Wednesday, 29 August 2007
One of the perks of my job, if you can call it that, is to see lots of pretty stamps from all over the world. We have a game we play sometimes whilst sorting. You show the person next to you the front of a postcard and see if they can guess where it came from. Obviously if it has Ibiza or something like that written on it, it's is a total bust. It needs to be a plain picture. Unfortunately my supply of anti-digression pills has run out so you are going to have to bear with me. I prefer to turn the card over and look at the stamps. Some countries produce really boring ones, but others print some really attractive stuff. I can recommend Australia. If you ever make friends with an Australia, be sure to keep in touch, by post. The stamps that prompted this rant are themed on Harry Potter. OK, the known world is in the grip of Pottermania, but I wouldn't have thought any country other than the UK would bother to issue a series of stamps about him. We have done so, but we are not alone. The stamps I saw today featured very lifelike portraits of the three main characters. Harry, Ron and the gorgeous, gorgeous (put a lid on it girl) Hermione. And where do these stamps emanate from? Believe it or not, FRANCE!!! You know France. The country that has warred with England (Ms Rowling's country of origin) on and off, for countless centuries. When the two countries got bored with sparring in the Old World they upped sticks to the Americas and had a good old ding-dong during the War of Independence in the USA. My conspiracy radar has gone into meltdown. I think this new bloke they have at the helm has something to do with this. People call him Psycho for short. Or something like that! Those garlic chompin', frog's leg chewin', onion sellin' types are up to something. I am going to keep a close eye on them in future.
Monday, 27 August 2007
Untypically for me my last post was a bit vague. I am usually a stickler for precision. I want to set things straight, but will probably ruffle a few feathers in the process. I seriously admire Camilla and think she is a great lady. She is almost definitely in Wiki but I haven't even checked. I am so happy she is with the man she loves. Good on her. This woman has had to "hide in the wings" (a theatrical term) for many a year, and she has done it with grace. She is a girl I so respect. Good on yah.
Never been one to duck out of a fight. I have never started one, but should it arrive at my door, I will rise to the challenge. Therefore I am going to wade into the whole Camilla debate. Yet again she has been forced into the news. It would be nice to be left alone to have a relationship with the love of your life (Charles, in her case) but the press are not going to let that happen. Diana and Elvis seem to have gained a certain cult status. Can we manage to live our simple lives without celebrating their every anniversary? Go girl, I think you made the right decision. Even though your husband and her son's say they want you to attend the memorial.
Sunday, 26 August 2007
Boy, I am in rant mode, and you are going to get both barrels. A girlfriend recently pointed out that I do some male type stuff. OK, she has a point, I am a bit of a tomboy. But we all are, to some extent. I guess I am just more than some. Telford might not be girly but I find his style rather sexy. Engineers just do it for me. All that flexing of muscles and building things. Oooooh. We are not talking flat pack furniture but serious roads and bridges here. Does it for this girl.
Thursday, 23 August 2007
Only gone and bagged me a member of the aristocracy at work today. Her full title is Baroness Smith of Gilmorehill. Check her out in Wikipedia. In climbing circles there are people called "Munro Baggers" who try and climb as many of the 284 hills in Scotland over 3000 feet high, as possible. We had a girl at work recently who had climbed them all in one go, obviously not simultaneously, and is the first female to do so. I think I want be a "Wikipedia Bagger" and meet as many of the featured people as possible. Oh how I love a name drop. The Baroness is better known as Mrs Elizabeth Smith. Her husband John Smith was leader of the Labour Party at the time of his tragic death in 1994. A very nice lady. I felt the urge to curtsy or genuflect in some way. She is also a very busy lady and I rarely catch her in. If you read me, not only do you get entertained (occasionally) but you also get eduficated. Tomorrow I am in suburbia which is pretty boring. Friday sees me doing "Famous Author Land" (sort of like Disneyland, but with less rides (well none actually)). On Saturday I have a second dose of Damhead. A favour to the management. Still trying to root out the seedy side. Maybe they are just good honest people. Damn, why didn't I think of that before!
Monday, 20 August 2007
I have decided to stick my head above the parapet. When I first started this blog I vowed to tell things as I see them, so hear goes. I am thoroughly sick of the whole Madeleine McCann thing. Of course I want to see the poor wee mite reunited with her family, but the media has wrung this story dry. And then some. Way back in the dim and distant past it was a real "news" story. The clue's in the title guys. But for weeks it's been a non event. Traces of blood are found here, there and everywhere. None of them belonging to her. She's probably had more sightings than Elvis by now! And stupid tabloid editors give these nutters exactly what they crave. Attention. Their 15 minutes of fame. Do you really think the abductors are going to parade the girl with the, currently, most recognisable face in the world, in public? And while we are fed this constant stream of pap much worse things are happening to many people, every day, all over the world. And we never hear about it. So until she is found, be that dead or alive, GIVE IT A REST!
