28 February 2006

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | Radio comedian Linda Smith dies

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | Radio comedian Linda Smith dies

So sad, I must admit I hadn't known she was ill.

She was incredibly funny and it was always a joy to hear her.

BBC Radio 4 are doing a tribute to her on Friday at 6.30pm don't be a muppet, go on, listen to it.

The Price of Cheap Goods

Fascinating Article in The Guardian G2 section- Going Cheap

I'm one for a bargin myself however I've always found that the clothes on offer in Primark and the like are too skimpy, badly cut and the material tends to be too thin, light and poorly made. That's before one starts to consider the likely pay of those who made it.

Daily Mail Land

Today I am mostly working in Daily Mail Land. I don't know if you've ever been there, it's a land of "real values" for "real people." Unfortunately those values based on what is being said around me seem to be of greed, pettiness and xenophobia. Strangers are to be feared, foreigners looked down on, narrow-mindedness to be celebrated.

It is grim I tell - grim.

25 February 2006


Scotland 18 - 12 England.

There will be dancing on the streets of Kinrossie tonight.

I am so relieved as we are going out for dinner tonight with Dave and his wife and if Scotland had have lost then I would have had a whole evening of stick from him. This way I can have a minor crow, perhaps mention that loosing is character developing etc. But not too smug ;-D.

23 February 2006


I love the vagaries of the google ads. Normally they just advertise other blogging media but they've decided in response to the Winter Skin blog below, in which I complain about how fragile my skin feels, to advertise acrylic false nails and the like. Shame I would never ever use the things. I can't stand the thought of anything stuck to my nails makes me feel queasy. No good trying to explain to me that, it's not really like that, I'm phobic about nails so I'm not entirely rational about it.

I'm also phobic about feet.

I was going to write a little tale relating to this phobia, nothing gruesome, more lightly amusing but I couldn't actually do it cos as I started to write the words I started to wince and feel icky so you will never know.

21 February 2006

Winter Skin

Although I don't mind the winter season by this time of year it is taking its toll. I feel very tired, although the daylight hours are increasing I could quite happily take to my bed and hibernate until the FA Cup. January and February are very dull months here, we do not get enough snow or really any snow to do brighten the place up and it all looks old, grey and tired.

And my skin suffers, oh how it suffers at this time of year. It feels dry, tight and brittle no matter how well or often I moisturise it and not just my face and hands which get the most exposure to the elements but my arms and legs as well I feel like I've been dipped in egg white and left to dry. My skins seems easier to damage as well I managed to scratch my face last night with a fingernail while brushing away some hair and I don't have sharp finger nails.

Sometimes I think it is definitely better being a squirrel.

18 February 2006

Winter Olympics

Each time the Olympics are held I become fascinated by one of the sports. Last Summer Olympics it was the dingy sailing this winter Olympics it's the luge. It's a stupidly dangerous sport, you have to be completely bobbins to do it, in fact how did the competitors start surely no one in their right mind would think, "Ooooh I think I'll give sliding down an ice track at very high on a tea tray a go?"

But I've been hooked when we were in Amsterdam we had access to Dutch, German, Eurosport and BBC coverage of the Olympics so we were able to watch a lot of it. I know how they are supposed to steer but can't imagine being able to move a muscle myself, if I was sliding down the track I would be immobilised by fear.

And it's dangerous the Italian hospitals have been busy dealing with injured competitors.

Bobbins I tell you bobbins.

17 February 2006


Originally uploaded by Jane Goth.
Tulips of Amsterdam.

This is also a test.


Was lovely but very cold especially with the wind chill. This probably put some crimp on our time there, neither of us were in the mode for leisurely romantic walks along the canals as we wanted to be able to feel our faces afterwards.

The first day we had to equip ourselves with hats, scarves and I bought some tights to wear under my jeans, one of the best ways to keep warm in cold weather.

We took a canal boat trip which was good with the extra attraction of being under cover and could sit down. We spent a lot of time indoors, in cafés and bars either drinking a beer or a coffee or using the facilities because of all the coffee and beer we had drunk.

We walked past the flower market, a complete tourist trap no doubt but the buckets of tulips were a dash of brilliant colour that really stood out amongst the winter greyness.

Flower Market

The highlight for me was the Van Gogh museum. Not so much for Van Gogh I wasn't sure about his work before and now I know that I'm not a Hugh fan of it. Yes, he was very important I can see that and how he moved art on but it doesn't move me. My favourite painting there was a small Seurat they had. What made it such a wonderful museum was how they presented the work, that you could see it clearly even the most famous works such as the Sunflowers and the painting of his bedroom it was never too crowded. The building itself is stunning and the staff I thought were very good, yes we were carefully watched but treated like adults.

The other highlight was the meal we went for on Tuesday night, we had read about a restaurant in the Jordaan area Burger's Patio, an Italian restaurant that doesn't serve burgers. We had decided that we would wander around the Jordaan and happened on the restaurant luckily we were able to get a table. The food was superb I had leak and potato soup and then a casselet of duck leg, black pudding, beans and pork belly. Italian soul food, warming, - good considering the
weather outside.

Although Holland is not known for its cuisine it doesn't mean that there are not good restaurants and we didn't have a single duff meal while we were out there.

10 February 2006

Get Your Free Valentines Messenger Here!

More wonderful bobbins-ness from Electech: Love Pants - Ooh I say!

08 February 2006

Leaving Speech

I have to write a leaving speech about a friend of mine for next Friday.
She's given me some notes to work on but it's a bit dull dull dull. Not Anne's fault but most people's work careers are not exciting to describe. She has taken to the stage in scanty costume in Kiss Me Kate though while she was working here. Do you think I could re-phrase this as "Dancing
before a paying audience in her underwear"?

