the recent tragic suicide of the nurse Jacintha Saldanha who took the hoax call from those 2 prat DJ's in Australia I wonder if the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge are thinking in  a hind-sightedness sort of way? 
The couple apparently said when they heard of the nurses suicide that they never complained to the hospital managers following the hoax call & that they were sadden to hear of the nurses death.
Its a great shame that they never said  personally to the nurse while she was alive that they never had any issue about the stupid call. Then perhaps Jacintha might still be here today & her family would be together for Christmas.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Morning Sickness in pregnancy - The Duchess of Cambridge.






As far as the Royal Family are concerned I don't really give a tinkers cuss about them. I wouldn't cross the road to catch a glimpse of them if they were in my street, & I know that they cost the country a small fortune to keep  but there again they do generate a fair amount of income for the UK one way or another.
However, I do think that there are a few 'hangers on' in the Royal Household who don't appear to do much, & we, the hard pressed British public have to fund their lavish lifestyles.
Now I don'y bare the Duchess of Cambridge any malice & I hope that she has a safe and healthy pregnancy.  But what the hell is going on when she is admitted to hospital suffering from 'Morning Sickness'!?
There are thousands of pregnant women in the UK (& throughout the world for that matter) who, although suffering from Morning Sickness, have to get up each & every morning, & go out to work in all weathers. If they didn't, then alot of them would lose their jobs & wouldn't be eligible for any State Benefits. There are thousands of women although suffering from Morning Sickness have to get up, dress children, feed them, take them to school & then go to work themselves feeling as they do absolute crap with the symptoms of Morning Sickness.
So come on Kate Middleton, get a grip. Grow up & smell the coffee.
Bloody Royals namby pamby's.
Nevertheless I wish her well.

Monday, 3 December 2012

Freedom of the Press??? Post Leveson enquiry.


So now the costly Leveson enquiry has made its report. I won't bore you with the outcome-you can read that yourself, but the report does advocate that there should be some legal control on what the press report/publish. Our slimy Prime Minister Cameron is against this. I guess his motives aren't transparent though, given his dealings with Rupert Murdoch et al. but what ever his motives are for opposing legal control of the British press I have to agree with him. My God Almighty!! I never thought that I'd find myself actually agreeing with a Tory politician, let alone David the slimy Cameron!!!

My belief is that if we have legal control on the press freedom is only a matter of time before the law has some control on all that is printed. Its a slippery slope.  Where will control of what is written end?
Yes, the press behaved totally immorally in tapping phones, printing stories that were sensitive & terribly hurtful & damaging to some people, their motives were purely financial to sell newspapers to a stupid, sad cross section of the British public who have nothing better to do that steep themselves in the daily lives of celebrities. So its my belief that the British public are also equally to blame for actually buying the gutter press that published these stories, tapped the phone-lines  & told outrageous lies.
So I say "no to legal control of the press". I say a resounding "yes" to press freedom & freedom of all that is published. Otherwise I think we're on the way to a state controlled media. whats next?? The burning of books that give a controversial opinion??

Saturday, 24 November 2012

The UK independence Party....?covert Fascists?


Nigel Farage-Leader of UKIP

I heard today on the local news of the city council in Rotherham South Yorkshire have said that all children from ethnic minorities placed in long term white British family foster care by them are to be encouraged to retain the customs (etc) of their original ethnic origin.
And so they should be. Should the child wish too that is-when the child reaches an age when he or she wishes to make a decision which culture they wish to be identified with then so be it.
To counter this however the United Kingdom Independence Party came out & said on the media that they believe that the edict of Rotherham Council is wrong, & that children of ethnic minorities fostered with white British families ought to be 'encouraged' to abandon their original ethnic culture a& be groomed as white British citizens.

To those of you unfamiliar with the United Kingdom Independence Party I can tell you that this is a British political party that amongst other doctrines in its manifesto demands immediate withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, & it is blatant in its Fascist belief that "multiculturalism has split our society...."  It also wants to bring back "traditional values". (Where have I heard that line before??!!!)

Thank God this party has no Westminster seats though they have the odd seat or 2 in the EU parliament & the odd city council seat dotted around the country.

I have long suspected that UKIP are a covert far right nationalist party hiding behind a veneer of political respectability. Indeed, one of their spokespersons  Lord Christopher Monckton in a recent video  interview in the United States apparently invited the extreme far right British Freedom Party to "come back & join us & we stand together"..

I do understand however that some other person in the bowels of UKIP had apparently loosely 'disowned' Lord Monckton's comments. Nevertheless people I invite you to have a gander at the policies of the United Kingdom Independence Party & form your own opinion of where or what they stand for, & maybe have a listen to the video interview of Lord Monckton's on 241Just Right. It makes interesting & to me, disturbing viewing.


Tuesday, 6 November 2012

We've caught our breath...


I'm sitting here at our dining room table typing away for the first time in what seems an eternity. I have music playing-a sure sign to me that my spirits are are on waxing. My choice of music currently causes me to feel a tad maudlin perhaps heart heavy. I'm listening to Shakespeare's Sonnets played on medieval musical instruments, & while they are beautiful they seem to remind me of a love I didn't have or indeed was able to return. What I returned was duty which emotionally isn't enough if a relationship (at whatever level it is) is to survive. But.....
 Events in our family home have taken a different tack over the last week or so, I won't bore any of you with them though! However mother fell again last week ended up again (for the second time within 5 days) in the local accident dept.  We have reluctantly decided that to have her stay with us is too risky. She requires 24 hr care; we weren't receiving any support nor help from either the healthcare/social work system nor other members of the family, so for mother's & ours we decided that residential care is the best option. She doesn't like this however: She becomes angry and verbalises her feelings saying that if this occurs we are "not to come & see her, to leave her & to let her rot (as she puts it) in the home"
I have mixed feelings about all this but such are the pains of life.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

The way it is

Now at 60 mine & the life of my immediate family-(those with whom I live) &  has turned around completely & utterly. We now have living with us my 86yr old mother.
She suffers from, Diabetes, vascular dementia with the associated confusion & memory issues, mobility problems as well as other physical illnesses. The lady suffered from behavioural issues before she become demented which periodically rear their nocuous  head & injury me as they have over many years past.Such is the nature of the beast that is vascular dementia it waxes & wanes ins its effects upon the sufferer.
 Thus the lives of my family have changed as the seasons change at he end of summer. No longer do we have time alone together, evenings or a few hours out alone together. Gone is the time I formerly spent on solitary exercise & gone is the time I was able to spend listening to the joy of my life- my music.

Thus we spend our lives caring for a woman who gave birth to me but gave me away to my grandmother when I was a baby. A mother who has said in the past that she "didn't give birth to me" & "didn't like me". This makes the caring at best difficult. harder still because nightly we are woken by her wandering about the house, turning on lights & going into bedrooms telling us that its time to get up-at all sorts of ungodly hours.
The local authority are conspicuous by their absence viz a vie their actual help in any form & my brother-my mothers 'golden boy' has said that he is unable to offer any support even for a few hours of respite. His family are untouched by the events currently unfolding in mine & his life unaffected. He has abdicated all responsibility to me & my family
We awake tired, downcast & negative & I try my very hard to be kind & caring to a woman who in the past abandoned me.
I take a crumb of comfort from the fact that there are thousands like us caring for elderly relatives in their homes with little support. But I wish that our lives could improve , that we could have some time together as a family. And I wonder if I'm being selfish when I long for some of my former own time?