Wednesday, 15 August 2007
The worlds first sherry fuelled blogger is back on form. And I'm still only on my first. Yesterday was a pretty low time for me. Lots of things went wrong. The worst one being the technical problems with my beloved blog. My "Martyne" link got attached to a phantom website. It's URL was an e-mail address! That's a sure sign there has been a technical screw up somewhere. It's first few letters were the same as mine so I guess that has something to do with the problems. Today, I am skipping through of fields of daisies. Who am I kidding. I couldn't skip to save myself these days. I am in "Famous Author Land" tomorrow. Sounds like a great idea for a theme park. I should copyright that before somebody steals it. Haven't been to JK's door for a long time but I have a cunning plan. I am going to mail her a big box, so that it will have to be delivered by van, on the day I am in her area. Devious or what. It's something women do best. Take care my dears.
Monday, 13 August 2007
Just had a nasty shock to my system. This could well be another weepy one, but bear with me. I need to get this one off my chest (such as it is). I watched a programme last night about Thomas Telford, the Scottish engineer and architect. Not every girls first choice but I love to soak up any knowledge. I think it brings out the teacher in me. He seriously impressed me with the sheer volume of his achievement although the technical stuff went over my head. OK, not all that emotional in itself but it got me to thinking about the recent dialogue I have been having with Diana at THEMYSCIRA (check my blogroll). She is training for a 5k race and I have been giving her advice from my experience of athletics. In teacher mode again! I told her to forget about the other athletes "and do the best" she could in her training. If you were around in the Seventies you might remember there was a poem which was popular and was called "Desideata" There is a line in it which is essentially a paraphrase of what I was saying to Diana. I still keep a copy on my wall because the whole piece virtually mirrors my philosophy of life. And then I remembered the Genesis song I keep harping on about, and the line "do as I say, don't do as I do" And suddenly I realised I was that hypocrite I so despised. Not in athletics. I can't even run with my legs in their current state. But in life. I'm a perfectionist but " doing your best" has a quantitative aspect to it as well. I guess Telford reminded me of that one. So thanks Diana. I have been looking for an epiphany for a long time and I think I have found it. You have taught an old dog new tricks. Or at least reminded her of ones she has forgotten about.
Sunday, 12 August 2007
I see the actress that played Tiffany in Eastenders was on "MIllionaire" yesterday. A namesake, except she spells her name Martine, not the posh way like I do. Been surfing the Blogospere for hours today. This old girl likes to get out and about. And a point on punctuation comes to mind. It seems to be the fashion to use a full stop before closing inverted commas. Well I like to add them in afterwards. And I'm right. So there!
Saturday, 11 August 2007
Been doing a bit of housework around the blog. I've tidied up the Blogroll, and expanded it. All the links work properly now. I'm quite proud of myself, given my poor ability at things technical. I have also deleted a comment. It started of in Spanish, which is a language I am not very conversant with and then went on to say something like "if you understand English". Duh! Do you think I am just taking words and stringing them into sentaces in the blind hope that they will make sense? Of course I understand English. I know I can get a bit silly at times, but that was just inane, so it went in the bin. Ooh, got in a bit of a lather there. I'm away to put my head in the fridge and cool it down. Bye dears.
Wednesday, 8 August 2007
Sure that title is a line from a famous song. Was it Pink Floyd? Hang on..........Just popped another anti-digression pill. My stock has sure had a hammering recently. The problem is that my thinking doesn't go in a straight line. Come to think of it, after a few sherries, neither does my walking. Sorry if you are reading this docsgirl, but it is the simple truth. I need help. But people have been telling me this all my life so there might be other things wrapped up in there as well. That's it ............... three pills at one go. It will either kill me or cure me. Don't try this one at home kids. I say this partly because of my ongoing allergy to being litigated against, but also because I care. If you are of an impressionable disposition please don't read the next sentence. Right I am going to drown another three of these babies, this has gone far enough............. done. I was really hoping you guys could help me out with my "Hole in the Road" problem. I need closure (as do the damn holes) before I can move on with my life. The hole that prompted yesterdays post has suddenly become "active" in the same way that volcanoes can be dormant for long periods of time. The scary thing is that after a month they are not filling it in but making it bigger. Have they exposed too little subsoil for the thing to have worked. Beats me. That's a phrase that reminds me of something else, but it can wait 'til another day.
