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Showing posts from January, 2009

Fish Pie, Cookies, Loo Rolls and Modern Art.

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Now it’s just possible if you’ve been reading my blog for a while you may have picked up some subtle hints that I don’t like cooking. Although I’ve plenty of interest in eating I’ve as much interest in cooking as Barry White had performing in leotards.

I have been trying lately though. (Well, I’m trying most days) But I meant trying at cooking. On Tuesday I made beef stew. I didn’t quite around to the dumplings but I thought the mothballs made an easy substitute and no one seemed to notice the difference! Yesterday, I was even more daring and made fish pie!

I know you're interested in my culinary genuis so here’s how I did it;

Well, I used fish. (Obviously) Now I had some frozen white fish. It may even have been a brand like Cod or Haddock but I’m not sure. (Btw that IS a joke. Just in case you thought I really was that stupid. Yeah okay…don’t challenge me on that will you?) Anyway, it was white fish selected on the basis that the packaging looked pretty. (Well as much as two dead…

Music Monday; Two Little Boys ( A play)

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THE CAST

Master Benedict: good looking 8 year old, supremely fit and athletic (inherited from mother) budding comedian, impressionist and generally annoying little chap. Likes his mother to check his “cleanliness” so that he claim 50p a time much to his mother’s general displeasure.

Master Jacob: good looking 10 year old, supremely fit and athletic, (inherited from mother ) shy, sensitive little fellow. Likes to whop the pants of his tennis opponents to the delight and general bragging of his mother so that he can claim a weeks’ worth of abstinence from his mother’s cooking.

Mrs T: Youthful looking 29 year old. (Once) supremely fit and athletic, now letting it all hang out. Amusingly stupid with a penchant for Pierce Brosnan, chocolate and hats. Prone to delusions of grandeur, youth, prescription pralines and writing a best selling book titled “Misery is housework buthappiness is being trapped by an obsessed (young male) fan.”

Scene; Mrs T is quietly sipping a glass of rose, feeling reple…

We need to talk about Barack.

History would probably say that Martin Luther King was the first Black man to capture the hearts and minds of a generation, to inspire men and women of all races to recognise the justice of equality and to have a profound and long lasting effect on modern society.

But what about the other Black man ?

The other Black man is, of course, Barack Obama.

On Tuesday, January 20th Barack Obama took the Oath of Office of the American Presidency and for that alone whatever follows, be it good, bad or indifferent, his name will always be remembered for the being the first African-American President of the United States.

It was truly a significant moment for the world, the United States and for Barack Obama; a moment that perhaps only those who have shared a similar struggle can truly appreciate. In Britain, this personal triumph was matched by the election of Margaret Thatcher, the daughter of a green grocer who rose from obscurity to become the first British female Prime Minister in 1979.

Barack Oba…

I admit it! I have a fake fur leopard skin hat!

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Before the barrage of complaints come in about this hat let me tell you IT WAS A GIFT. I am a little worried that PB seemed to know I have one (which if you read the comments on my last post you'll understand. (I only hope he doesn't know the contents of my pantry otherwise I'm in deep trouble.) And then then this afternoon I was conversing with Sy in our usual banal banter sort of way and he said;

"You have a leopard skin hat? I am not sure what is worse... the fact you have one, or the fact that you just admitted it! Either way, VERY disturbing." Look what's wrong with this hat? Okay, what's right with it? I refer to this hat fondly as my "Dr No" hat; if you're a James Bond fan you'll know just why. It's actually a very lovely hat made by Viyella(Just gone into receivership - NO comments please.) but I admit I've not had many occasions to wear it. Well not an occasion I want to remember.....Well, I might as well go the full hog a…

Blue Monday

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Driving to school this morning, I was listening to the local radio who informed me that today is Blue Monday. Apparently this is the day in the year when the people are most likely to feel depressed. Thanks Gaz, I really needed to know that! Yep, with the current state of the economy and people all over the world feeling the effects of the depression, struggling to pay bills and being made redundant, do we need to consciously think about being depressed? No, thank you!

Anyhow, I wondered exactly where this "Blue Monday" had appeared from as I'd never heard of it before. Was it another gimmick like "Grandparent's Day," "Valentines day" and a host of other "Days" to encourage consumers to spend? So when I got home I googled it and found this; a publicity campaign by Sky Travel presumably to encourage people to book holidays.

The academic behind this theory has also calculated the Happiest Day of the Year for Walls Ice Cream. Yeah right, I …

Music Monday; Hats off to Jay Kay

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I love hats! Ever since I was a teenager I've had an affection for hats. Although scientists have recently dispelled the myth that you can lose up to 80% of your body heat through your head if I can find an excuse to wear one I will! I have quite a lot of hats including a number of fur hats made by my grandmother who was a furrier back in the 1930s. As it happens we bore a lot of physical resemblances including the same size head which means I get the pleasure of keeping the memories alive every time I wear one. But the last three years this has been my favourite winter hat. I bought it on a shopping expedition with my mother. I saw it on display and fell in love with immediately. It cost more than I would usually pay for a hat of this nature but it was by Liz Claiborne, the leather is so soft and supple, it has a silky beige lining and it's absolutely fab! I guess you could call it my Huggy Bear hat!

Sports hats aside, not many men can carry off wearing a hat without having th…

Boys, boys, boys spell TROUBLE.