Monday, 22 October 2012

Update since the 60th birthday


I ain't post since I turned 60-last month for the reasons which will become clear should you chose to read on!!

I had a very moving and joyful birthday, we went for an evening at a local organic cafe, alot of old friends came along -the night was wonderful & I was deeply touched by the lovely things people said about me. The beer and wine flowed as did the humour & good feelings. A truly memorable night not marred by me having to wear the damn boot-even tough it did cramp by 'dad dancing' style somewhat!!

The in early October Kate, Esther and me went to Spain. It was fantastic-the sun shone warmly on our vitamin D deprived bodies, we made new friends & bathed in the local pool-heavenly.
However all good things come to an end, & with every ying there has to be a yang. The yang on this occasion was my ailing mother.
She had been in a rehab' hospital for the elderly since before we went way to Spain & my brother (younger by 5 yrs)had visited her occasionally. Prior to us leaving we attended a meeting with a rather clinical, emotionally cold social worker who bluntly announced that mom would have to go into residential care. My brother when hearing this stormed out of the meeting leaving me to 'pick up the bits and attempt to negotiate any alternatives. The only one that I could come up with was that mom come and live with us-the 'system' was against this, whilst my brother was strongly against the residential care alternative, although not offering any other options.

Thus mom came to live with us along with 2 Zimmer frames, a commode and a large 'tiling stool' to assist her when she washes.Bare in mind that we live in a small mid terraced house with stairs & a bath/shower. the only loo is upstairs. Conditions are cramped, emotions fraught and care of the aforesaid lady difficult to say the least. My brother met with us last week and openly announced that he was unable to offer any time to help us-he has commitment with his son-takes him to football on Sundays, and his wife doesn't get on with mom.He did take her to his home last Saturday for 2 hours. This help from the man who firmly announced that he doesn't want his mother to go into residential care-yet his help to prevent this happening is limited to say the least!
we have come to see that my mothers personality is very similar to my brothers. They both scheme, avoid & manipulate.
Living her mom wakes throughout the night shouting for a nurse, wanders into my daughters room during the wee small hours, hobbles around our small lounge with her Zimmer frame, repeats herself+++, has physical health problems & hides the medication which she has been prescribed by the doctors .
Life is difficult. Mom attempts to manipulate me & Esther, & in truth, as you may or not be aware, I have no emotional attachment to her. Her behaviour is governed by who is with her at any given time-if its Esther then she wobbles about the house without her frame, refuses to eat, gossips about me whilst saying how helpful my brother has/is for her.But I'm used to this.
I'm not sure what to do. We get no help from my brother (who lives only 6 miles away from me).Emotions are, as I said fraught in our house, we are beginning to snap at each other & we are all dog tired.
So there you have it. Its all about doing ones duty I guess. Even though I have no attachment to mother I feel that I have to take her in or else......residential care.
Watch this space folks.

On a happy note though: my ankle is fantastic!-the pool in Spain provided some hydrotherapy for me & I've just returned from Physio at the local DGH.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

60.






Last week I hit 60, & whilst my head & heart don't feel 3 score years, my body burdened as it currently is by the damn boot, certainly does!
nevertheless the day itself passed (thankfully) peacefully. i had a few birthday cards arrive as well as text messages from those dear to me.I treated myself-I know its extravagant (!) to a coffee in a coffee bar on the High Street & read the newspaper. I did enjoy that & the sun shone1.
But the real pleasure came on the Saturday last-22nd September. I had arranged a small get together at a local cafe/jardin with a buffet laid on. The place had a bar with real ale as well as a bit of music. I had invited around 40 odd people including my colleagues from work as well as family.My daughter & her husband had taken the trouble to drive down from Tadcaster in Yorkshire the  evening before to spend the weekend with us.
I have to admit that that I was a tad apprehensive prior to the evening of the 'part' as I had feelings that none would turn up. However these feelings fortunately came to naught as all that were invited actually turned up as well as a couple more I hadn't expected!
The evening was wonderful! My colleagues from work were there & brought me cards with expensive gifts!! I hadn't expected that I have to confess!! My sister in law made me a fantastic cake (the last sliver has just been eaten by me as I type!), people from my past present and very recent present turned up. It was a very enjoyable night. I made lots of new friends & renewed some old ones.
For everyone who turned up & to God I say "thank you."

Friday, 21 September 2012

Cameron & his ministers are hypocrites




Andrew Mitchell MP-pushing his cycle for once!!



Two days ago in Manchester (UK) two police officers responding to an emergency summons were cold bloodedly gunned down & murdered by a known & wanted murderer. The crime horrified the nation, & rightly so.
Today, we had David Cameron taking time to go and visit the place where the police officers died & to 'pay his respects' to their relatives. Very noble & honourable you might be tempted to say, however this is from the man who is drastically cutting back on police numbers thereby reducing the number of officers on the streets, & is reducing their pensions.This from the man who as Prime Minister of these isles shows the utmost contempt for all of 'Public Servants' be they police officers, nurses, teachers, doctors or civil servants.
My view of Cameron's action is that it is the behaviour of a hypocrite & that of someone who in reality doesn't give a tinkers cuss about anyone other than himself or his rich Tory party members.

As if to illustrate this point further, we heard today of one of Cameron's chief misters-a fellow named Andrew Mitchell- used foul language at a police officer & calling him a "fucking pleb...... when asked to leave the exit to Downing Street via the smaller pedestrian exit & not the main vehicle gate by the police officer.
Cameron was said to be "angry" & the foul mouthed Mr Mitchell has apologised.
However. The other week I cycled to the local supermarket & for the last 2 yards of the journey I actually cycled on the pavement (leaving a major trunk road out of Birmingham where 9 months ago a cyclist died after being trapped & crushed under the wheels of a truck). I was 'flagged down' by a police officer who politely asked me not to ride on the pavement. (its illegal to ride a cycle on the pavement in the UK).
I apologised & dismounted. But I wonder what would have happened to me if I'd told the Police Officer to "fuck off you pleb". Guess I would have been arrested & rightly so, probably ending up with a caution at the local police station.

But I can't help but feel that there is one law for the man in the street & another for the those who hold elected office(?)


Sack Andrew Mitchell Mr Cameron.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Care of the elderly in the United Kingdom 2012

Residential 'Care' Home. (?)










My mother  ( as I wrote in an earlier post) is currently an inpatient in a rehab' hospital for the elderly. The care is fantastic, the impression given is that the place is a 'Hospital', the patient's appear to be treated as individuals I have nothing but praise for the staff.

