Thursday, 30 May 2013

Big Brother

This weekend was some European football final, and it was being played at Wembley.  Because of my Olympic volunteering, I had the opportunity to performance in the pre-match was a choreographed battle between medieval knights...Vandals vs Goths?  I don't know really.  I turned it down, but only because one of the rehearsals clashed with Young Muffin's first Holy Communion.  Shame.  I think I would have been quite a good Lancelot.

This weekend, there was another First Holy Communion.  This time for a Hobbit (a new character to my cast of thousands).  I managed to wriggle out of the service...there is after all only so much religious nonsense I can take.  But, of course, I went along to the BBQ afterwards.  I'm never one to miss out on a burnt sausage or carbonated burger.  I got into a conversation with some folks about foxes.  We have three fox holes in our garden, and I was defending them. I've seen them play and I've seen them sun bathe, and I rather adore the fact that urban foxes have habit (evidently) of stealing shoes and depositing them around the neighbourhood...they are lovely.  But after reading John's post here, I feel foxes guilty.  Where I live, it's hard to remember how savage and destructive they can be.

I wonder what's best...better the devil you know?  The situation in Syria is going from bad to worse.  I'm still generally of the opinion, that civil wars should be left to the citizens of the country battling it out.  But it the Middle East is one region where everyone feels it's OK to stick their nose in.  If I look back at Iraq, I suspect that far fewer people would have died if we'd left Saddam in charge...his fall led to a void which has not been filled, leading to violent clashes and frequent deaths.  Of course, that wasn't a civil was George Bush and his playmate Tony Blair showing off.  The real downside has been the destabilisation caused by Iran not having a natural counter balance.  No wonder Israel looks worried.   In Syria, you've got a mottley grouping of various opposition factions, many of whom are not natural allies of the West....and especially of Israel.  Hezzbolah are now involved, and they too would like to wipe the Israelis off the map.  The Russians are getting dragged in.  Israel is looking more likely to lose the plot, especially as the Americans are doing a good job of doing nothing very well.  It wouldn't surprise me if there's a melt down...and the outcome is quite unpredictable.

I like to go to 'national events'. so was quite pleased when The Cat's Mother got tickets for The Chelsea Flower Show last week.  I had imagined great rolling gardens with lovely, clever planting which would be wonderfully inspiring for us.  Instead, we were confronted rows and rows of exhibitors selling (IMHO) tat.  This was the first year that garden gnomes have been admitted, which strikes me as bizarre, given the nastiness of some of the sculptures to be had:  do you fancy a 20' garishly painted dinosaur being ridden by a monkey jockey?  I certainly didn't.  There were show gardens of course...most seemed to have followed the fashion for the 'wild meadow' look...but I don't think throwing some wild flower seeds and long grass on a 20' square is particularly clever.  The Daily Telegraph garden was literally full of shaped hedges...there was no space what's the point?  As usual (I'm told) there were a lot of metal/concrete/wood constructions...none of which enhanced the display, I would say.  Even the winning 'Australian Garden' didn't really excite me. Anyway, I took a few pics...I'm not sure why.  Grump.

My brother is off to see Grandma in Cyprus this week...he'll be enjoying the sunshine, whilst we shiver in the cold rain here.

I had to make an emergency phone purchase last week.  My trusty mobile that runs my life just about breathed its last.  As I use it for work and pleasure, I really can't cop without it.  It comes with something called Google Now, which is the scariest piece of software ever.  Within an hour, it was able to tell me how long it would take to get to work from where I was.  An hour later it told me how long to get home.  Six hours later, it told me how long the journey would be to the flat in Brighton.  Six hours after that, it was telling me how the shares I owned were doing.  The only piece of information I had consciously given it was my email address.  Big Brother is truly here.