Thursday, June 04, 2020

Angus Dalgleish

Angus George Dalgleish (born May 1950) FRCP FRCPath FMedSci is a professor of oncology at St George's, University of London, best known for his contributions to HIV/AIDS research.

Which means he is from round the corner, like.

A former head of MI6 has said he believes the coronavirus pandemic "started as an accident" when the virus escaped from a laboratory in China. Sir Richard, who was the head of MI6 between 1999 and 2004, cited startling new peer-reviewed research produced by Professor Angus Dalgleish, of St George's Hospital at the University of London, and the Norwegian virologist Birger Sorensen.

Fill your boots over by yer.

This one will run and run.

Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Early in the Mornin'

Being temperamentally unsuited to socially distanced queuing, I have got in the habit during lock-down, of popping to the Co-op at the bottom of the road at 7 am, as soon as it opens, in the morning if I need any bog-standard groceries or supplies.

Yesterday, after scrambling down there in a bit of a rush, I put all my purchases through the automatic scanning till only to discover that I hadn't brought any cash or cards. I turned to the manageress at the manual till over to my right and said "I haven't got any money." She smiled broadly as I explained I had just forgotten it, that I would run back home, get the wherewithal, and be back in five minutes.

She gave me a "no problem at all" gesture and off I hared.  As was walking back with my shopping later, after everything had been sorted out, it struck me that if I had been a black man in Minneapolis I could have ended up in the same circumstances with a knee on my windpipe.

What led to the police arresting and then killing George Floyd remember was a call from the staff at the Cup Foods grocery store on Chicago Ave in Minneapolis, who suspected he had tried to use a counterfeit bill to purchase cigarettes.

On the odd occasion that someone at a checkout puts a note I proffer under an ultra violet counterfeit money detector, I look on with as much interest as he or she does. It would never occur to me that, even if it did turn out to be moody, I would have to do anything but dig in my pocket for a different one.

Tuesday, June 02, 2020

A Czech Dreambook

Ludvík Vaculík

People who are not capable of having more than one opinion do not think, they just go straight ahead. I fear that what people regard as thinking is often no more than the ordering of new knowledge and perceptions in such a way as not to disturb those that are already filed. Hardening the stone. People can’t stand it when you fail to live up to their image of you. Their inability to accept you is interpreted as a defect in your character, not theirs.

Monday, June 01, 2020

Second Wave

I haven't seen the footage of a policeman, Derek Chauvin, kneeling on George Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes, during which Floyd can be heard saying “I can’t breathe”. Ben told me he tried to watch it but he had stop because it was too disturbing. Even after Floyd's pulse stopped, even when he was presumably dead, Chauvin wouldn’t remove his knee I'm told.

I remember the days when the only Minneapolis association in my head was Prince and Paisley Park.

What do we think are the chances of a Covid-19 second wave in the USA?

Sunday, May 31, 2020

The Whole Thing is Rigged

Last night at 20:30 about 100 miles east of Dundee.
My neighbour  Lee has gone back to work after two months in lock-down. He's back on an oil rig in the North Sea.

I realise it reflects badly on me but I find this irresistibly funny.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

M4 Cement

I was on the M4 yesterday for the first time since out abortive to trip to Cardiff mid March for the cancelled Wales Scotland Six Nations rugby.

Initially nervous that the Old Bill might stop me at a checkpoint and ask me why I was away from home, it ultimately dawned on me that being on my way to a legitimate business appointment at the Avon and Somerset Police Headquarters might tick the necessary boxes.

As ever I came across Radio 4 series on my journey that I want to pursue.

Experimenting his morning. "Alexa open the BBC" invokes the skill and asks you to request a programme or channel.

"A Charles Paris Mystery" seems to work, as does Just William Pursuing Happiness by Richmal Crompton, but "Pandemic 1918" earned me only a stark "I can't do that." Shades of HAL in 2001, which could probably have been phrased better.