Unfortunately I cannot say the same for the representative of Birmingham Social Services that I have encountered. The family & mom had a meeting with this Social Worker recently. We were steered to the ward dining room where other patients were sitting and there she 'told' us what the future plans were to be for my mother. We were told that mom is to be placed in to what she euphemistically called a "residential care home". We were told that mom is a "risk, hasn't mental capacity, (though this has not yet been tested!) wanders nightly & therefore requires 24 hour care. The families suggestions were ignored & we were told that on the 11th September 2012 mom would be taken to have a "look" at one care home -we could come along if we so desired.
The whole meeting (as I stated in the earlier post) had the effect upon me similar to what the effect upon Sonny Liston suffered when Cassius Clay caught him on the chin with his vicious right hook! It floored me. I was taken aback, totally unprepared for the comments/decisions made & the subsequent disempowerment.
However I have now collected myself & managed to discuss the meetings/decisions with the family.

So we visited the Residential 'Care' Home. It was a very modern building privately owned by an organisation. There were 56 residents-all appeared to be 65+yrs in age. As we went through the door the- (I assume she was the manager who was showing us about)- said to the social worker in the presence of my brother, me & mom-"is this dementia or elderly care?" I'm afraid I was a little corrective of her when I heard this comment/question, reminding the 'warden' that mom and family we present! The hackles rising within me as they were.
  We were shown about- it was clean, warm all the things you would expect. People seemed happy & content. However, doors to the lovely garden were locked. Residents were not allowed out alone no matter how much or little capacity they had. The 'warden' spoke of a "duty of care". What utter bollocks!-"duty of care" should include continuing to allow (& constantly reviewing the understanding that the individual has of the concept)-the resident access to personal space & freedom.
We were shown a (locked) shop for the residents-a pretty neon sign was flicked on for our benefit as the 'warden' opened the door!)-mom was told that she "can buy EVERYTHING you need from here, you need never go out to the shops" There was a hairdressers on site, quiet rooms it was a rabbit warren of rooms to be honest.
But my strong unshakable belief is that people benefit from spending time in the community-be it at the local shop or the local community hairdressers. Indeed I also believe that the wider community greatly benefit from sharing the community with the widest diversity of population possible. Great emphasis is placed in our society on racial & religious understanding & sharing but the elderly are excluded from this equity. They are locked away, appear to be generally denied the privileges of  broader society & community living.
Mom in fairness said time & time again that she wanted her "own home". The social worker & 'warden' attempted to dissuade her from this. However at this point I'd seen & had enough of this disempowered, dysfunctional way of housing people in pens not dissimilar to battery chickens. I spoke up & strong said that mom be listen to, that we would not allow her to become a resident of a residential home (unless she strongly desired to become one). She should be allowed to go to her home (or a more suitable accommodation) & try out independent living. I refused to allow the authority to allow mom to be sent away-no matter how difficult the relationship is & has been to date between us. It is my duty.

What sort of society do we live in that allows those who have contributed there time, sweat, blood & money to the established infrastructure of it to be shut away & disempowered once they reach an age deemed by that society to be of no further use??
Shame on that society.
 Shame & damn the United Kingdom Health & Social Care 'Service' 2012. Shame & damn Birmingham  Social Services.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Lame :-(


The Boot!


Last Tuesday whilst my next door neighbour and me were climbing over the fence at the bottom of the garden to inspect the space available for log storage-we both have wood burning stoves, thus store/dry logs.
I lost my balance whilst climbing over, tumbled backwards & landed on my arse via my right ankle and left hand.
Ouch! or Prat! I hear you say. However it wasn't as simple as that. My ankle swelled up to gargantuan   proportions, my wrist left wrist followed suit & I felt awful. (As well as a complete idiot)
It became clear to us that I had sprained (again!) my ankle as well as my wrist and treated them both with the appropriate first aid.
When Kate came home she whisked me down to the local accident & emergency room where they diagnosed sprains affecting left wrist & right ankle & sent me home. Easy eh? Unfortunately no. Since then the pain, swelling & bruising has worsened. My overall mobility has decreased & the pain from my ankle has increased.

So. Yesterday (Monday) the swelling increased, the daily amount of painkillers doubled and the bruising now a delightful shade of greeny-blue Kate dropped me once again at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. He I was once again examined, my foot and ankle x-rayed from a different angle I was informed  that I have chipped a bone in my ankle & torn some ligaments.
Brilliant. However it does explain the amont of pain & discomfort that I've been in over the past week.

So now I have a bloody great grey plastic boot on over my damaged lower leg/ankle. It has to stay on at least until October 1st when I have to return for a follow up appointment.
To say that it cramps my style is an understatement. I can't cycle, go for walks, shop at the local market for my fresh vegetables, even walk without hobbling & lurching around like a drunken Douglas Bader lookalike! Worse still I can't go to work-now that pisses me off. I do love my work. I'm limited also to what work I can do around the house & garden too.
Autumn is a wonderfully beautiful time of the year-especially around the local parks here in Kings Heath, but as my mobility is severely limited I'm afraid that I'll miss the colours, sights & smells of the season.
I'll have this damn boot on for my birthday as well!
Still it could be alot worse.....I'm lucky to have the facility that enables me to have my wound healed. And I give thanks for that.



Friday, 7 September 2012

Social Services-Stalin is alive & well







Whether we like it or not we all have to do our 'duty' & with rights comes responsibilities. These are not just cliché but I believe maxims that mark a civilized society. And to me personally 'duty' is very important.

I have a 'difficult' relationship with my mother. We have never been close ( & earlier posts will expand on this). However for the past month she has been incarcerated in a rehab' hospital for the elderly following a small fall at home. The physical care given to my mother has been  tremendous & first class. The staff have been attentive, caring & dutiful. The time has now arrived however for mother to be discharged. We met with a Social Worker yesterday who informed us that mother HAS to move into a residential Home for the elderly. They have arrived at this decision as 'they' (the 'care team') believe (apparently) that mother is a risk to herself, she is demented, has poor mobility & needs constant supervision.
 She or us have to pay any financial short fall for this. Mother was informed of this & she, amid some tears, refused "an old peoples home". My younger brother  (who is 'golden balls' in mothers eyes'!) walked out thereby leaving me once again to pick up the bits and be portrayed as the 'bad guy'. Nothing new in that!

Kate & I discussed the issue late into the night. We decided that despite all that we feel about mother we have a duty of care to take her in with us. We would modify our house & hopefully get some help from the local authority in providing some respite care for mother & us(!).
The Social Worker phoned today & I informed her of out idea/suggestion/offer.
It was shot down & ridiculed by the Social Worker. I was told that mother has to go into residential care for her protection, that we couldn't cope with her "wandering during the night" (I don't recall mother actually wandering during the night) & that we haven't the skills to care for mother.
My nursing knowledge tells me that living in a 'home 'with a family far improves a persons quality of life rather than they living in a residential home. Despite all that I feel about mother if she wishes to come & stay with me & my family then so be it. I will modify my house to suit her needs. I have a duty & responsibility to take her in, I would argue this point with God himself. It will be hard, damn hard we are aware of that, & we will insist upon support from the local authority in her care.