Yesterday I received the following circular from my friend Mrs S who obviously thought it might be of interest to me as it’s entitled;

“You find out interesting things when you have sons….”

Now as I have three sons I am in a position to verify the accuracy of the following statements. Naturally, I’ve also added my own comments because that’s just the way I am. (Irritatingly long winded.) I’ve also worked out from point 20 that this circular originates from Australia which means I’ve had to revise my whole thinking about Aussies. Previously I thought the only funny thing to come out of Australia was Shane Warne.

Right here we go;

1. A king size waterbed holds enough water to fill a 200 m2 house to a depth of 10 cm.

Mrs T says -Yep and any kid with a brain knows a hosepipe does a much better job. And if you block up the toilet at the same time Mummy gets really cross which means your brother owes you 50p and a gobstopper.

2. If you spray hair spray on dust balls and run over them with roller …

Music Mondays; The Beat of Motown

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Today, Monday 12th January is the 50th birthday of Motown records and people all over the world will be celebrating the music label that spawned the likes of The Supremes, The Jackson Five, Marvin Gaye and a host of other amazing artists.

But the reach of Motown goes far beyond merely producing artists; it gave rise to a whole new brand of music, a merging of pop and soul that became known as the Motown sound. A sound which has since prompted whole new generations of singers and musicians to create music based upon and inspired by their love and knowledge of Motown.

In the late 1970s and early 1980s when I was a young teenager there was a resurgence of the 1950 and 1960’s Mod movement whose followers had originally favoured the sound of Northern Soul a UK derivative of the Motown sound. The 70s' mod revival was headed by The Jam but it was also associated with The Two Tone Record Label whose headline acts were Madness, The Specials, Selector, The Beat and Bad Manners. Like the early…

Catching up....

Yesterday while I was trawling back through my blog for some of my favourite posts (see sidebar) I noticed that I hadn’t done the final instalment on my quest for The Blarney Stone. So I feel I must just quickly bring the story of my summer vacation to Ireland to an end.

I didn’t find the Blarney Stone. Damn.

Probably just as well don’t you think? I never wanted to be a politician anyway.

However, I did find something else……

On the return journey, I was on the boat feeling rather joyous knowing that later that same night I would be in my own bed. I’m rather particular about beds. I like them very soft not those tortuous “Excellent support for your back” kind of beds that are like sleeping on a layer of reinforced concrete. Anyway, I was fantasizing about my bed and encountering The Milk Tray Man when suddenly I heard a voice calling to me…..

“Mrs T, Mrs T….. Come hither, come hither….”

It was a seductive, mystical voice …. I felt my body being lifted out of my seat and being pulled gently a…

The View From Here (or possibly from behind the sofa if Aliens is on)

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Ah ha! Has anyone been observant and noticed that Mrs T has a new badge in her sidebar? Uh huh... no one right?

I thought so. You've all been too busy gorging yourself on turkeys, mince pies and heaps of choccys right? Yes, alright so have I! Which means today, as it's the day the young masters return to school, is the day when I have to start The Diet.

Luckily, since I'll shortly be suffering from self induced acute depression I'll have plenty of things to keep me occupied including writing for the literary magazine The View From Here (Yep, that's my new badge) which I was very kindly asked to join by Mike French just before Christmas. I'm not sure if that was before Mike was "let out" but he's going to have to suffer the consequences anyway. It's too late now!

Now I was given a very flattering introduction ( I believe Mike's had a problem with hallucinations lately). Then for my first contribution I was a little sneaky (difficult when you&#…

Music Mondays; let's get down to the Bare Necessities

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Well 2009 is finally here and not a moment too soon for me. I’m sure there will be many of you across the world who, like me, will welcome 2009 with open arms.

2008 is a year that will be marked in my memory for a long time but I am not alone for across the world we all have our own personal stories of grief and hardship. However, empathy and love can makes losses and suffering easier to bear; it is healing.

But personal stories aside, last year was again fraught with terrorism such as with dreadful acts in Mumbai, numerous wars, famines such as the continuing crisis in Darfur and poverty. When I consider the fatalities caused by these events I know my own grief at family losses cannot match the death of even one innocent child in this world from poverty, starvation or conflict.

It is an awful world we live in if we allow such crimes to exist.

However, 2008 was also significant because many countries that have lived in relatively stable economic, political, and environmental climates bega…

The Ladies' Friendship Award

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Well I mentioned a while back, that I was instigating my own blogging awards of which The More Bonkers than Bush award was the first. Just to remind you the recipients were SpeedcatHollydale and Master Sy of The Wheel is Turning but The Hamster Plays Dead ( because he's too tired for sex- again.)

Now let me introduce my second award; it's called The Ladies' Friendship Award. Now there are no rules or anything with this award; do with it what you will! Pass it on, ignore it or as in my case use it as a screen saver and dribble over it. Here it is...




Ooh Pierce is just so sweet and innocent looking; I'm sure he never gets into any trouble!Now in pole position for this award is Usha for sending me this little New Year Ditty;There was a droolable man called Pierce
For whom two ladies fought fierce
They never settled quite
For whom he was right
Those silly quarrelsome old dears
Excellent, excellent Usha. But where's the second verse detailing the rolling pins and the mud wrest…