Friday, May 29, 2020

Pork Scratchings of the world: Issued as a public service




ColombiaChicharrones, Chicharrón Toteado (exploded pork crackling), Chicharrón Cocho
QuebecOreilles de Christ (Christ Ears)
MexicoChicharrón or Chicharra
United StatesPork Rinds, Cracklings


ThailandKhaep mu
VietnamPork Rinds


Serbiačvarci, Duvan čvarci
Czech Republicškvarky
SpainCortezas de Cerdo, Chicharrones, Torreznos, Cotnes
PortugalTorresmos, Couratos
The Netherlands & BelgiumKnabbelspek (nibbling bacon)
Austria & GermanyGrammeln or Grieben, Schweinekrusten (pig crusts)
United KingdomPork Scratchings, Pork Crackling, Pork Crunch

Thursday, May 28, 2020


Torygraph today
Mark Bingham: tragic 9/11 hero who changed attitudes to gay men
American businessman loved rugby and touched lives of many before fateful September 11 plane journey
The extraordinary story of how the passengers and crew on flight UA93, knowing that three other planes had already been used as guided missiles, decided they going to fight back against the hijackers is one of the most extraordinary things I have ever heard.

Got this on my watch-list now.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Improving the Flow of Urban Life

Ben has got an engineering apprenticeship with KONE starting in September.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020


I had three Charles Holden take away lagers in Wandle Park over a leisurely Bank Holiday afternoon yesterday, People seemed spontaneously to arrange themselves in socially distanced circles of about five. It was very striking, at least to me, how few seemed to be comfortable sitting with their backsides on the floor, whether cross legged, legs out straight or bent. The vast majority of folk seemed to be in the sidesaddle position above, supported by one arm with legs swept up to the side. I also noticed quite a few people struggling to get up. Modern life doesn't seem to do much to preserve mobility.

It has however encouraged me to book an online Bikram class that Shona is running at Wimbledon Hot Yoga tomorrow. I think it is via Zoom. It will be interesting to see how it goes from noon until one.

Monday, May 25, 2020

I want to break freee

Only 36 Decameron stories left. We should be finished by the end of June.

Is it time to start putting meat on the bones of the demob party? How does July 4th sound?

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Second and Third Rays of Light

After Peter and I went for his weekly shop in Waitrose this morning, we bought a couple of coffees at the COFX coffee shop opposite. He sat on the bench outside while I yelled at him from the socially prescribed two metre gap.

Later after I had installed Zoom on his PC and checked it was working (hat tip, Helen and John), we walked along to the pedestrianized Thames river bank to the Crabtree "we're excited to be reopening our doors this Friday, 22nd May as Fulham and Hammersmith deli, takeaway and delivery shop." A coffee for him and a lager for me.

Playlist song "The Tide is Turning"

First Ray of Light

I heard on the jungle telegraph that the Charles Holden was serving take away beers from 2 until 6. A bunch of us went along and had a couple of lagers in Wandle Park just behind it. We're going again on Bank Holiday Monday.
Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. but it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.

Friday, May 22, 2020

Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.

A call has been made for the Welsh Government to be investigated by the Equality and Human Rights Commission over fears older people's rights could have been breached.
The Older People's Commissioner for Wales says comprehensive testing for Covid-19 in care homes was "too slow".
She has questioned whether the "right to life" had been breached and raised the issue with the EHRC.
The health minister said he "didn't recognise" a breach and said the policy was based on scientific advice.
Since lockdown began, 27% of the coronavirus deaths in Wales have been care home residents, according to the Office for National Statistics. This figure does not include those care home residents who died after being transferred to hospital.
When everyone thought my father was dying with Covid-19 in a home in Wales he couldn't get a test, and that is a 100% take-it-to-the-bank fact. He.E seems to have recovered thank God. The lady in the video below is in Roath Park, Coupla hundred yards from mum and dad's.

Thursday, May 21, 2020


Why Joe Rogan's exclusive Spotify deal matters
Joe Rogan has signed an exclusive deal with Spotify, which will see his podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience, disappear from all other platforms.
The multi-year deal is believed to be worth $100m (£82 million), according to the Wall Street Journal.
Rogan's podcast, which is one of the most popular in the world, will arrive on the streaming giant on 1 September.
It will then be housed there exclusively by the end of the year, and removed from all other platforms.
"It will remain free, and it will be the exact same show," said Rogan. "It's just a licensing deal, so Spotify won't have any creative control over the show.
"They want me to just continue doing it the way I'm doing it right now.
"I'm excited to have the support of the largest audio platform in the world and I hope you folks are there when we make the switch!"
I remember that Ben and I were both equally surprised that the other regularly watched The Joe Rogan Experience.