It seems that the 'Nannie State' is trying once again to show its fist. However this time they will have a damn hard fight on their hands, I will not allow them to impose their Stalinist dictates upon me. I will fight this wretched Social Worker every inch of the way for fairness & justice for my mother & for us.
Big brother will not triumph, how dare they believe that they can impose their will over the individual!

Power to the People!!! 
Stalin is dead!
Long live the Revolution!



Monday, 3 September 2012

The National Health Service & The 2012 Olympic Games.





This post will hopefully be- (do I hear some of you mutter "please...?") the last rant/moan about the recent London Olympics. It will not be the last post I ever type concerning the debacle that is currently the National Health Service.
The health service of the UK was once the envy of the world- it is said that though, envy ultimately destroys,  if this be the case then, envy is well en route to destroying the NHS. Especially as it is now in the hands of a Government intent on wrecking not only the NHS, but also of systematically crushing the soul, heart & morale of the majority its citizens.

The NHS functions as it does solely on the goodwill of those who work within the service. Lunch breaks if taken are eaten hurriedly whilst 'on the job, staff regularly work over their allocated time of duty without remuneration  & mangers pile ever increasing work upon their staff in order that targets be met-thereby bring funding into the service. The new patient of the NHS has become paperwork. It is paperwork & targets that need to be nurtured & cared for, the human person who was once the focus & centre of Bevan's NHS now lies de-hydrated, in a wet bed waiting for treatment/therapy.

This sorry state of affairs was illustrated at the time of the burlesque show that was the London Olympic Games. One Health Trust in the UK a patient in need of CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy)- be it they are referred to psychological services because they suffer from depression, OCD, thought disorder, anxiety etc etc. Have to wait a minimum of 6 months for therapy to be seen. If you are lucky enough not to be afflicted by any of the aforementioned mental health conditions, you might just say" Hmmm...that's not to bad..." However, imagine that you're unable to leave your own house without feeling that your heart is beating so fast that it will explode in your chest, that you can't breath for fear of leaving your home, that you feel panic at the thought of having to open your front door. Imagine that you have suffered horrendous abuse as a child & now, as an adult you now feel unable stop yourself from cutting your arms as a way of 'coping' Then, I think, you'd want some help ASAP. Now, if had these difficulties perhaps 6 months is like an eternity.

However, in the Health Trust I refer to the psychological lead therapist/manager was allowed time off to offer & be there to give therapeutic care to "some of the world's elite athletes..." This was boasted about by the trust-a feather in the cap no doubt.
But meanwhile the real sick & injured of our society have to wait a minimum of 6 months for therapy.

Where are the priorities here people??




Saturday, 25 August 2012

Prince Harry naked!!!












Good old Prince Harry! He's following the behaviour of his namesake of 400 odd years ago-King Henry V111. If you recall he was the King of England who after cavorting about with 6 wives engaged in lots of other sorts of riotous behaviour  (so we're led to believe anyway!) Some where or other I presume his behaviour involved him parading his manhood about the environs of Hampton Court. (I wonder perhaps if that's where the expression came from "Flashing your Hampton??")

Anyway that's by the by.
The' Sun'  newspaper the other day pictured the aforesaid Prince Harry (apparently) naked nearby a hotel pool in Las Vegas. The 'newspaper' stated that it was posting the picture and subsequent story  "for the public good and interest". WTF!!
 I wonder what good it actually does the good old British Public to see &/or have knowledge of the heir to the throne of the British Isles and Commonwealth bollock naked?? I for one don't care if Prince Harry walks up the Mall in London or goes around Birmingham's Bullring fruit & veg' market naked with an avocado balanced on his head!

I've said it lots of times before.......has the 'Sun' only limited numbers of reporters that its unable to send them to other locations around the world to report on what's happening...the unfolding tragedy that is currently Syria , the jail term imposed on the murderer in Norway-Anders Breivik not to mention the Euro crisis.
But who am I kidding?? Its the 'Sun' I'm talking about!! Gutter press par excellence!!

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Dancing dogs



We don't watch much television in our house. Aside from the odd 'period drama' and documentary the programmes are generally shite, mindless & not worth the licence fee.
The channels available seem full of soap operas ( which all share in common a pub and alcohol) and lately trite performance shows such as 'Britain's got talent' & the 'X-Factor' These shows appeal to peoples innate wanton urge for fame at any price. People appear to crave fame, & appear seem prepared to go to any de-humanizing lengths in order to hopefully see their name in lights or make the front page of the gutter press. 
The winner (apparently) of the latest fiasco fame show AKA 'Britain's got talent' was wait for it....a boy with a dancing dog.
Jesus Christ on the Holy mountain!! Whatever next??
I have to state at this point that I have never seen this juvenile & his canine nor will I be in any rush to. However the media this morning have announced that the exhibition of dogs dancing publically will be banned & the dressing of dogs in garish costumes such as father Christmas, clowns etc will also be banned.

Whilst I agree with this-the whole concept of dressing up animals in 'human' costumes is bizarre, & the act of getting the unfortunate animal to perform for human gratification is beyond my understanding.
However, the act of 'banning' the practice causes me disquiet. There are far too many issues/acts & things 'banned' in the UK. Perhaps we should consider banning the UK's interference in other sovereign nations affairs? Never mind the bloody Dancing Dog!!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Part time work & other rantings...









Kate and I have just returned from a wonderful week spent with friends in Vernon-Normandy. To those of you who have never visited this part of France I urge you to go. It is beautiful, moving in the emotional sense, historical and the people warm & friendly. The weather too was blissful-the sun shone which enabled us to take the sea air, paddle in the sea and stroll along the prom' in the seaside town of Cabourg.

Whilst there we visited the beaches used in the 'D-Day' landings of 1944. We stood & gazed in awe,horror & admiration at the thousands of graves of young men who, were it not for them, I would not be able to type and rant as I do, & you dear reader would not be able to read these same ranting without fear of a knock at your door in the middle of the night.
These young men, some as young as 21yrs old, gave me the gift of their tomorrows so that I might be able to enjoy the sunshine of Birmingham today. Thank you gentleman. So much sacrifice, sorrow and so many ghosts hang in the air of the American cemetery nearby Omaha beach. The earth too still bares the scars of the horror of that period some 70 odd yrs ago.
All this caused by one mans' bitterness, paranoia & evil. And have we learnt anything??? The killing goes on... the young men die again & again.....

Now lets rant about part time working.
 I work 2 days weekly-employed by the National Health Service . Specifically I'm employed by an agency called 'Temporary Staffing" which is run by the local Health Trust. The title "Temporary" is a tad misleading-I've been doing the job for over a year now!! Whilst I was away I received texts messages -sometimes 5 texts daily-asking for me to work an extra shift at other locations in the Trust. I ignored them.
My point is this people: I work without a contract, I receive no sick pay if I'm off sick & I am not allowed holiday leave nor holiday pay-if I don't work I don't get paid. My pay is basic, I receive no shift allowance& no 'perks'.
Upon reflection I think that the NHS Trust is taking the piss. I feel that I am being exploited as are hundreds of other Temporary Staffing employees  employed by the Trust.
But what can I do? Its my choice. I love the work and I love the people I work with. Its a well documented fact that the National Health Service functions on the goodwill & morality of the staff employed within it.

