Thursday, 28 June 2018

I came late, to an early game

[warning. Contains sport]

Sitting, watching England B blast long balls in the direction of Jame Vardy. Depressing and dull.

The performance in this game means little, in that England aren't going to pick anything close to this XI in the next game (neither are Blegium, for that matter). What's depressing is the gap in skill levels between the England second-choice and their Blegian peers. The Lowerlanders look far more comfortable on the ball, and able to get forward far more quickly. Except for Michy Batshuayi, who just punted the ball into his own face.

Does little to dispel the notion that English football is about 2 decades behind the best.

I'm unconvinced that England proper are going to win this, or that their convincing 6-1 victory over a hapless Panama means any more than the unconvincing scramble against Tunisia a few days previously. Still the draw, if we lose this game, is kind. If England reach the semis, anything can happen. Particularly in the absence of Germany and the likely imminent demise of Argentina.

Russia won their first 2 games easily, scoring 8 in the process. England are better. I'm not sure they are much better.

Friday, 15 June 2018

The beautiful clarity of raw text

It's a nostalgia festival here. Not only do I have Elastica's debut, eponymous album (I'll buy a doughnut for anyone who can name their second, and final, album without resorting to a web-search) playing - I bought it yesterday - but also, thanks to the hard work of wadh0196 and others, sable is back.

Now you won't find me kicking against the technology that allows us to generate web content with graphics, and frames. Generating a blogpost that juxtaposed Patrick Vieira and Roy Keane over caption "Angry men" is one of my proudest (web) moments. It's useful to be able to see a picture of the USB adapter you plan to buy before purchase, given the ridiculous proliferation of interfaces new computers simply refuse to recognize. And ASCII porn is limited in range.

But, let's face it, the modern WWW is a cesspool, and form (in the form of pop up adds for holiday's I've already booked, and less useful information) has triumphed over content. For me, the primary purpose of the web was to communicate with friends, and connect with new people. Perhaps I've lost track of that. Perhaps reverting to text will help rediscover that. I dunno We shall see.

Saturday, 19 May 2018

And also...

Insert very long post about how I'm totally not interested in the wedding, with strand about how outraged I am that I'm not allowed to say this.


Am very disappointed by media fixation on flammable cladding. As Hackett said in her report, problem is that Building Standards are not enforced. Fixation on single element let's Government off the hook.

The Building Industry is rotten. Standards, whether fire, energy or ventilation are not enforced. Retrofit that makes homes worse, not better, is fitted every day. Will the Government bring in a regulator with teeth and fund an enforcement regime that changes this?

Can't see anyone in the media demanding that. So we ban flammable cladding and in a decade realise people are dying of avoidable cold and damp because we ignored the real, and known, problem. Epic example of missing the point.

Friday, 4 May 2018

Ten years

May 4th 2008. Kate and I got married. We are celebrating a decade together with cake.

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

There is Rosemary flowering in our garden today

Good morrow.

  • Tinsley Towers
  • GUITAR! FECK OFF, GUITAR (thanks Dan)
  • Cooking sherry.
  • R.U.B.B.E.R.Y.
  • Crouched around a badly tuned radio listening to Jam on Radio 1
  • To be, comma
  • Chegwin
  • Felix Nachos!
  • "Janet, can you reach into the back seat for a bottle of water.... Yeah, but try not to disturb the *FHWMP*"
  • DougStock 2
  • DougStock 3
  • Exercises in Song
  • Other People's Milk
  • "rositer doisters" and young "whippersnappers"
and innumerable other times you made me laugh, sigh or laugh-while-trying-to-drink-and-it-all-going-down-my-front.

Thanks for everything, J-P. As I said, see you in another part of the Universe, I hope.

Saturday, 21 April 2018

The Sound of Carpet

It's Record Store Day. I never go to a Record Store on Record Store Day, because (a) it's a Saturday which means the only shop I visit is 'Clark's Shoes' on Mare St, to get new shoes for the boys, and (b) the Record Stores around here are rammed with live sets, DJ sets and other stuff, which means you can't get near them. I'm too old for crowds of young* people crawling over piles of vinyl, like ants on a discarded lolly.

* Record Store day does throw up a number of interesting questions, however. Such as, do young people actually buy vinyl (I suspect not - If you're saving for the deposit on a Dog kennel do you have £22.99 to spend on a Vinyl Japanese re-issue of C. Memi's only solo album? Particularly when you can by a copy of 'Headlines and Deadlines' for 20p on Amazon).

Shoes. I can't believe how rapidly their bloody feet grow.

I'm pretty happy with the state of my music collection. It's broader, in terms of genres, and narrower, in that all the CDs are in the loft**.

**We have a loft! For 4 years we were scared to look. I'm not sure why. When we did look it was pristine. It's now full of CDs

Recent additions include Body Count, Unreal by Bloodstone, and Hot on the Tracks, by the Commodores. I live in Hackney. You can't move for second-hand funk, soul, jazz and hardcore. Hot on the Tracks is bloody amazing.

But, and there's always a but, my music collection tails off pretty steeply in 2010 and pretty much expires post 2013. Despite my curmudgeonly ways, I suspect there is good music that has been released since then (I'm aware of Syro, and also Run the Jewels). So my mission going forward is to ensure far more representation from the current decade. Any suggestions welcome.

Also, farewell Monsieur Wenger. Words cannot do justice to what you did for Arsenal.