Update: because this has been a long term popular search I noted down some brief guidelines on writing leaving speeches here you are still going to have to write it yourself though

06 February 2006

The Weekend

Now I've recovered a bit more of an in detail breakdown of the weekend.

We've had a bit of a fun packed weekend. Starting Friday with a curry in King's Lynn as one of Becky's colleagues is leaving for a new job. Got to meet Mr Y who seems to be a nice chap and a fun time was had by all. If I could remember the name of the restaurant I would recommend it, the staff were friendly the food was good and they had a very good special offer which took the edge off the cost as well.

Saturday Bex drove down to London, we stayed at the Barbican Thistle so we had to go through parts of central London. I really enjoyed the driving through London. Normally when I visit London I'm on foot and I get to where I want to go by the tube, I rarely get taxis and almost never go on the bus. So travelling overground being able to see stuff was unusual, it also felt quite special driving through London ourselves. This hard to describe without sounding like a total country bumpkin "up in the big town" but London traffic is notoriously bad only those with no choice, the stupid and those who don't care it costs stupid amounts to park, when you can find a place to park, pay the congestion charge etc drive in central London normally. (Well that's on week days, weekends it's much better far fewer cars on the road the congestion charge doesn't apply and there is more free parking about.) The sensible thing to do is not to travel by car, honestly Ken doesn't want you to either. So to actually drive through the city past Threadneedle Street, under the Barbican Centre, along the South Bank, well, was a bit of a thrill because I don't do it often. The being in London bit I'm more blasé about I've done that often enough to know not to stare at the big crowds and gawp at the shiny baubles in the big shop windows ;-) Still impressed that the shops stay open past 5 pm though.

So that was me all thrilled up and it wasn't even 4.30 in the afternoon, we could have turned round and gone back to Lynn and I would have had a good weekend. But seeing as we had actually gone to the trouble of packing stuff to wear and would have still been charged for the hotel we didn't.

After a bit of food and shopping and a pre-getting-ready drink in the bar we got ready in plenty of time and then failed to take a single photograph of Bex all trannied up. Either in the hotel or at the club not a photo did we take.

Transmission - I was impressed by Transmission, the venue is about the right size, being on different floors meant it was possible to talk to people without having to shout. The drinks cost about what you would expect for London, there were enough seats the staff friendly. I didn't get the feeling that I'm being ripped off or exploited that I get at other places.

It was nice to see Connie Cox and Clarissa again and Bex knew loads of other people which was nice, it was really nice. I like it that there will be a chance that we will meet other people that we know, clubbing shouldn't be insular it shouldn't be "just about the music" I like it when you can socialise and dance. The atmosphere was friendly and the DJs Jasmine and Vicky were both good, far better than at Pink Punters and heads and shoulders above the standards at the local shag'n'shuffles in the towns near me. I'm not into dance music but even I know that Abba megamixes should not feature on DJs set list. So overall, if I was to invent a scoring system now, *ching* just done so - I would give Transmission a fab 7 1/2 out of 10.

Sunday we drove round London a bit more, finally found somewhere to park for free just round the back of Lambeth Palace and walked up to the Eye with a leisurely stop for a bacon buttie and a coffee. The Eye was fantastic, this is the second time I've done it and it still impresses the socks off me. The elegance of the engineering solutions and the sleek design combine to produce what must be one of the first wonders of the 21st Century (Pendants - I do know that it was built in the 1990s and the year it opened, 2000, was the last year of the 20th century but putting "the last wonders of the 20th Century" does not have the same ring does it?)

I didn't take any photos but Becky did you can look at them here.

So there you are what I did on my weekend by Jane aged 30something and 2/3 years.

05 February 2006

What A Result!

Scotland 20 - France 16! Is it too much to hope that this a sign of resurgence for Scottish Rugby? Anyway what can I say but w00t. Unfortunately didn't get to watch the match on telly as Becky and I were driving back from London. We went to Transmission yesterday night, my first time there, and today we bimbled about on the South Bank and went on the London Eye.

I've just got back and I'm a bit jaded still so I'll leave it at that.

Til next time.

03 February 2006

It Really Doesn't Matter If It's Raining Or If It's Fine...

Wyndham the Triffid has been exposed to the horrors of modern programming for small children. He's had a rough time of it, but these are the slings and arrows a modern father must face!

As I was reading his post, the natural cry of a media aware modern 30 something was to cry "Ah we had much better children's telly in my day" but the words got stuck in my throat. We didn't have better telly, not really and there was a lot less of it on the television as well. The cartoons were great Mr Benn, The Clangers, Ivor the Engine. Well I thought they were great and they probably are but I've seen them all so many times I think it is now impossible for me to be critically objective about them.

But there was a lot of rubbish on for children. First up most of the time we had to put up with this.

picture from meldrum.co.uk

There wasn't the daytime telly apart from schools programmes and the lunch time programmes so what we had was limited.

The live action programmes for small children were fairly dire two prime examples were Rainbow and Playschool.

Rainbow is crap, was crap. Being all post modern and ironic about it (a nasty habit which seems to have been invented just round about the time I was a student) isn't going to hide that it was poor, slightly creepy and unfunny. I didn't like it as a child - zippy was too cruel and I really didn't like the singers.

On the BBC you had Playschool Never liked it, too preachy and "nice children play like this" for me. I loathed and detested Hamble the doll don't know why now but I did.

However there was one programme that I loved, Playaway presented by Brian Cant it had guest stars on it, silly songs bad jokes and it looked like a lot of fun. Brian Cant was a one man entertainment system for the under 8s of Britain during the 60's 70's and the 80's.