On a much more cheerful note however..... whilst Kate & I were in Cabourg we came across a cat with what I can only describe as "attitude". Sadly I didn't take his photo-but I don't think a photo would have done him true justice.
Thus fella used to lie sprawled out in one of 3 places throughout the day on the approach road to the beach. He'd sometimes be washing himself or just lying there catching the rays.
Often I'd witness people approach him, attempt to stroke him, whisper sweet cat nothings to him & the odd person used to offer him the odd morsel of food.
The cat however, didn't budge. His ears went back, & he looked at the person with utter contempt. he seemed to look at the person who approached him with an expression that seem to say "Get the hell away from me....". Man, this fella had serious attitude.
There you go now. The Olympic Games are over, no surface to air missiles were launched...what was all the fuss about then???


Saturday, 28 July 2012

London 2012 Olympic Games






David Cameron (Lt) & Adian Burley MP (Rt)


I think by now the message is well known to all reader of my rants & ravings: I believe that the expenditure on the London Olympic Games is disproportionate to the current financial state that the UK (& Europe) finds itself in. I have postulated my alternative option for the games & I stick by that option.

However I watched on TV last night the extravagant opening ceremony of the Games. It went on for around 3 hours, and I must admit, it both brought a tear to my cynical eye and, made me a wee bit proud of the UK.(I NEVER thought that I'd say that!!)

The film director Danny Boyle did an excellent & wonderful job in his portrayal of Britain. The sets, music, dancing & special effects were fantastic. To top it all Queen Lizzie herself did a performance with James Bond!!-Good on her!! I especially liked the set devoted to that most noteworthy & noble institution- the National Health Service.
The UK's Health Service used to be the envy of the world, & whilst envy & pride is a wicked things , I believe we here in the UK should be rightly proud of our NHS.
 Imagine my dismay & disgust this morning then when I heard that  a Conservative MP- The Rt Hon Adian Burley-  dismissed the ceremony as "Leftish crap multicultural crap". More worryingly the comments were made at a Nazi themed stag party. I ask myself and David Cameron, what is one of his part members doing at an extreme right wing political party social event???

But what do we expect from the middle class , public school boy, out of touch right wing Fascist party? Mr Burly should be mindful that  it was on the sweat, blood and bones of my ancestors that his party made their fortunes. That the working class of countless generations worked upwards of  14hours daily to create the wealth that his party then took from the workers and squandered on their lavish life styles. It was the same working class that his party of ruling class toffs sent to their deaths in the countless pointless wars that were initiated in the name of 'peace'.

Get back to your ivory tower Mr Burley, gouge yourself on your foie gras & read your history books.



Sunday, 22 July 2012

A bunch of paper pushing unjust prats?



An item in the news in the UK today takes the biscuit. It illustrates to me that in the UK today there are lots of laws but very little justice. It illustrates that the nation is run in reality by faceless bureaucratics' who pass judgement on the population at the stroke of a ball point pen and rubber stamp.

I don't agree with the war in Afghanistan. Its not a just war, a war that can never be 'won'. And as if to illustrate the unjust nature of the war a British soldier with 13 years service, service which has seen him serve this country in Iraq & in Afghanistan. earned him a string of medals, suffer the torture of PTSD and now he has left the British army hoping to settle in the UK.
You see the soldier in question is not from the UK. He's a Commonwealth citizen from the islands of Fiji.
Normally it appears that when a soldier from the Commonwealth has served 4 years service in the British armed forces they are entitled to become British citizens. The soldier in question-Lance Corporal Baleweil as left the army and has applied to the British Government to become a citizen. He is married to a English wife and has 2 children.
However: His application has been REFUSED!!  L/Cpl Baleweil has to leave the UK in 1 week and return to Fiji. He is being deported. Yes you read correctly...Deported.

Why?? Well it appears that some years ago he was (whilst in the army, he got into a fight with another soldier prompted by alcohol. L/Cpl Baleweil was never charged by the army, he was apparently 'disciplined 'and fined. That's all
But because of this 1 'sin' he is being denied citizenship by the nation he served. The UK border agency (who apparently wields the sword' on these matters, has decided: he has to get the hell out of the UK.
What a disgraceful way to treat  a man who was prepared to lay his life down for the country he hoped he'd be able to settle in.




Wednesday, 18 July 2012

The Laziest people in Europe??!!












I almost choked over my Marmite on toast breakfast this morning. I had the 8am news on BBC Radio 4 as usual when they announced that in a recent survey the population of the UK was found to be the most ..."obese and laziest nation in Europe...". The researchers who came up with these findings said that adults ..."ought to engage in at least 30 minutes moderate activity per week, such activity would be walking or cycling...." And that 65% of the UK population fail to meet recommended levels of physical activity.

All well and good I say, & no doubt that their findings are probably correct.. However I wonder if these esteemed  (who hail from Brazil incidentally),white-coated, head in the clouds researchers have included in their research the facts that we are possibly the 1 nation in Europe with the fewest holidays?Have they taken into account that Cameron & his crowd of robbers now make the (few) workers there are work up until they are approx' 72 yrs of age on average?  Or that by the end of the working day the working population are too tired to actually go out fro a brisk walk on streets denuded of front line police officers by his Government, in their attempts to either save money or provide security for the damn Olympic Games?
Have these hair brained researchers taken into the equation that here in the UK the weather is totally awful, that is rained daily for the last 3 months, or that in winter it gets dark at 3:30pm? (when most of us still employed are still at work).
I'm not the most active of Brits nor am the most fit or slimmest,I do try to go out on my bike (weather permitting!) daily or have a walk in my local park at least weekly with Kate. But I'm also aware that I am very lucky. I have 2 lovely parks nearby and that I am semi retired and have the benefit of daylight & more energy.

I sometimes wish though that these research people would ;look at the bigger picture. But maybe they do.....& the BBC (the Governments mouthpiece) only tell us not even half the picture...rather the bit of the picture the Government wants us to see & hear(?).
O yes...the researches also siad that drinking "moderate amounts of alcohol in middle to late age can increse the onset of dementia. Common sense or what?!

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Further nonsense on the 2012 Olympics.










Its a matter of days now to the financial farce that has become known as the London Olympic Games 2012.
No doubt the television and radio will be full of  it-the events, bullshit & all the other paraphernalia that been promised. I hope that Radio 4 & Classic FM will provide some sort of refuge from this sporting burlesque show of  prattle.
But it gets worse: The British Government have decided to position some Surface to Air (anti aircraft missiles) on the roof(s) of residential blocks of flats/apartments! This, the Government say is to deter would be terrorists from launching an attack on the Games.The residents of the flats & apartments apparently went to the High Court in an attempt to appeal against the Governments decision to position these missiles but guess what....they lost their appeal. Surprise, surprise.
I seem to remember a while ago the 'coalition' forces who, whilst they waged yet another of their illegal wars, condemned the despotic Saddam Hussain for using the people of Iraq as 'Human shields'. Hmmm....
Whatever. The whole concept of citing surface to air anti aircraft missiles on roofs of residential properties is insane &over the top. I note that there are no missiles sited near Knightsbridge or Mayfair or anywhere else nearby the West End of London. Nor are there any missiles sited around the finanical area of the City of London -maybe there's a message in that though!!
 My history tells me that during the Second World War the Brits cited their anti aircraft guns away from residential property.