Tuesday, 7 August 2007
Was going to whine on about my job today but I have another matter I want to talk about instead. This one has been bubbling on the back burner for some time, but now I demand answers, Stat. Still watching too many repeats of ER for my own good! But who can blame a girl. If I say George Clooney, then those of you who know me will understand what I am saying. Ooooh! Just a minute, I have to do something.......... Right, back again. Just took one of the new anti-digression pills my doc prescribed me. Yes, I can feel me homing in on today's topic already. What is going on with holes in the road? You can probably now see that my title is not actually an example of my poor spelling but a major piece of wit. Or not. Hang on. Got to pop another pill. The last one has worn off already....... Not sure how they do it round your way, but things go thus in this fine burgh. A load of men descend on a street and proceed to dig large and inconvenient holes all over the place in a seemingly indiscriminate manner. When I say "they" I use this plural in a loose manner. Usually there is only one person actually exhibiting any signs of activity at one time. Similar to a relay team, except that athletes never all grind to a halt at the same time for an hour or two so that they can catch up with their reading. Or "The Sun" newspaper to give it it's full title, lest it should be confused as something approaching literature. And when they have turned your road into something resembling a Swiss cheese (Just visited Wiki and it is Emmental I am refering to) they push off. This could be for days, or even weeks. Do holes in the road have to go through some maturation process? Would they be spoiled if they were filled in too quickly? There is definitely a cheese (or should that be cheesy) thread running through this one. Finally the workmen return and your road is reinstated. And then they disappear, only to besmirch someone else's hallowed highway. Never mind "Answers on a Postcard", I need you guys to post comments, Stat. Sorry, should never have taken that "Conversational Latin" class at night school last year.
Sunday, 5 August 2007
Just reviewed my last post. Thanks for the comments guys. We so need to get it right this time. I can't approach this subject without floods of tears but there is no way I am going to back down. It's not my nature. I hate the thought of thousands of animals being slaughtered simply on a precautionary basis. But if it halts this scourge, just do it. This is not a time for sentiment. I want to share a basic principle of mine that I think is relevant to this situation. However hard it may be at the time I always work on the basis of "greater good". You can also phrase it as "lesser bad". It comes to the same thing. I haven't cried so much in years, sorry. What I am trying to say in my usually long winded and pedantic way is that sometimes you have to be "cruel" to be kind. Sorry about the platitude but I think it sums up how I feel at the moment. I have been lacking in inspiration this week but this is definitely not the way I wanted to get fired up again. But as far as I am concerned, it has to be said.
Saturday, 4 August 2007
Emergency post. This is serious. No room for humour on this one. I have just caught wind of a new Foot and Mouth outbreak. I fervently hope it doesn't turn out like the last one. I was very much affected by it. I am currently crying and am finding it hard to see the screen and the keyboard, that is how much it means to me. At the time of the last outbreak I was doing the rural run every working day and so was very much caught up in it. Some owners of farms and small holdings simply banned me from their premises altogether. I didn't take it personally but it did make me feel a bit uncomfortable. Others insisted I drove over or walked over disinfected mats. The worst bit about it was that despite all these precautions I could potentially still have spread the disease, given the nature of my job. The worst case scenario would have been the llamas. Being ruminants they were at risk and even if they had been destroyed, due to no involvement of mine, I would still have been almost as devastated as their owners. Needless to say, I, along with everyone else was banned from entering the premises. They would have been almost impossible to replace. Thankfully the disease did not reach us but seeing the fear of people, some I have known for years, is something I never wish to experience again. Both for them, and myself, I hope the new political regime we have gets off it's butt and acts now. Last time they just sat back and hoped the problem would go away. And what happened? The countryside virtually shut down, tourism died a death, not to mention thousands of animals who might have been spared a similar fate, and the tax payers had to pick up a tab of in excess of £8 Billion. We have finally fully withdrawn from Northern Ireland after the longest campaign in British military history. So we have some spare troops. Unlike last time, when it was left far too late to get them involved, get these guys in there now.
Friday, 3 August 2007
I have now done three delivery days to "Famous Author Land" in a row. On the one hand I love doing this area, a lot of it is green and leafy, but the best thing about my current duty is that I am in a different area every day of the week, normally. The author count has not been good though. I saw Ian Rankin in the distance as I was handing a parcel to his partner on Tuesday, and I spoke to Alexander McCall Smith today. He was concerned about some mail he had not recieved, and who could blame him. It seems that in all this bickering the real point of the whole exercise has been lost. The customers. I apologise on behalf of Royal Mail to anyone who has been inconvenienced by this dispute. I wish it could be resolved another way. Arm wrestling maybe. But of course that is silly and impractical, much like myself. I am sorry we have felt the need to recourse to strike action but it is about the only option us "cannon fodder" have at our disposal. The fat cat bosses seem to want to run the organisation like some type of Victorian plutocracy where we poor minions simply do as we are told, or else. Would you be happy to do more work for less money? I doubt it. It has been suggested that we deliver milk and papers as we go round with our bulging bags of mail. It has also been mooted that we read meters at the same time! Next thing you know they will want us to pop up the odd chimney and give it a sweep. After all, it smacks of Victoriana, which our managers are deeply steeped in. I laughingly suggested recently (you know what a major wit I am) that we could slide broom handles up where the sun don't shine and also sweep the streets as we pass. I hope the management don't get hold of that one or we could all have a bit trouble sitting down from now on.