Monday evening goodness

I don’t know what it is about the start of the working week, but at about 7.30pm every Monday evening I hit a huge energy slump.

I’m there right now.

But the good news is the weather today was stunning. My commute to – and from – work, on the VFR, was also stunning.

The soundtrack, on the way home, was also also stunning: Dark Side Of The Moon.

Pop fact: backing singer Clare Torry was paid a session’s fee of just £30 for her stunning work on The Great Gig In The Sky, on Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon. Clare was given no direction other than being told that she should sing as if her voice was ‘like a musical instrument’.



Beautiful bike


Rugby to Evesham (where I bought a motorbike trailer)

Evesham to Stratford (the real one, not the pretender in London’s East End)

Stratford (via a massive trip around the countryside) to Rugby

All on this:


That was my Saturday.


Blogathon 19/14 – glutton for punishment

Not content with enduring London today, I’m due back down there on Saturday.

The weather looks promising (well it does at the moment), and I might trundle down on the Daytona.

Or the VFR.

I’ve been looking at parking options in the Victoria area (because that’s my destination, obv).

And guess what?

Westminster City Council’s website doesn’t even consider that someone from outside the Westminster zone might conceivably want to visit their quaint little district on a motorbike.

Because the information about motorbike parking, on Westminster City Council’s website, is a few lines about residents who have motorbikes and how to get a virtual parking permit.

Well done Westminster City Council, go and stand in the corner and put this pointy hat on.


However, go straight to the top of the class (and take an apple out of the box on your way) to Public Information Exchange (PIE) who have come up with this stunning little web-based application:

Parking For Bikes

I love this little utility; it is scaleable/scrolllable, and the information seems bang up to date (even to the point of not listing the Bressendon Place free motorbike bay which has been wiped out by the ongoing roadworks in Victoria).

Blogathon 15b/14 – new toy

I have pushed the boat not so much as ‘out’, as ‘a little way from the jetty and then pulled it back in again’.

I have bought a hand-held video camera.

It covers the usual formats (780p, and 1080p). It’s got internal memory as well as a simcard slot.

It’s got the usual tripod-mounting.

And HDMI connector, as well as USB.

And it cost me the thousands of, er, pennies.


I got it off of ebay.

I’m looking forward to learning to use it.

The true cost of gas

There has been, in the last week, a great deal of words said – and written – about the price rise that British Gas has announced.

Most of the words have been against the announced increase. British Gas is making profit at a time many of their most vulnerable customers are struggling to pay their bills. That kind of thing.

But the fact is that most of the speakers of most of the words have got it wrong.

It is the duty of British Gas – a publicly traded company – to make as much profit as possible.

It is not the duty of British Gas to have a social conscience.

British Gas only has one function and, it may surprise some people to learn, that function is to make as much money as possible for its shareholders.

British Gas could diversify into other high profit areas. Selling arms, for example, as do other publicly traded companies.

Making money is the only aim of British Gas.

The wider questions which everyone who has written a Tweet, a blog, Comment Is Free about, has missed, are seemingly more obvious, yet nobody has aired them.

So I will.

Should the Thatcher Government have taken out of public ownership a not-for-profit organisation?

Was selling a not-for-profit organisation, which was owned by the public, and wholly able to be guided by the Government’s social agenda, a massive lapse in thinking?

Or was turning British Gas in to a profit-orientated corporate entity a good thing?



Blogathon 19/13 HiTech?


I’m working from a remote location today.

I have two laptops, my Nexus 10, and my Samsung S3 phone.

Unfortunately, I have to connect to the Internet, now and then, to download/upload/edit various files.

I say unfortunately, because the WiFi connection is as strong as a spiders fart.

But that’s OK, because I can access H+ (or 3G at the very worst) via my Samsung S3, set the phone as a tethered WiFi hotspot, Bluetooth from my tablet (or either of the laptops), and Robert’s your Mother’s brother…

Instant portable WiFi connection to the Internet!

Except Vodafone have other plans…


Rubbish, obv.

2012 done: 2013 ‘to do’ list being written

2012 has been an interesting year.

In a blog post on 31st December 2011, I summed 2011 up as ‘a bit shit’.

My aspiration for 2012, at that time, was for it to be ‘hopefully less shit’.

And it has been. Less shit. But, considering what happened in 2011, well, you know.

So while some people are rolling up the carpet on 2012, I’ve been starfished on my couch thinking about just some of the things that happened.

Sparing details and names, here’s just a few of them, in no particular order; in 2012 I…

  • was finally able to bring Vin back in to work after his two-year back injury-related layoff. The little ginger boy seems to be enjoying the gentle exercise plan that he’s working to
  • found a young girl to help keep him ticking over
  • developed a taste for Prosecco
  • sold my horsebox
  • had an odd virtual relationship
  • went to the stunningly organised Event Riders Association Ball (had a ball)
  • rebuilt the studio, changed the layout, recabled and upgraded the acoustics
  • went to Austin, Tx, to the South by South West music festival
  • went to Rome a couple of times
  • went to Paris a couple of times
  • bought the Bandit and reaquainted myself with motorcycling in a big way
  • passed my motorcycle racing certificate
  • hooked up with the Oxford Motorbike Group
  • met some good muso people and came to call them friends
  • met some good non-muso people and came to call them friends too
  • went to gigs and music festivals in the UK and overseas
  • had many social events with friends
  • had two car crashes (got hit by an uninsured driver and then there was the brick incident)

But apart from these things (and apart from the many other things that happened in 2012 that didn’t make it on to this list, for various reasons!), I also spent part of 2012 dealing with the fall-out from my marriage.

The court has been terrible to deal with, but the end is finally in sight. How ironic that it is the court that has been so difficult to deal with, and not my soon-to-be-ex-wife (who I get on well with). The entire court service needs to be revamped. It is a gleaming beacon of total failure.

However that’s 2012; generally speaking it was less shit than the previous year.

But, I need to say, it has been less shit through the company and support of friends – too many friends to mention – who have been aces.

I’m now looking forward to 2013, and what it could bring.

I am convinced that 2013 will be a stunning year.

I have such hopes – and such plans – for 2013. Plans which, a year ago, would have been impossible to believe.

A move of house is inevitable.

A move to a different part of the country is equally so.

And these will mean a new home for Vin. And a new job in a new part of the country, for me.

A year of change, for me, 2013.

What about you? Have any plans? Any goals for the new year?

Whatever it brings for you, whoever and wherever you are, I hope that 2013 is a positive year.

I hope you get many of your ‘to do’ items done.

I hope you have an excellent time.