Ranting about matters financial, I see that Bob Diamond the former chief exe' of Barclay's Bank was awarded £2,000,000 as a golden handshake from the company. For once people words fail me.... You don't hear that very often do you!!!

Monday, 2 July 2012

Cameron's Health Service



 I have today fallen a tad ill. Nothing serious, but I need the attention of my family doctor. My doctor works in a group practice of 4 doctors, 2 practice nurses and a chiropodist. In order to make an appointment to see anyone in the surgery its necessary to either call in or phone and book an appointment.


Armed with this knowledge and the telephone number of the surgery I phoned to make an appointment hopefully within the next day or so. However I was told that the next available appointment was on July 23rd.- 3 WEEKS!! 


3 Weeks to see a doctor-God almighty I could be dead and buried whilst waiting to see my family doctor!!
The receptionist when I phone told me that there is an alternative to waiting until July 23rd....I could phone the surgery at 8:30 on Tuesday morning to be seen later that day. "That sounds good" says I. However the receptionist told me that they have only a very limited number of appointments available & that the phones are constantly engaged. But "please feel free to phone".
My daughter who works as a doctor's receptionist in another GP's practice tells me that the '8 :30 am rule' is common, & not to get my hopes up for an appointment because I'll never get through!!


I wonder does Mr Cameron have theses problems when he or his family need to see their family doctor?? Of course not!! He has a private doctor looking after him & all those who orbit around him & share his inner circle.



































Saturday, 30 June 2012

Plain English

Plain English???














Some years ago I recall that there existed an organisation appropriately named the 'Plain English Society'. It may still exist  for all that I'm aware, but it seems that their keeping stum at the moment.
These guys used to campaign for national organisations  to speak & publish the written English word in a manner that could be understood by all & sundry. Commendable, I'm all for dropping the arrogant, omnipotent bullshit that lots of organisations & people speak & write. It seems to me that there are occasions that some organisations & people hide behind fancy words.
Where is all this coming from? And indeed where is all this going to!??

Those of you who either stumble upon my rantings by some freak act of fate, or those of you who regularly take the time & trouble to read them, might know that  I am  Roman Catholic &, actually attend Holy Mass & partake of the Sacraments. I know......you'd never think this, given the nature of some of rants & the language I (occasionally) come out with! But there you go.

The Liturgy recently has changed-God & Pope Benedict XVI knows why but some of the words we pray are multi-syllabled. For example we've gone from saying in the Creed "One in being with the Father" to "Con-substantial with the Father..."  There's a few more changes which I won't bore you with-Go to Mass & check 'em out -those Catholics amongst you who are lapsed!! :-)
Plain English??? Hmm...
Then we have the 'Bidding prayers' These are prayers that are led by the priest in which we pray for  current issues & needs that the world(local & national) needs the good Lords intervention to put right.
However its very rare that we pray for peace in the world or for the people of war torn countries, the maimed & wounded of these wars, the 11yr old girl mowed down by a truck on the high street the other month or anything that people could identify with that affect them. The prayers that are said are impersonal, irrelevant  & the words though in English are archaic. The words of Shakespeare, though medieval,  they are full of meaning and passion-just read the Sonnets. But the words used in the Holy Mass are neither passionate nor spiritually uplifting.
It seems to me that the 'Plain English Society' should pay a visit to the head of the Roman Catholic Church in the UK & have word or two. I wonder what God thinks....
For me though, I don't do bullshit. Say it as it is.

Thursday, 28 June 2012

The wanker bankers

Cheers old fruit!!








I note that the banks have been at it again, rather, they were at it again as the rest of us were struggling during the worst days of the latest credit crunch. Not only have they recently fecked up peoples financial transactions via an idiot pressing (its now been admitted!) the wrong button on his computer. Thus causing mayhem, great inconvenience & hardship to those poor suckers who put their money with National Westminster, Ulster and Royal Bank of Scotland banks. But the other day it emerged that some of the greedy investment bankers namely those at Barclay's Bank for one, were apparently exchanging inside information in order to fix national & international interest lending rates (Libor -London Inter Bank Offered Rate- rates).

These bastards have grown fat, even more sloth like in their behaviour and even more nauseating  they apparently exchanged this information on the phone & via E- mail by using pet names such as "Hi Dude" & Howdy Chicken"!. For the tip off's, and for allowing another one of their incestuous breed into the scam they used bottles of Bollinger Champagne as a part payments & bribes.

These wankers are utterly amoral & deserve to be dismissed, fined and prohibited from taking any job in the financial sector in the future. While the rest of the population struggle, go to food banks, lose their houses & livelihoods because of the financial crunch, these vermin toast each other in the best champagne and eat the best food that there ill gotten gains can buy.
Thank heavens for the Financial Services Agency that both uncovered & then exposed this outrage. But then, as if to placate us gullible sops, the chairman of Barclay's-Bob diamond has given up his bonus (which runs into millions of GBP's. Bugger that, Mr Diamond you should do the honourable thing and fall upon your (broken) sword & resign-get the hell out of it ASAP-that is if you have any shame left.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Lord Charles









My neighbour Jim & I have now began to store wood for the onset of winter 2012-2013. It is debatable that the winter has arrived already, given tha\t the summer to date in the UK has/is shite. But be that as it may we have established wood stores dotted around our garden, over the fence at the rear  of my garden where we have established 4 'cabins' (constructed by ourselves from recycled wooden pallets) These nest snugly on the embankment above the railway line that runs at the rear of our houses. We have these already stocked to the brim with sawn logs, seasoning as I type that we have gleaned from locations around the city & county of West Midlands.


But: We are running out of space! So enterprising wood gleaners that Jim & I are we have managed to scrounge a could of wooden packing crates from local DIY merchants.These are ideal for both the storage & seasoning of our collected wood & are stored in the upper parts of our respective gardens. We have established a 2 tier storage system with potted plants on the roof-to make them look pretty don't you know!


Aside of anything else the logs, as they sit seasoning look rather aesthetically pleasing to the eye. I have hit a snag however in the form of  feline intrusion. Charlie Coal it appears, has heard of the old British Law of 'Squatters Rights' The law apparently has a definition that goes something like this..." A method of gaining legal title to real property by actual, open, hostile, & continuous possession of it to the exclusion of its true owner for the period prescribed by state law"

Charlie you see has moved in & occupied the upper tier of the storage case. Along with a garden gnome which also occupies the case, he sits, sleeps, washes, & surveys his estate. Soft prat that I am I even placed a couple of old thin chair cushions for him to be more comfortable on !! 
He retires there post breakfast, nips off to conduct his ablutions & returns there to sleep the day away. Its a great life don't you think??


