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.

Sunday, 15 April 2018


 Took the boys to Oxford. 

 Climbed trees.

 Saw the sights. Used the toilets. That sort of thing.

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Looking back it's so bizarre

A period of reflection. How did I go from writing 58 posts in 2010 to a mere 8 in 2012? 2013 was worse, with only 7. Did I really have so little to say?

Fatherhood, or becoming a parent, or whatever it is that happened, has of course been a major factor. On the one hand having children gives you loads more experiences. On the other hand, many of the experiences are deeply banal (J was sick the last two nights running. We think it might be a reaction to chocolate. Or the cold he has. We are both knackered) or private. Or both. You don't want to know about my feet, and I don't want to share it.

[It's a constant battle between the cats and foxes in our neighbourhood  right now. The poor cat with a bell round its neck is at a huge disadvantage]

On blogging, it doesn't help that I only feel my creative juices flowing when I've drunk something, and I then lose the energy about two paragraphs in. Plus blogging about blogging (or lack thereof) is pretty thin gruel.

I deleted my Facebook account. I don't have Twitter. No one emails me anymore. You can't have an emotionally satisfying exchange via WhatsApp (though it turns out you can't organize a camping trip via a blog). This is all I have. This is my outlet. I'd better use it.