Wednesday, August 23, 2017

85a Lower Richmond Road

Rod is back in Blighty from Greece and John is in town from New Zealand, so last night (and more than thirty one years after I moved out) we met up for a drink in the Half Moon pub which is a stone's throw from the flat we used to share with a revolving cast of colourful characters.

According to Zoopla, it is worth £583,000 now.

We must have left it in a better state than I remember.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

A Raindrop in the Ocean: The Life of a Global Adventurer

I'll be starting on this new book shortly. It sounds fascinating. Here is a piece from the Torygraph on a life well lived.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Tubby, you go rest your thumbs. I'll drive.

RIP Jerry Lewis. I've always loved this scene. Dunno why, but there you go.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

That went quickly

Time for Ben to apply for a provisional license if he wants to start learning to drive on his 17th birthday.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Premier League 2

Callum has been playing for Chelsea in something called Premier League 2 of which I have never heard, so here is the skinny:

It is a new competition that replaced the Under-21 Premier League from 2016/17, with a greater focus on technicality, physicality and intensity to bring players as close to first-team experience as possible.

The age limit for players has risen from Under-21 to Under-23.

The league will take on the same format of two tiers, Division 1 and Division 2, with 12 teams in each, and the factor of promotion and relegation.

The 24 clubs who compete each applied for 'Category One' status in the Elite Player Performance Plan (EPPP). There are 15 clubs from the Premier League and nine clubs from the Championship.

All players born after 1 January 1993 for the 2016/17 season are eligible to play, and the format stays as follows:

There are 12 teams in Division 1 and 12 in Division 2, with every club playing each other once at home and once away

In Division 1, the team who finish first are champions

The bottom two teams in Division 1 get relegated to Division 2
In Division 2, the league winners get automatic promotion to Division 1

Teams ranked second, third, fourth and fifth go into a promotion play-off

Second plays fifth place at home and third hosts fourth in the semi-finals, both at the club’s main stadium, while the final takes place at the home ground of the team who finished highest in the league

All play-off matches are one-off ties, decided by extra-time and then penalties if the match is level after 120 minutes

There is no relegation from Division 2

Teams in Division 1
Arsenal, Chelsea, Derby County, Everton, Leicester City, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Reading, Southampton, Sunderland, Tottenham Hotspur

Teams in Division 2
Aston Villa, Blackburn Rovers, Brighton & Hove Albion, Fulham, Middlesbrough, Newcastle United, Norwich City, Swansea City, Stoke City, West Bromwich Albion, West Ham United, Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Chelsea are on top as I write and Callum got both their goals in the first game. Not too shabby when you think he was born in the year 2000 and players both any time in 1993 are eligible.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Fast was good. Faster is better.

A little-known feature of the 2nd-generation Amazon Fire TV Stick, which Amazon has never advertised, is that it supports USB OTG by default. This allows you to connect much more than a power cord to the device’s micro USB port, like wired keyboards, mice, hubs, and external storage, but by far the most common use is to connect an Ethernet adapter in order to get a fast and stable internet connection to the Fire TV Stick. If all you want to do is connect the Fire TV Stick to Ethernet, this all-in-one Ethernet adapter by UGREEN is by far the easiest way to go.

Thanks AFTV News, via Google's machine learning estimate of my wants and needs, one is on the way to Browne Acres.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

the path of totality

A universal pop song and the universe are about to align.
Guests aboard the Royal Caribbean's Total Eclipse Cruise have an extra surprise in store for their once-in-a-lifetime viewing experience: Bonnie Tyler, the Welsh songstress of "Total Eclipse of the Heart" fame, will be on board to perform her 1983 hit just as the moon sails across the sun. (The cruise ship will be positioned in the path of totality for this critical moment. “Bonnie Tyler was a natural choice for this once-in-a-lifetime moment," said the president and CEO of Royal Caribbean International, Michael Bayley.)
Forever's gonna start tonight. Forever's gonna start tonight.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017


Charlottesville: Race and Terror – VICE News

I'll watch this later. Not looking forward to it, but it needs to be done.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

One ring

1x Yellow metal Ring

Condition: Used - Believed to be a Lord of the Rings ring

No guarantee it is an actual Nazgûl heirloom, but just imagine.

Coincidentally I was listening to In Our Time on Plato's Republic the other day and learned of the Ring of Gyges which is a mythical magical artifact mentioned in Book 2 (2:359a–2:360d). It granted its owner the power to become invisible at will. Through the story of the ring, Republic considers whether an intelligent person would be moral if he did not have to fear being caught and punished for doing injustices. Internet trolls anyone?

Monday, August 14, 2017

All time high

A £4.21 transaction in my Bitcoin wallet (£4 plus a 21p fee) from 17 July is worth £8.82 today.

See Icons passim. Not the same transaction.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

What I think about these days ......

All-Ireland SHC semi-final: Cork v Waterford, Croke Park, 3.30pm – RTE/Sky

The suspension of Tadhg de Búrca is critical to this match. There are two aspects to the situation. One, how do Waterford cope?

We saw them take on Cork without a sweeper in June and it looked like it didn’t suit them. Tadhg de Búrca was chasing Conor Lehane and he was left and right and ultimately very poor on the day.

Since then Waterford have improved and played better against Kilkenny and better against Wexford, in their familiar formation – call it a sweeper system. They’re crowding the middle third and De Búrca is sitting back off the centre forward who is being picked up by Darragh Fives.

It will be difficult to pick someone else to play that role. Tadhg de Búrca has a great positional sense, is a brilliant striker and is excellent under the high ball and plays there extremely well. I presume Fives will be asked to do the job but the truth is they have no-one as good to take over.

Is that all clear? I have made the arbitrary decision that I am a Cork supporter.

In other arbitrary sport support developments my beloved Seahawks kick off against the LA Chargers at one o'clock tomorrow morning.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Green and Gold

Paul Flynn MP
Last night I met Tony O'Donnell.
It was a riot of rushed words, shared memories of mutual friends plus gratitude from me for Anthony's playing of me at Donmar Warehouse Theatre. He wore a wig for the show which he sadly dumped for the photograph. Otherwise the resemblance was convincing.......
Following the show Anthony joined me in singing our old school song-Green and Gold. We were both at St Illtyd's College Cardiff. I was there is the late forties Anthony in the early sixties but we share many friends-especially from the Splott area of Cardiff. We will have another get together to catch up on many events.
See Icons passim.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Comrade Detective

In the thick of 1980's Cold War hysteria, the Romanian government created the country's most popular and longest-running series, Comrade Detective, a sleek and gritty police show that not only entertained its citizens but also promoted Communist ideals and inspired a deep nationalism. The action-packed and blood-soaked first season finds Detectives Gregor Anghel and Iosef Baciu investigating the murder of fellow officer Nikita Ionesco and, in the process, unraveling a subversive plot to destroy their country that is fueled by-what else-but the greatest enemy: Capitalism.
I watched the first episode last night on Amazon Prime. It's hysterical. Cardiff's increasingly ubiquitous Jon Ronson introduces it along with Channing Tatum. Enough to elevate him to Welsh Born Icon status. That's two in a month after a year of silence.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

A Man Named Fieri Filled with Fury

At last someone who thinks - as I do - that Guy Fieri is a great man. What did he ever do, besides support charities and small business owners, to get folk so agitated?