Tonight as I went into the garden to water the potted plants, he rolled on his back & enticed me to tickle his tummy! And guess what???...I fell for it...I tickled his tummy, But before long I was dismissed when he began to wash his arse.... Sweet.


I enclose a couple of photographs of Château Charles.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Fathers Day 2012



The Red Arrows




I'm not usually one who goes in for all this Fathers & Mothers day malarkey. I believe it to be a money making commercial racket.However I gotta admit that this year I not only loved the day, but I relished the time I able to spend with my son now aged 28years.
You see, I have always been keen on airplanes ever since I was a kid. I used to assembled them and hang them from the ceiling of the spare room in my grandmothers house. Indeed, one of my earliest olfactory memories is the smell of  the apples that lay carefully packed & stored in boxes on the floor in that room. My grandfather had 6 apple trees and used to store the apples in that room!
So then imagine my delight when my son, Christopher, asked me if I'd like to come to an air display as a Fathers' day treat!! So, come this last Sunday morning he came early to collect me and took me to RAF base Cosford for the display. It was FANTASTIC! we spent 7 hours there, & I have never in my life known 7 hours pass so quickly! I am unable to describe the sights that we saw nor the emotion that I felt having  Chris now a man, stand besides me, for the last time we went there (not to an air display but to the air museum at RAF Cosford) was when Chris was 9 years old. I did shed a quiet tear as we sat in his car eating  sandwiches that his partner had made us.

I have enclosed for you just 1 snap I took of one of the displays we witnessed. It is of the RAF aerobatic display team-'The Red Arrows'. These planes were hurtling about the sky at speeds in excess of 450mph & flying in close formation at a distance of only 8 feet between each plane!
Then we saw (& heard!!) the Euro fighter. I have never heard such a noise. The ground shook as it roared past, & the machine seemed to defy gravity when it stood on its tail in the sky before roaring vertically upwards. For the life of me I am unable to understand how these machine manage to stay in the air!.
However, on a pragmatic note, I reflect on the financial cost of each of these Euro fighters:£126,000,000 each plane. And for what?? But let me not spoil the day.

Thank you Chris. Thank you too Claire for your gift, & to my lovely Esther for hers.
You are my treasures and my delight.
xxx

Thursday, 7 June 2012

The Royal Jubilee et al

Betws-y-Coed











Last week saw the UK benefit from an extended Bank Holiday-ie: we had 2 rather than the usual 1 which we are normally granted at this time of year. The extra holiday was granted on the occasion of the Queen's diamond jubilee-she had been queen of these Islands and Dominions for 60 years. Now I'm not a great one for the Royal family, I'd never wish them harm & all that but I must admit that I admired the Queen who at 85years old, stood for 4 hours whilst a flotilla of boats made its way past her on the River Thames. This was apparently the largest collection of boats of all shapes and sizes seen on the Thames for almost 40 years. Now fair play to the Queen, I find great difficulty in standing for 10 minutes or so whilst at Holy Mass! Good Luck to you Lizzie!!

Kate & I took the opportunity of the extra holiday & went away for a couple of days to North Wales. The scenery where we stayed in Betws-y-Coed is wonderful. waterfalls, mountains, seasides, old Welsh slate mines it has the lot. We went on walks daily & had a splendid (though at times damp time) The weather you see was typically Welsh...wet. But no matter it was relaxing and very de-stressing.

Speaking of weather it would appear as though we here in Birmingham have fallen prey to the foul UK summer again. Its poured with rain all day today, the temperature is chilly enough for us to light the wood burning stove-not that Charlie Coal minds-he's curled up and actually snoring in his cardboard box. So here we have it.... approaching mid summer in the UK and we have to light the bloody fire to keep warm. Small wonder that the average Brit is deficient in Vitamin D!!

On an unrelated issue I think that there must be something amiss within me.... If you read this blog on a regular (or irregular ) basis you may observe that I haven't actually had a full blown rant recently. This is of some concern to me. Why haven't I had a rant? am I becoming passive & accepting of the events ,people & situations that formerly stirred my blood to boiling point??  I hope not...
But for now I enclose a photo of beautiful Betws-y-Coed & 1 of Queen Lizzie.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

And meanwhile elsewhere.....



The sun is shining brightly in Birmingham at the moment-we're in the midst of a mini heatwave with temperature hovering around the 26C mark. Looking at the thermometer on the laptop here I note that inner city Brum is hotter than lovely Alicante Spain
However somewhere in this world of ours the killing and mayhem continues in Syria and in Afghanistan. Today I herd of another young life lost in Helmand Provence and of a massacre of 92 souls in Syria including 40 odd children. What justification can there ever be for this slaughter? How can those responsible sleep at night? What images do these killers see as they close their eyes? 
The sad thing is that the majority of people in the West have gotten used to hearing of theses outrages & now don't pay much heed when they hear of them. When will we realise that evil triumphs when good men do nothing??

There is so much happening in the world at the moment which troubles my heart. I hear and read of the financial troubles of Greece & lately of Spain. I hear of the hardship & near starvation of the people of Greece & I feel both outrage. I feel sadness that these nations with so much culture, history & romance are struggling to survive due to the greed of bankers & currency speculators.   

This week in the UK we heard that Cameron's Government have endorsed a report that says that employers could have the right to fire people without prior notice & at the same time removing the right of workers io seek claim for 'unfair dismissal'.  Why is anyone surprised? This was bound to happen once a Conservative government was voted in. They represent the wealthy and the employer-not the worker. Why the fuss? The majority were bloody stupid enough to vote for these prats so you & the rest of us have gotta suffer such draconian laws& statement for the next damn 5 years!

On a lighter note-(though sadly not cheerful!) the UK came second last in last nights Eurovision Song Contest. Representing us was the 76 year old crooner Engelbert Humperadinck who God help him did his best with the material he had but it wasn't good enough!. Thinking about it it would perhaps have been more fitting and (?)more appropriate, if the UK had got a group of singers playing medieval musical instruments, singing one of Shakespeare's sonnets. ( abit jazzed up for the occasion of course). After all it is the Queens Diamond Jubilee, The (bloody) Olympics are coming to the UK & Shakespeare was a Brit. Just a thought....

Wherever you are people I hope that the sun shines for you, that your life is peaceful & that your country lives within its means in justice & fairness for all.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

The Philosophers Song... By Monty Python....





Immanuel Kant was a real pissant
 Who was very rarely stable
 Heidegger, Heidegger was a boozy beggar
 Who could think you under the table

David Hume could out consume
Schopenhauer and Hegel

And Wittgenstein was a beery swine
Who was just as schloshed as Schlegel

There's nothing Nietzsche couldn't teach yer
'Bout the raising of the wrist
Socrates, himself, was permanently pissed

John Stuart Mill, of his own free will
On half a pint of shandy was particularly ill

Plato they say, could stick it away
Half a crate of whiskey every day

Aristotle, Aristotle was a bugger for the bottle
Hobbes was fond of his dram
And René Descartes was a drunken fart
"I drink, therefore I am"

Yes, Socrates, himself, is particularly missed
A lovely little thinker
But a bugger when he's pissed.




Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Blinded...





Blinded by Love I pray not for the daybreak,
Lest the sunlight melt thy desire,
My ardour blunted for the events of the day
For thou art my day and its full content.

Blinded by Love,
Stumbling I search not safety.
Only the comfort of thine lips to be my redemption. 
Let thine adieu be like the midday moonlight
For my frail heart could not contemplate such agony.

Blinded by Love
My ears hark only to thine voice 
 Pay heed to thine entreaty alone
My lips to kiss thine alone.
I am Blinded by thy Love, thy art my focus
Daybreak; I petition thee to dally. 

x


Tuesday, 15 May 2012

It was a bad idea...


Prompted perhaps an unconscious wish to self harm immersed as I was yesterday in the subterranean well of melancholy, I decide to saw up some wooden pallets with the bow saw. (You will recall that the family forbid me to use the chain saw unsupervised-clumsy as I am).
Anyhow. I took to the bow saw between rain showers yesterday (Monday)and.....cut my left hand. Boy, did it bleed! Closer inspection of the laceration revealed that I inflicted a number of small cuts & 2 deep lacerations.
Pissed off & cursing myself I applied 3 'sterisrips' to the deep wounds and band aid plasters to the others. At this point ,I decided to curtail any further attempts at wood sawing/chopping & more importantly, any further attempts at deliberate self harm for the day. I guess you could say that the unconscious desire had been satisfied! Well, at least 'til today when mother arrives down (via taxi order by me no-less!) for dinner cooked by me.
I changed the dressing(s) today...ugh!.. it looks grim. I've worn a vinyl glove on the wounded hand whilst cooking today, & I must resist any desire unconscious or otherwise to self harm post visit of the aforementioned person.
Upon reflection I reckon  that the self harm/blood letting did some good. Because yesterday my meloncoly was  (on a scale of 10 being the worst) about 7-8. Today (at least at the moment, pre visit) its about 5. However I don't recommend self harm with a bow saw as a cure for melconcoly.

The weather today here in Birmingham is very English. We have experienced all 4 seasons.....in 1 day!. There's a cold wind blowing & Charlie refuses to exit the house, looking at the hailstones with a look that says "what the fuck is going on???" During 1 break in the showers he came in moaning & drying himself against my leg! As I type now he's staring out of the front window at the clouds scutterling by in the sunshine, ears twitching & thing perhaps ..."what's going to happen now??" I'll tell ya shall I Chas....in about 5 minutes judging by them dark grey clouds over to the left of you....its gonna pour down, & poor Derek, who lives up the street  ( a slim female cat much sought after by all the un-neutered toms in the area, will get bloody soaked cos Adam the Hippy is at work.
You're better off dozing on the back of the sofa Charlie..at least 'til you know who comes. He tends to go elsewhere when mother arrives.
Funny that.


Sunday, 13 May 2012

melancholic.

I've spoke before about my relationship with my biological mother, and, I thank Caron and Mel for their understanding and words of reassuring comfort.. However this week and latterly today whilst my spirits were already at a low ebb, they were kicked further into quagmire of hurt by her.
As well as caring for her day to day paperwork and affairs, 'mother' comes to my house 2-3 times weekly where she is cooked a meal, her clothes are washed, ironed & changed, she has a bath (because she will not change her clothes, or take a bath herself in her own house). She, today had on the same clothes that she was wearing 5 days ago. Today was no exception. She was given a full Sunday lunch, a fresh set of clothes & made comfortable before being driven home by Kate.
I attempted to make conversation with her, showing her the 'meals On wheels' receipt that was sent me on her behalf, offering her a walk in the garden to see the nest of Blue Tits & such forth. But my attempts at establishing a rapport were met with "OK, no. I'll stay by the fire its cold, the sunshine isn't that warm...."
Sod it then I left her to it. My morale was already low following her accusations concerning me to my brother earlier in the week.
These accusations were prompted by Esther, (my daughter) offering to go to her house & clean for her-provided that she, (mom) brought the cleaning gear-soap, scouring pads etc. Mom told my brother that this was being orchestrated by me as I was "only after (her) money & I was not to be trusted".
Today it continued. She stared out of the kitchen window during lunch ignoring me, (which I've gotten used too) & spoke only to Kate & or Esther. Then on her was home she walked past me at the front door tapped my tummy & said loudly on the street-"getting a bit fat round there aren't you?" & walked off to the family car.
That's just a comment & observation I hear you say...but this is an observation from a woman who squints at the salt & pepper pots at the meal table, saying that she has very poor eyesight! And it was a personal comment designed to hurt me. She knows what buttons to press.

I feel  miserable, isolated, used & angry all at the same time. I'm unable to discuss  my feelings with Kate-she's heard it all before & because at the moment I'm not able to move on from the batterings I receive from that woman who is my mother she's getting pissed off at me too!.
I care for my mother out of 'duty'. I'd rather have nothing to do with her if truth be known. But I can't do that because my brothers wife won't allow the woman across her threshold, & Stephen has precious time for mom anyway despite him being the "son that she waited for" as she often says.

But at nearly 60 years of age and a half you'd think that I ought to grow up & stop behaving as my late father often called me.."like a girl".
And you wonder why I work in psychological field of nursing??  Could it be an unconscious desire/need to put right my damaged psyche?? Hmmm....

Saturday, 5 May 2012

The UK local election results








Thursday last saw the first local elections for councils in the UK. All the main political parties put forward candidates for election to councils of all the major cities. As well as the 'main' 3 parties there were, (as there usually are!) some of the more obscure parties represented. Parties such as 'The Monster Raving Loony Party', &'The Penguin Party'.
The latter is basically an independent party whose candidate A Professor Pongoo stood for election in Edinburgh. (Only in the UK could this happen!!)

Anyhow. I am happy to report that the Conservative along their Liberal Democrat catamite buddies were swept off the electoral board by the Labour Party candidates across the UK. O happy Day!!Its a bit late & a tad premature though....as the bastards should not have been voted into office in the last General election in the first place, & we have another 5 years to wait until we get an opportunity to vote them out again! Still the recent local election results were a statement I , & Cameron et al would do well to heed these results.

And in Edinburgh??? Professor Pongoo beat the Liberal democrat candidate into second place!!
I enclose a photo of Professor Pongoo for your amusement.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

This is taking the Piss.....





                              

House with rubbish behind itThe pile of household and industrial rubbish towers over nearby homes

Related Stories

A Black Country business that is responsible for a pile of rubbish which towers over homes is facing legal action.
The Environment Agency is applying for a High Court injunction to stop RDF (Refuse Derived Fuel) Ltd putting more rubbish on to the Brierley Hill site.
Residents claim the pile, made up of household and industrial refuse, is a health hazard.
RDF Ltd has failed to meet five out of seven deadlines to reduce it.
Judges at Birmingham High Court will decide later whether to grant the injunction.
Environment Agency environment manager David Hudson said: "We appreciate the patience that local residents are showing and would like to thank them for their help and understanding.
"We would also like to assure residents that we are doing everything we can to resolve the issue and have a dedicated project team working on this."